It accounts for less than 1% of samples in France, the WHO said.
“There are two variants: B.1.640.1 and B.1.640.2, and it is important to monitor them due to the number of mutations, but it is not circulating too actively,” the WHO noted.
WHO´s Immunization Department Director Kate O’Brien explained that mutation may increase its prevalence, but it is still being assessed.
“It is quite common for this situation to occur,” Ms. O´Brien stated.
This new strain was found at the Méditerrannée University Hospital Institute in Marseille (France), hence it was called I.H.U.
It is known so far this new strain has 46 mutations and 37 deletions resulting in 30 amino acid substitutions and 12 deletions.