DOH Confirms Detection Of Lambda Variant In PH

DOH confirmed the detection of Lambda variant in the Philippines.

On Sunday, the Department of Health (DOH) confirmed the detection of Lambda variant in the Philippines.

DOH COVID-19 Variant

According to the Department of Health, the Philippines had detected its first case of the Lambda COVID-19 variant first seen in Peru.

The DOH said that the first Lambda COVID-19 variant case was a 35-year-old female. In addition, the DOH said that the patient was asymptomatic and was tagged as recovered after undergoing the 10-day isolation period.

Also, the DOH said that it was currently conducting backtracing and case investigation.

Rappler reported that Health Undersecretary Maria Rosario Vergeire said in an interview that the first Lambda COVID-19 variant case in the Philippines was a local case and not a returning overseas Filipino (ROF).

According to Vergeire, the case tested positive for the virus on July 22 and has since recovered. Based on the report on Rappler,  the patient was pregnant when she had tested positive for COVID-19 and local health officials were verifying whether the patient has given birth.

GMA News Online reported that the Lambda COVID-19 variant was classified as a “variant of interest” by the World Health Organization (WHO) on June 14.

Based on a report, Japanese researchers have found that the Lambda COVID-19 variant was highly infectious and more resistant to COVID-19 vaccines than the original version of the coronavirus disease that emerged from Wuhan, China.

Researchers have found in laboratory experiments that three mutations in Lambda COVID-19 variant’s spike protein, known as RSYLTPGD246-253N, 260 L452Q and F490S, helped it resist neutralization by vaccine-induced antibodies.

Also, researchers have found that two additional mutations, T76I and L452Q, helped make Lambda COVID-19 variant highly infectious.

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Earlier this month, the researchers warned in a paper posted on bioRxiv ahead of peer review that with Lambda COVID-19 variant being labeled as a “variant of interest” by the World Health Organization, rather than a “variant of concern”, people might not realize that it’s a serious ongoing threat.

Although it wasn’t clear yet whether the said variant was more dangerous than the Delta COVID-19 variant, senior researcher Kei Sato of the University of Tokyo believed that the Lambda variant of coronavirus disease can be “a potential threat to the human society”.

Meanwhile, the Department of Health reported 182 new cases of the Delta COVID-19 variant, raising the country’s total number of cases to 807. The DOH said that 112 of the latest Delta COVID-19 variant vases were local, 36 were returning overseas Filipinos (ROFs), and 34 were still undergoing verification.

According to the DOH, one case was still active, 176 have been tagged as recovered, and four have died. The status of one patient was still being verified.

Also, the DOH said that two cases that were initially tagged as Delta COVID-19 variant cases from Metro Manila last August 4 were Beta COVID-19 variant cases.

Furthermore, the DOH detected 41 more Alpha COVID-19 variant cases, 66 Beta COVID-19 variant, and 40 P.3 COVID-19 variant cases. The Philippines now has a total of 2,232 Alpha COVID-19 variant cases and 2,483 Beta COVID-19 variant cases.

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