Cypriot Genius Scientist Insists Covid-19 Variant Deltacron Not an Error
A Cypriot scientist defended his assertion that a new strain of Covid-19 Variant Deltacron exists that combines characteristics of the delta and omicron variants.
Other scientists have speculated that Leonidos Kostrikis’s findings are a result of laboratory contamination. But he told Bloomberg in an emailed statement that the cases he has identified “indicate an evolutionary pressure to an ancestral strain to acquire these mutations and not a result of a single recombination event.”
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Deltacron Covid-19 Variant infection is higher among patients hospitalized for Covid-19 than among non-hospitalized patients, so that rules out the contamination hypothesis, said Kostrikis, a professor of biological sciences at the University of Cyprus and head of the Laboratory of Biotechnology and Molecular Virology.
What’s more, the samples were processed in multiple sequencing procedures in more than one country. And at least one sequence from Israel deposited in a global database exhibits genetic characteristics of Covid-19 Variant Deltacron, he said.
“These findings refute the undocumented statements that deltacron is a result of a technical error,” Kostrikis said.
Small update: the Cypriot ‘Deltacron’ sequences reported by several large media outlets look to be quite clearly contamination – they do not cluster on a phylogenetic tree and have a whole Artic primer sequencing amplicon of Omicron in an otherwise Delta backbone.— Tom Peacock (@PeacockFlu)January 8, 2022
Health Minister Michael Hadjipantela said Sunday that the new variant isn’t of concern, and more details will be given at a news conference this week, it was reported.
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