Botswana investigating new coronavirus mutation detected in four people

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The Botswana Health and Wellness Department says scientists are investigating a new coronavirus mutation detected in four people in the country.

It says through social media platforms that the mutations have been noted as a new sub-variant of Omicron. The ministry says the four cases are currently being monitored to gather more information about the spread and severity of the variant.

The ministry says, together with help from international bodies, it is still studying the characteristics of this omicron sub-lineage, in order to gain more data about its behaviour.

So far, it is not known if the sub-lineage is more deadly and more transmissible than the known Omicron variant. Scientists are also investigating whether COVID-19 vaccines are effective against this sub-lineage.

The ministry stated that the four affected people are fully vaccinated and have been experiencing mild symptoms. The public is urged to vaccinate and take booster shots, if eligible.