COVID-19 Variants Could Be Named After Constellations Once Greek Alphabet Runs Out, WHO Official Says

COVID-19 Variants Could Be Named After Constellations Once Greek Alphabet Runs Out, WHO Official Says

New strains of coronavirus could be named after constellations once the Greek alphabet runs out, a World Health Organization (WHO) boss has suggested.

Maria Van Kerkhove, l’OMS COVID-19[feminine[feminine technical manager, also warned that it is “possible” that new variants emerge that escape vaccines.

The agency began naming the new mutations after the letters of the Greek alphabet in May.

So far, 11 variants have been named, including the Delta, Beta and Alpha strains.

Dr Maria Van Kerkhove of the World Health Organization

Dr Van Kerkhove told The Telegraph that the WHO is looking for new names in case they go through the 24 letters of the Greek alphabet.

For the moment, constellations are being considered.

This means coronavirus the variants could be named after constellations such as Orion, Leo, Gemini, and Aries.

Dr Van Kerkhove told the newspaper: “We may run out of the Greek alphabet, but we are already looking at the next set of names.

“We’re actually looking at constellations of stars. We were going to choose some Greek gods or goddesses, and I said please, please don’t make me say that publicly. “

WHO is considering proposals to make sure no one is upset with the names, she added.

She previously warned that naming variations after where they were first identified can end up “stigmatizing” a country or place.

Last year, she applied for a naming system to prevent this from happening.

Meanwhile, she said new variants that escape measures like vaccines are a “real threat.”

That is why it is “critical” that countries do not rely solely on jabs, but “do all we can” to reduce transmission, she added.

The WHO official also warned that a dangerous new mutation is more likely to emerge in places with intense transmission rates, in animal populations or in areas with high vaccination rates where COVID is still circulating. widely.

It comes after an early scan Suggested coronavirus levels in people with the Delta strain may be similar regardless of whether or not they had the jab.


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