clock menu more-arrow no yes

Filed under:

Why experts are worried about the lambda variant

The lambda variant was reportedly discovered in Peru. Should you be worried?

Coronavirus SARS-CoV-2 virus particles, orange, isolated from a patient.
This electron microscope image made available and color-enhanced by the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases Integrated Research Facility in Fort Detrick, Md., in 2020, shows novel coronavirus SARS-CoV-2 virus particles, orange, isolated from a patient. The lambda variant was reportedly discovered in Peru. Here’s why people are worried.
National Institutes of Health via Associated Press

Experts recently expressed concern about the COVID-19 lambda variant, which was first detected in Peru back in summer 2020, Fox News reports.

  • The variant may have mutations that could be resistant to the COVID-19 vaccines.

Why the lambda variant is concerning

Dr. Jairo Mendez-Rico, a World Health Organization virologist, recently told German news outlet Deutsche Welle that there isn’t enough data to be fully concerned.

  • “So far we have seen no indication that the lambda variant is more aggressive,” Mendez-Rico told the Deutsche Welle. ”It is possible that it may exhibit higher infection rates, but we don’t yet have enough reliable data to compare it to gamma or delta.”

However, the World Health Organization said the lambda variant has mutations that could make it resistant to antibodies created by vaccines.

Where is the lambda variant?

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention said there are no cases of the lambda variant in the United States right now.

  • However, the strain has spread to 30 countries, including several in Latin America, according to the New York Post. The strain also made its way to the United Kingdom.