SARS-CoV-2 Epsilon variant

Source: Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia.

Countries with confirmed cases of Epsilon variant as of 1 July 2021 (GISAID)
Legend:
  10000+ confirmed sequences
  1000–9999 confirmed sequences
  100–999 confirmed sequences
  10–99 confirmed sequences
  2–9 confirmed sequences
  1 confirmed sequence
  None or no data available

Epsilon variant, also known as CAL.20C and referring to two PANGO lineages B.1.427 and B.1.429, is one of the variants of SARS-CoV-2, the virus that causes COVID-19. It was first detected in California, USA in July 2020.[1]

As of July 2021, Epsilon is no longer considered as a variant of interest by the WHO.[2]

Mutations

The variant has five defining mutations (I4205V and D1183Y in the ORF1ab-gene, and S13I, W152C, L452R in the spike protein's S-gene),[3] of which the L452R (previously also detected in other unrelated lineages) was of particular concern.[4] B.1.429 is possibly more transmissible than previous variants circulating locally, but further study is necessary to confirm this.[4] Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has listed B.1.429 and the related B.1.427 as "variants of concern," and cites a preprint for saying that they exhibit a ~20% increase in viral transmissibility, that they have a "Significant impact on neutralization by some, but not all" therapeutics that have been given Emergency Use Authorization (EUA) by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) for treatment or prevention of COVID-19, and that they moderately reduce neutralization by plasma collected by people who have previously been infected by the virus or who have received a vaccine against the virus.[5][6] In May 2021, the World Health Organization (WHO) gave the variant the new name 'Epsilon variant'.[7]

History

Epsilon (CAL.20C) was first observed in July 2020 by researchers at the Cedars-Sinai Medical Center, California, in one of 1,230 virus samples collected in Los Angeles County since the start of the COVID-19 epidemic.[1] It was not detected again until September when it reappeared among samples in California, but numbers remained very low until November.[9][10] In November 2020, the Epsilon variant accounted for 36 percent of samples collected at Cedars-Sinai Medical Center, and by January 2021, the Epsilon variant accounted for 50 percent of samples.[4] In a joint press release by University of California, San Francisco, California Department of Public Health, and Santa Clara County Public Health Department,[11] it was announced that the variant was also detected in multiple counties in Northern California. From November to December 2020, the frequency of the variant in sequenced cases from Northern California rose from 3% to 25%.[12] In a preprint, CAL.20C is described as belonging to Nextstrain clade 20C and contributing approximately 36% of samples, while an emerging variant from the 20G clade accounts for some 24% of the samples in a study focused on Southern California. Note however that in the US as a whole, the 20G clade predominates, as of January 2021. Following the increasing numbers of Epsilon in California, the variant has been detected at varying frequencies in most US states. Small numbers have been detected in other countries in North America, and in Europe, Asia and Australia.[9][10] As of July 2021, the Epsilon variant had been detected in 45 countries, according to GISAID.[13] After an initial increase, its frequency rapidly dropped from February 2021 as it was being outcompeted by the more transmissible Alpha variant. In April, Epsilon remained relatively frequent in parts of northern California, but it had virtually disappeared from the south of the state and had never been able to establish a foothold elsewhere; only 3.2% of all cases in the United States were Epsilon, whereas by then more than two-thirds were Alpha.[14]

Statistics

Cases by country (Updated as of 1 July 2021) GISAID[15]
Country Confirmed cases Last Reported Case
USA 50,723 23 June 2021
Mexico 474 08 June 2021
Canada 326 07 May 2021
South Korea 103 26 April 2021
Aruba 57 24 April 2021
Denmark 37 22 March 2021
Chile 30 07 June 2021
Argentina 28 12 May 2021
United Kingdom 21 10 May 2021
Japan 20 16 April 2021
Australia 20 12 April 2021
Costa Rica 12 05 May 2021
Germany 10 08 June 2021
Israel 10 25 February 2021
Guam 8 27 March 2021
Taiwan 8 31 January 2021
Guatemala 7
France 7 01 March 2021
Ireland 7 28 April 2021
Netherlands 5 10 March 2021
Spain 5 03 June 2021
New Zealand 4 28 December 2020
Singapore 4 27 March 2021
Switzerland 4 01 March 2021
Cameroon 3 05 February 2021
Guadeloupe 3 30 January 2021
Norway 3 12 April 2021
Cambodia 2 20 January 2021
Finland 2 06 February 2021
Italy 2 11 February 2021
Peru 2 24 February 2021
Sweden 2 28 January 2021
Turkey 2 11 February 2021
Turks and Caicos Islands 2 22 March 2021
Colombia 2 08 January 2021
Anguilla 1 19 March 2021
Antigua and Barbuda 1 24 April 2021
Barbados 1 12 April 2021
Belgium 1 18 January 2021
British Virgin Islands 1 07 January 2021
Curacao 1 19 March 2021
India 1 02 March 2021
North Macedonia 1 26 January 2021
Northern Mariana Islands 1 16 January 2021
Sint Maarten 1 16 February 2021
Dominican Republic 1
World (46 countries) Total: 51,966 Total as of 1 July 2021

See also

References

  1. ^ a b "Local COVID-19 Strain Found in Over One-Third of Los Angeles Patients". news wise (Press release). California: Cedars Sinai Medical Center. January 19, 2021. Retrieved March 3, 2021.
  2. ^ "Tracking SARS-CoV-2 variants". who.int. World Health Organization.
  3. ^ Spike Variants: Epsilon, aka B.1.427/B.1.429, and CAL.20C/S:452R covdb.stanford.edu, accessed 3 July 2021
  4. ^ a b c "New California Variant May Be Driving Virus Surge There, Study Suggests". The New York Times. January 19, 2021.
  5. ^ "SARS-CoV-2 Variant Classifications and Definitions". CDC.gov. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. March 24, 2021. Retrieved April 4, 2021.
  6. ^ Shen X, Tang H, Pajon R, Smith G, Glenn GM, Shi W, et al. (April 2021). "Neutralization of SARS-CoV-2 Variants B.1.429 and B.1.351". The New England Journal of Medicine. 384 (24): 2352–2354. doi:10.1056/NEJMc2103740. PMC 8063884. PMID 33826819.
  7. ^ Helen Branswell The name game for coronavirus variants just got a little easier 31 May 2021 www.statnews.com, accessed 28 June 2021
  8. ^ "Spike Variants: Epsilon variant, aka B.1.427/B.1.429". covdb.stanford.edu. Stanford University Coronavirus Antiviral & Resistance Database. July 1, 2021. Retrieved July 5, 2021.
  9. ^ a b "B.1.429". Rambaut Group, University of Edinburgh. PANGO Lineages. February 15, 2021. Retrieved February 16, 2021.
  10. ^ a b "B.1.429 Lineage Report". Scripps Research. outbreak.info. February 15, 2021. Retrieved February 16, 2021.
  11. ^ "COVID-19 Variant First Found in Other Countries and States Now Seen More Frequently in California". California Department of Public Health. Retrieved January 30, 2021.
  12. ^ Weise E, Weintraub K. "New strains of COVID swiftly moving through the US need careful watch, scientists say". USA Today. Retrieved January 30, 2021.
  13. ^ "Watching the new Epsilon variant of SARS-CoV-2". Healthcare Purchasing News. Retrieved September 12, 2021. According to GISAID, 45 countries, from US to South Korea, from India to Japan have reported Epsilon variant cases.
  14. ^ Zimmer, Carl; Mandavilli, Apoorva (May 14, 2021). "How the United States Beat the Variants, for Now". New York Times. Retrieved May 17, 2021.
  15. ^ "GISAID - hCov19 Variants". www.gisaid.org. Retrieved July 2, 2021.