The Gorgas Memorial Institute for Health Studies (Icges) has identified the circulation of two new lineages of the Omicron variant of the SARS-CoV-2 coronavirus in Panama.
This is the BE.1.2 lineage detected in countries such as the United States, Canada, the United Kingdom, and Costa Rica; as well as the BQ.1.1 that also circulates in France, the United States, the United Kingdom, Denmark, and Canada.
The head of the Department of Genomics and Proteomics Research, Alexander Martínez, indicated that in the last three weeks of November 45 samples have been sequenced, of which 59% correspond to the BE.1.2 lineage, a descendant lineage of the Ómicron variant.
Eduardo Ortega Barría, explained that the new lineages that have emerged from Ómicron are more transmissible, better evade the immune response and multiply more efficiently, but there is no evidence that they cause more severe disease.
The Omicron bloodlines have a preference for the upper respiratory tract consisting of the nose, nasal cavity, mouth, throat (pharynx), and larynx. While the original variants or those that emerged at the beginning of the pandemic affected more at the pulmonary and systemic levels.