OREANDA-NEWS. In Russia, five cases of the delta strain of coronavirus AY.4.2 have already been identified, said Kamil Khafizov, head of the scientific group for the development of new methods for diagnosing human diseases at the Central Research Institute of Epidemiology of Rospotrebnadzor.

"Three of them were found in Moscow and the Moscow region, and two more were obtained from patients in Kazan and the village of Bogatye Saby (Republic of Tatarstan)," he said. The department reported the first three cases on Monday.

Khafizov added that the institutes of Rospotrebnadzor and other departments continue to work on constant monitoring of the variability of the pathogen in order to identify both known and possible new gene variants of the virus.

As the WHO believe, the Indian strain (delta), named B.1.617, was first registered in October 2020. Its main features are a shortened incubation period and increased stress on the human body. Besides, the period of its elimination from the body has become longer, which makes it difficult for doctors to determine the exact moment of recovery.

Delta continues to mutate, there are already several subspecies, the most dangerous of which scientists consider the delta-plus variant. The specialists have not yet decided on the status of the recently revealed AY.4.2.

As reported by the UK Health Security Agency (UKHSA), the AY.4.2 mutation may have a faster spread than the original delta. At the same time, there is no evidence that the new variant causes a more severe course of the disease or is resistant to antibodies, Khafizov pointed out.

Alexander Gintsburg, director of the Gamaleya National Research Center for Epidemiology and Microbiology, reminds that the Sputnik V vaccine protects against all mutations of the coronavirus, including AY.4.2.