April 22, 2022 · less than 3 min read
The UK loves developing new Covid variants – and those Brits have been at it again.
Step forward XE
Everyone take a deep breath Let’s talk about this rationally. Yes, there’s a new variant, and yes, it’s been detected first in the UK – again. Thanks, Britain. The new variant, XE, is believed to be up to 10% more transmissible than either the BA.1 or BA.2 variants which are currently on a world tour. That would make it by far the most transmissible version of Covid yet found.
So far, only about 637 cases have been detected as this new variant, but as always, the true number will be significantly higher than this. It’s believed to be something of a super-mutation of the BA variants, and while that sounds scary, virologists have been quick to quell any panic. There’s no evidence at all that it’s any more serious, in terms of the actual damage it can cause you. And breathe.
When will it end?
Scientists have been warning since March 2020 that the Covid virus can mutate very quickly, and there was always the possibility that it could continue mutating, well, forever. What changed everything was the vaccine rollout. Despite how transmissible the virus is, the extra protection means that as long as you’re fully jabbed, it shouldn’t be able to cause you serious illness.
The concern for health authorities is that with a new variant, the virus seems to renew itself, meaning that we might need to keep our immunity topped up. Cause for concern though? Not at the moment – just make sure everyone has got their jabs.
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