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January 27, 2023, 16:05

First case of ‘Kraken’ COVID recorded in Ukraine: it is transmitted 8% faster than regular Omicron subvariants and bypasses the immune response — Health Ministry

As of today, 12 different subtypes of the Omicron variant of the coronavirus infection have been recorded in Ukraine. One of them is the so-called ‘Kraken.’ Ihor Kuzin, Chief State Sanitary Doctor, Deputy Minister of Health of Ukraine, made this statement at a briefing at Media Center Ukraine — Ukrinform.

“On January 23, the first case of a new subvariant XBB1.5. infection, sometimes called Kraken, was recorded in Sumy region. The (infected) man had not travelled outside of Ukraine. The person fully recovered, the course of the disease was of medium severity. The subvariant has no specific symptoms, but there are certain immunological and virological features. This subvariant is the most effective at escaping the immune response. It has a tendency to an increased infection rate, as it spreads 8% faster than average Omicron subvariants. But currently there is no convincing evidence that it can occur in a severe form, that it is more aggressive, that it causes higher mortality rates or can cause a higher percentage of co-morbidities,” — Kuzin said.

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