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GP says new Omicron XE variant will ‘probably’ become a dominant breed in NI

Dr. Alan Stout (Photo: Belfast Live)

The chief medical officer said the new version of Covid Omicron XE was “likely” to become the dominant strain in Northern Ireland.

Public health officials confirmed over the weekend that a small number of cases of the new variant Omicron strain had been reported here.

XE is the result of a mutation in Omicron BA.1 and BA.2 strains and a fusion of two strains to infect the others.

According to the Public Health Agency, 1,179 cases of XE have been confirmed in the UK so far and a small number of confirmed cases (fewer than five) have been reported in Northern Ireland.

Some of the symptoms seen with the XE strain include fever, sore throat, sore throat, and cough and cold.

Dr Alan Stout, chair of the Medical Committee of the British Medical Association in Northern Ireland, said there was currently no indication that we should be concerned.

Early signs are that it will be highly contagious, so it is more likely to become a dominant strain again.

“Again, the first signs elsewhere are that it does not cause more serious disease and that the vaccine protects (humans). So while it is likely to be dominant, it will not cause any major problems.”

Recombinant variants are not common as few have been identified during the pandemic so far, said Dr Conor Bamford, of the Wellcome Wolfson Institute for Experimental Medicine at Queen’s University Belfast.

Dr. Bamford told Belfast Live: “It is expected that the recombinants will be able to monitor the evolution of the virus very well. The large number of infections that are currently occurring around the world and when we have many variants circulating together like BA.1 and BA.2. But also Delta and Omicron earlier this year.

“There is some early evidence that XE spreads slightly better than the BA.1 and BA.2 standards that now dominate NI. However, it is unlikely to have a significant impact on events, as it is still essentially Omicron A.” .

What could happen is that the current wave is bigger than it will be. However, this is just based on the fact that XE is actually better than BA.2.

“If we want to reduce the negative effects of the development of the virus, we can do two things: reduce the number of infections in the community and maintain a high level of immunity through vaccination, especially in high-risk groups.”

What is XE?

XE is a mutation of the Omicron strains BA.1 and BA.2 and is referred to as ‘recombinant’.

This occurs when two variants meet in the process of multiplication and decide to evolve by sharing a genome or trait.

Once that happens, a recombinant option appears.

When was it first discovered in the UK?

The variant was first discovered in the UK in January.

What symptoms have been reported with the variant?

Symptoms of the Omicron variant XE include some of the most common symptoms of Covid


  • high temperature or chills (cold)
  • The new cough continues
  • lack of air
  • I feel tired
  • It hurts in the body
  • Headache
  • sore throat
  • Მ loss loss
  • Diarrhea
  • Feeling bad or bad

The latest Covid data for Northern Ireland

The data from the Ministry of Health on Covid was not updated during the Easter period, but the next update will be released later today.

On Thursday in the past 24 hours, 791 cases of the virus were reported. Five deaths were also reported during this period.

As of Thursday, a total of 371,657 vaccines have been administered.

Source: Belfastlive





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