QCOSTARICA – Costa Rica has identified 104 cases of the delta variant of SARS-CoV-2, the virus that causes covid-19, from mid-July to August 25.
83 of the cases are in the last three weeks.
This is one of the conclusions drawn in the latest genomic analysis (of the genetics of the virus), coordinated by the Costa Rican Institute for Research and Teaching in Nutrition and Health (Inciensa).
The delta variant is considered of concern as it is more transmissible and hospitalizations are more common in people who do not have not been completely vaccinated (that is both doses).
The age of confirmed cases ranges from six months to 84 years.
Of these infected, 36 were detected in emergency services of different hospitals in the country, but only one while hospitalized.
Of the 104 people, 21 had both doses of the vaccine, but it was not disclosed which drug they received or whether they were among the most serious cases or not. These are 18 more than those reported last July, when there were three people, two who had received the Pfizer vaccine and one the Johnson & Johnson.
The variant in the seven provinces
Delta has been identified in all areas of the country.
- Alajuela province: 38 cases, distributed in the Alajuela center, Grecia, Guatuso, Los Chiles, Naranjo, San Carlos, San Ramón and Upala.
- San José province: 26 cases, in the San Jose center, Acosta, Alajuelita, Aserrí, Curridabat, Desamparados, Escazú, Goicoechea, Pérez Zeledón, Puriscal and Santa Ana.
- Puntarenas province: 13 cases, in the Punaternas center, Montes de Oro, Aguirre, Corredores, Coto Brus, Golfito and Osa.
- Heredia province: 7 cases, in Heredia center and Barva.
- Cartago province: 6 cases in La Unión and El Guarco.
- Limón province: 6 cases in Limón center, Siquirres and Talamanca.
- Guanacaste: 6 cases in Santa Cruz, La Cruz, Liberia and Cañas.
According to the report, the detection of the delta has been increasing in the weekly analyzes.
In the week of July 11 to 17, it was detected in 34% of the sequenced samples. In the one from July 21 to 27, it was identified in 59.6%. and in the week of August 1 to 7 it was 57.1%.
Between July and last Wednesday, August 25, 251 genomes were sequenced (gene-by-gene analysis). Not all samples receive a complete genomic analysis, per week between 260 and 400 samples are processed, which are previously examined. For example, to detect the alpha, beta and gamma variants it is not necessary to do this, since a specific test is already available to find them.
Other variants detected
The analysis also revealed the presence of other variants of concern (VOC), which reveal to science as having characteristics that can make them more transmissible, more aggressive or that can evade antibodies and make people more prone to reinfection or loss of blood. vaccine efficacy.
- 33 cases of gamma, a variant originally seen in Brazil
- 14 cases of alpha, a variant that arose in the United Kingdom
- 1 case of beta, a variant emerged in South Africa
The following Variant of Interest (VOI) cases were also detected. VOIs have characteristics that could be of special care, but not all of them have been proven and that is why they are closely studied.
- 4 cases of lambda
- 1 case of Iota
In addition, 26 cases of the lineage or variant B.1.621 were detected, which the World Health Organization (WHO) recommends monitoring, but is not yet classified as a variant of concern or interest.
The researchers note that people who were infected with a VOC or VOI do not have different symptoms than other variants:
- muscle and joint pain
- loss of smell and taste