Experts Reveal that BF.7 is Omicron with Mutations and Will Not Cause Severe Disease


eMediNexus    26 December 2022

Currently, India has reported four cases of sub-variant BF.7 variants, out of which two are from Gujarat and two from Odisha. Experts have revealed that this new sub-strain of coronavirus has not affected India disastrously; however, the Center has directed all states and union territories to remain cautious and ramp up the genome sequencing to track the variants.


Dr. Rajeev Jayadevan, Co-Chairman of the National IMA Covid Taskforce, stated that the BF.7 is a sub-lineage of the Omicron variant BA.5 and dubbed it the "great-grandson of Omicron." He explained that this sub-strain has a greater ability to infect previously infected or vaccinated people than the original Omicron, owing to its immune evasiveness.


Dr. Jayadevan, however, credited high vaccination coverage and naturally acquired immunity among those who survived past Covid-19 infection, stating that when Western countries suffered from the subsequent BA.5 version of Omicron, most parts of India did not see a proportionate rise in BA.5-linked cases. He added that there is no indication that BF.7 or its ancestor BA.5 has made any impact in India.


Additionally, he suggested that due to the fast-changing nature of the virus, continued genomic surveillance across the globe is required. He added that it can also help in the case of people with compromised immune systems, who can harbor the virus for long periods. 


(Source: https://www.daijiworld.com/news/newsDisplay?newsID=1032974)

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