- NCOC says situation is being closely monitored.
- New Omicron sub-variant has already been detected in multiple countries.
- Sub-variant has higher capacity to cause re-infection.
ISLAMABAD: Denying detection of Omicron sub-variant BF.7 in Pakistan, the National Command and Operation Centre (NCOC) Saturday said that there is no threat of any new variant of COVID-19 and the situation was being closely monitored by the authorities.
“An unverified report is circulating in the media regarding the threat of a new COVID-19 variant. The National Command and Operations Center affirms that at present there is no such threat. The situation is being closely monitored,” the National Institute of Health (NIH) Islamabad said in a statement on the microblogging website Twitter.
Following China, India reported the detection of several cases of BF.7, a sub-variant of the Omicron variant of Covid-19 which is driving the huge COVID surge in China. The BF.7 sub-variant has already been detected in several other countries including Germany, Belgium, France, Denmark, the US and the UK.
Believed to be a highly transmissible variant with a shorter incubation period, the BF.7 is a sub-lineage of the Omicron variant BA, experts at NIH said. They said that it also has a higher capacity to cause re-infection and can even infect vaccinated individuals.
“As per the latest studies, the BF.7 variant has several times higher neutralization resistance than the original Wuhan virus. This means the antibodies from the vaccination are not effective enough against the virus”, an expert at the NIH told The News.