Kuala Lumpur, July 07: Lambda variant, also known as lineage C.37, is a variant of SARS-CoV-2, the virus that causes COVID-19. It was first detected in Peru in December 2020.
On 14 June 2021, the World Health Organization named it Lambda variant and designated it as a variant of interest.
Although the Delta variant of SARS-CoV-2 continues to be the variant responsible for the majority of infections seen across the world, scientists and health experts are growing concerned over Lambda variant which, in June this year, the World Health Organisation (WHO) classified as a ‘variant of interest.’
Citing an Australian news report that said UK researchers were concerned the variant may be ‘more infectious than the Delta variant’, Malaysia’s health ministry took to Twitter to re-iterate that Peru had the highest COVID-19 mortality rate in the world.
“The Lambda strain was reported to have originated from Peru, the country with the highest mortality rate in the world,” the Malaysian health ministry tweeted on Monday.
World Health Organization (WHO) had recently listed lambda variant as the variants of interest.
Lambda, a new Covid strain, found in 29 countries: Symptoms and why is it called as ‘variant of interest’?
The variants are divided into two categories: of interest and of concern. The difference between the two is that those of concern can cause epidemiological problems and the others do not yet have that capacity.
The WHO said it is tracking one more variant of interest, first seen in Peru and called Lambda, which has genetic markers suggesting that it is more transmissible.
It was on 14 June 2021, WHO designated it as Variant of Interest (VOI) and named it Lambda on 31 May 2021.