According to scientists, this strain can bypass the immune defense in 10% of previously ill people.
The percentage of fatal cases of the iota variant of coronavirus, first detected in New York, can be up to 82% higher compared to other strains in certain age groups. This is stated in the preliminary version of the study by New York scientists, published on the website of the electronic scientific library medRxiv.
According to models compiled by scientists based on several New York medical databases in the period from November 2020 to April 2021, the strain with the designation B.1.526 showed “a significantly increased risk of deaths in older adults: by 46% among the 45-64 age group, by 82% among people aged 65 to 74 years and by 62% among those over 75 years <…> compared with the baseline risk of deaths in previous variants.”
According to scientists, the “iota” strain is also 15-25% more contagious than other variants of the coronavirus and can bypass the immune defense in 10% of previously ill people. “New variants of SARS-CoV-2, such as B.1.526, can increase the contagiousness, avoid previously developed immunity, and increase the severity of the disease. Early preparation and close monitoring of SARS-CoV-2 variants and their epidemiological characteristics are critically important for the response to the COVID-19 pandemic, as it remains a global threat to public health,” the authors of the study concluded.