Covid-19: New mutated form of Omicron found, but 'no cause for alarm', says expert

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Viral Infection, Microbiology And Virology Concept. Virus Background with Copy Space.
Viral Infection, Microbiology And Virology Concept. Virus Background with Copy Space.

A new mutated form of the Omicron (B.1.1.529) coronavirus variant has been detected, but this should not raise alarm bells just yet, Dr Richard Lessells, a leading infectious diseases expert involved in surveillance for Covid-19 variants, told Health24 on Wednesday.

It had been dubbed the stealth version by some researchers, according to reporting by the Guardian

This because, while it has many of the defining mutations seen in Omicron, it lacks a specific genetic change that can be picked up by the polymerase chain reaction (PCR) tests - particularly the one by Thermo Fisher Scientific, which is mainly used in South Africa's private labs.

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