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Nikhil Prasad  Fact checked by:Thailand Medical News Team Feb 06, 2024  3 weeks, 3 days, 5 hours, 56 minutes ago

COVID-19 News: World Is Oblivious Of How JN.2.5 Variant Is Wreaking Havoc In Mato Grosso-Brazil!

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COVID-19 News: World Is Oblivious Of How JN.2.5 Variant Is Wreaking Havoc In Mato Grosso-Brazil!
Nikhil Prasad  Fact checked by:Thailand Medical News Team Feb 06, 2024  3 weeks, 3 days, 5 hours, 56 minutes ago
COVID-19 News: In a startling revelation, Mato Grosso, a state in Brazil, is grappling with a surge in COVID-19 cases attributed to the newly identified subvariant, JN 2.5, a mutation of the Omicron variant. The ominous increase in confirmed cases has prompted health experts to sound the alarm, shedding light on the dangers posed by this highly contagious strain.

 JN.2.5 Variant Is Wreaking Havoc In Mato Grosso-Brazil!

Thailand Medical News in its COVID-19 News coverages, has been warning about the debut of the JN.2.5 variant since 21st of January 2024.
Interestingly, none of the international research communities and variant hunters have done any proper studies on the transmissibility and immune evasiveness of this new SARS-CoV-2 variant and even the WHO has not made any comments about the JN.2.5 variant or about the situation in Mato Grosso which has now spread to other parts of Brazil as well!
As of February 1st, the Epidemiological Panel maintained by the State Department of Health of Mato Grosso (SES-MT) reported a staggering 5,377 confirmed cases of COVID-19 in January alone. Among these cases, 3,095 individuals have already recovered, while another 2,220 remain under monitoring. The grim toll also includes 13 recorded deaths, underscoring the severity of the situation.
The JN 2.5 subvariant, identified by SES in mid-January, has emerged as a significant contributor to the escalating crisis. To shed light on this alarming development, Local Brazilian media, Leiagora engaged in a comprehensive conversation with infectious disease specialist Dr Natasha Slhessar enko. The doctor emphasized the gravity of the situation, urging the public to take preventive measures and highlighting the importance of vaccination.
Dr Slhessarenko elucidated the continuous evolution of viral strains, emphasizing that mutations are inherent to viruses. In the case of SARS-CoV-2, the virus causing COVID-19, the Wuhan strain was the initial variant, eventually giving rise to multiple strains, including Alpha, Delta, Gamma, and the more recent Omicron variant. The newly identified JN 2.5 is an evolution of Omicron, distinguished by its heightened contagiousness.
Contrary to assumptions of increased virulence, Dr Slhessarenko clarified that JN 2.5's distinct characteristic lies in its exceptional contagiousness rather than heightened severity. With an isolation date in Mato Grosso around January 18th, the doctor predicts it to become the predominant variant in the region within two to three weeks.
The doctor expressed concern over the inadequacy of genomic surveillance in Brazil, making it challenging to definitively attribute the surge in cases to JN 2.5. Limited laboratories, such as Adolfo Lutz in São Paulo and Fiocruz in Rio de Janeiro, conduct genomic surveillance, leaving significant gaps in monitoring and understanding the variant's impact.
Symptoms associated with JN 2.5 closely resemble those of Omicron, including runny nose, cough, headache, body pain, malaise, and occasional loss of smell and taste. Dr Slhessarenko stressed the importance of vaccination, clarifying that individuals who have received three doses of a standard vaccine are not entirely protected. The bivalent vaccine is recommended, especially for those above 12 years of age.
With the impending Carnival season, concerns about a potential surge in COVID-19 cases have escalated. Dr Slhessarenko advised caution, particularly for vulnerable groups such as the elderly, immunocompromised individuals, and children. While acknowledging the difficulty of avoiding crowded events, she emphasized the efficacy of wearing masks as a protective barrier.
In response to the crisis, Governor Mauro Mendes ruled out imposing a new lockdown in Mato Grosso. However, he warned of potential "tougher measures" if health surveillance deems it necessary. Governor Mendes stressed the importance of awareness and vaccination campaigns to curb the spread of the virus.
He noted that while the initial fear of the pandemic has waned, the emergence of new variants demands renewed efforts to safeguard public health.
As of January 23rd, Mato Grosso has witnessed a more than 70% increase in cases compared to December 2023. Several cities, including Cáceres and others near the border with Bolivia, are classified as high or very high risk. The SES recommends the use of masks for health professionals and visitors across various healthcare facilities.
The situation in Mato Grosso serves as a stark reminder of the ever-evolving nature of the COVID-19 pandemic, necessitating continuous vigilance, preventive measures, and an accelerated vaccination drive to mitigate the impact of emerging variants. As the state grapples with the JN 2.5 subvariant, a collective and informed effort is imperative to curb the spread and protect public health.
For the latest COVID-19 News, keep on logging to Thailand Medical News.


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