84% in France, what symptoms?

NEW VARIANT. The BA.2 variant (Omicron subvariant) is the majority in France with 84% of positive covid tests analyzed by Public Health France. What are your symptoms? Is it possible to get infected again? Is more dangerous?

[Mis à jour le 1er avril 2022 à 11h10] B.A.2 it’s a Omicron subvariantin itself a covid variant-19. It is more contagious than the BA1 Omicron subvariant that has circulated until now in France. the sublineage BA.2 is majority in Francerepresenting 84% of positive covid tests analyzed by Public Health France according to epidemiological point from the health agency on March 31. “The BA.2’s transmissibility raises the question of its role in reversing epidemiological trends in recent weeks, marked by a incidence reboundwarns Public health France in its risk analysis on emerging variants updated on March 25. “However, BA.2 alone cannot explain these trends” qualifies the organization that proposes the reduction of barrier gestures in France (abandonment of the mask…). In France, an increase in reinfections is observed. Several recent studies have highlighted the possibility of occurrence of ainfection by BA.2 after a BA.1 infection, even within a very short period of time (less than 60 days (2 months)). “However, they do agree that these are probably rare events.” highlighted Public Health France. What is this new mutation? of covid-19? It’s her more contagious, more dangerous, What omicron? the vaccine effective against this new variant? which are the symptoms of BA.2 ? To update.

Definition: what is the new variant BA.2?

The BA.2 is a Omicron subvariant. It is a “little cousin” of the Omicron variant“explained Jean-François Delfraissy, president of the Covid Scientific Council, at the microphone of France information in January. Named BA.2, it is a sublineage of Omicron like BA.1 (which was circulating until now) or BA.3. “The most recent data seem to confirm that BA.1 and BA.2 show similar severity and evasion of the immune response and therefore BA.2 is not considered a distinct variant, but is included in the Omicron VOC” . specifies Public Health France. TO study in danish conducted by the research institute Statens Serum Institut (Copenhagen) announced in January 2022 that “the initial analysis does not show no difference in hospitalizations for BA.2 compared to BA.1.” However BA.2 “is he most contagious variant from virus SARS-CoV-2 we have seen so far“, warned Maria Van Kerkhove of the WHO, on March 19 at a press conference.

What is the rate for the BA.2 variant in France?

The BA.2 Omicron variant is now more present than the BA.1 variant, mainly circulating since the end of 2021 in France. As of March 31, according to Public Health France, BA.2 represents 84% Omicron sequences analyzed during the week of March 21-27. “The progression of BA.2 to the detriment of BA.1 is observed in the entire metropolitan area, but at different levels depending on the region. In DROMs, BA.2 also seems to be increasing, but the data needs to be consolidated.“adds the organization.

What are the symptoms of the BA.2 variant?

At the moment, there are no specific symptoms listed in cases of the BA.2 subvariants. On the other hand for the Omicron variant”Epidemiological investigations indicate a specific clinical presentation with more upper respiratory symptoms and less loss of taste and smell, as well as less severity (up to 80% lower risk of hospitalization and admission to intensive care)“reported Public Health France 26 of January. Symptoms of the BA.2 variant (like Omicron in general) can be:

  • tiredness;
  • Cough ;
  • Fever ;
  • Headache
  • muscle aches or body aches;
  • Throat pain ;
  • Runny nose ;
  • nausea and vomiting
  • Unpleasant breathing (more rarely)
  • Loss of taste and smell (more rarely)

Is the BA.2 variant more contagious than Omicron?

BA.2 is more communicable than BA.1 (39% secondary attack rate for BA.2 vs. 29% for BA.1). A study also estimates that the generation interval (time between two cases) of BA.2 is 15% lower than that of BA.1. These differences in transmissibility explain the rprogressive placement of BA.1 by BA.2 globally observed” emphasizes French Public Health on March 25. BA.2 “is he most contagious variant of the SARS-CoV-2 virus that we have seen so farsaid Maria Van Kerkhove, a WHO epidemiologist, on March 19.

Proportion of BA.2 cases over total sequences deposited in GISAID, by country as of February 21, 2022 © Public Health France

What are the risks of reinfection with BA2?

The frequency of possible reinfections with SARS-CoV-2 has increased significantly since the introduction and distribution in France of the Omicron variant, in early December 2021, notes Public Health France. “The upward resumption of SARS-CoV-2 circulation observed for several weeks in France and therise of the Omicron BA.2 sublineage, majority from week 09-2022 are two factors that may play a role in the current trend of increasing numbers of reinfections” agency confirms. Several recent studies have highlighted the possibility of BA.2 reinfection after BA.1 infection, even in a very short period of time (less than 60 days). “However, they do agree that these are probably rare events.”

Is the BA.2 variant more dangerous than Omicron?

Omicron’s BA2 subvariant does not “cause a more severe form” of Covid than BA1, according to Maria Van Kerkhove, epidemiologist in charge of the WHO’s emerging diseases unit, on March 19. However, with a large number of cases, you will see an increase in hospitalizations and this will turn into an increase in deaths.…”. He stated that there is no no “difference in terms of severity between BA1 and BA2“.

In France, screening strategy can detect all Omicron without distinction, if they are BA.1 or BA.2 and therefore reactively know the level of circulation of the variant” indicates Public Health France. In a second time, a sequence allows differentiation between subvariants BA.1 and BA.2 Detection allows to reactively follow the Omicrons as a whole and sequencing allows a finer analysis of the different sublineages. [BA.1 ou BA.2]“.

Are vaccines against the BA.2 variant effective?

“The efficacy of the vaccine against symptomatic disease caused by BA.1 and BA.2 is similar: after two doses the efficacy is 10% for BA.1 and 18% for BA.2, after three doses the efficacy against symptomatic disease is 69% for BA.1 and 74% for BA.2 Efficacy drops to almost 50% two and a half months after the 3rd dose for BA.1 and BA.2“according to the study of the British health agency published on February 25”.This suggests that vaccination is at least as effective in preventing acquisition of BA.2 and may be more effective in preventing transmission of BA.2 than BA.1“, remarked the WHO.”Lthe efficacy of the vaccine is maintained against Omicron after the administration of a booster dose, especially against severe forms“Public Health France confirmed on January 26.

Sources:

– “SARS-CoV-2 variants of concern and variants under investigation in England”, British Health Agency, 25 February 2022

– “Coronavirus: circulation of SARS-CoV-2 variants”, updated February 25, 2022, Public Health France

-“BA.2 is more transmissible than BA.1 but vaccinated people are less likely to become infected and transmit infection”, Jan. 31, Statens Serum Institut.

– COVID-19: epidemiological update of January 27, 2022, Public Health France

– “Risk analysis on emerging variants of SARS-CoV-2”, January 26, 2022, Public Health France.

– “Now an Omicron variant, BA.2, accounts for nearly half of all Danish Omicron cases” Jan 20, 2022, Statens Serum Institut.

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