By The Mirror and Thai Newsroom
MORE than 100 cases of the new strain have been identified across the UK.
Known as VUI-21MAY-02 (C.36.3), the variant was first detected in Thailand in people who had travelled from Egypt, Public Health England confirmed.
It was designated as a variant under investigation on May 24 on the basis of the mutation profile and increased importation from a widening international area.
There is currently no evidence that this variant causes more severe disease or renders the vaccines any less effective.
PHE is carrying out laboratory testing to better understand the impact of the mutations on the behaviour of the virus.
The organisation did not disclose where the cases had been detected but said test and trace has been used to limit the spread.
While scientists keep an eye on the new strain, the Indian variant has quickly become the dominant version of coronavirus in the UK.
It was reported yesterday that the variant – B.1.617.2 – was detected in 151 local authorities in the week ending 15 May.
That is an 18 per cent weekly increase, according to figures from the Wellcome Sanger Institute which sequences a random sample of positive tests in the community.
Thailand has not been too badly impacted by Covid-19 compared to other similar sized countries, with the addition of today’s 34 fatalities taking the total death toll to 954,
According to the Thai Public Health Ministry there were 3,759 new coronavirus cases today raising the cumulative confirmed total to 144,976, Sanook.com said.
The new batch of cases were divided into two groups, with 2,465 being among the general public while 1,294 cases emerged in prisons and detention centres. Another 4,044 patients were cured and discharged from hospital.
Top: The variant was first detected in Thailand in people who had travelled from Egypt Photo: AFP via Getty Images and published by The Mirror
Image: PA published by The Mirror