Omicron is less aggressive because it mainly avoids attacking the lungs

Omicron is less aggressive because it mainly avoids attacking the lungs
Omicron is less aggressive because it mainly avoids attacking the lungs

A series of recently published studies have found that the Omicron variant may be less severe than other coronavirus strains because of the way it attacks the lungs, it reports Friday.

Studies in mice and hamsters found that Omicron caused less damage to the lungs, being largely restricted to the nose, throat and trachea. The New York Times mentioned.

Earlier variants were causing scarring of the lungs and serious breathing difficulties.

“It’s fair to say that the idea of ​​disease that manifests itself mainly in the upper respiratory tract is emerging,” said Roland Eils, a computational biologist at the Berlin Institute of Health who has studied how coronaviruses infect the airways.

Ravindra Gupta, a leading researcher at Cambridge University and author of one of the studies, said: From within This Omicron “does its own thing in many ways. The biology of the virus is not what it used to be. It’s almost something new.”

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One study found that Omicron levels in the lungs were one-tenth or less the level of other variables.

Several experiments published in recent days have pointed to the conclusion that Omicron is milder than Delta and other earlier versions of the virus, according to real-world data.

The studies were published online in pre-print format, meaning they were not peer-reviewed by other scientists and published in scientific journals.

Scientists at the African Institute for Health Research in Durban, South Africa, work on an omicron variant of the COVID-19 virus, 15 December 2021 (AP Photo / Jerome Delay)

Omicron was first identified in South Africa and Botswana in late November. The strain quickly became dominant in South Africa, causing the infection to spread and peaking at about 26,000 daily cases were reported in mid-December, according to official statistics.

The variant is currently present in more than 100 countries, according to the World Health Organization, and affects both people vaccinated and already infected with the coronavirus.

Several studies suggest that Omicron, the strain now prevalent in some countries, has a lower risk of hospitalization, but the World Health Organization still urges caution.

“The overall risk related to the new strain of concern, Omicron, remains very high,” said the United Nations World Health Organization.

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