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28 febrero, 2022

SARS-CoV-2 variants of concern as of 24 February 2022

ECDC regularly assesses new evidence on variants detected through epidemic intelligence, rules-based genomic variant screening, or other scientific sources. If a decision is made to add, remove, or change the category for any variant, the tables are updated to reflect this change. The tables are regularly sent for consultation to ECDC and WHO Regional Office for Europe’s joint virus characterisation working group. The rules-based genomic screening is performed using an open source algorithm. The weekly ECDC variant surveillance data report can be found in the weekly COVID-19 country overviews published on ECDC’s website.

More information on variants is available on

  • the variants dashboard
  • the variants tab on the country overviews
  • the Omicron variant timeline

Description of the tables

The tables include:

Category: variant of concern (VOC), variant of interest (VOI), or variant under monitoring (VUM) (see definition above each table). Note that it is a possible for a VOC, VOI or VUM to also be a part of a broader VOC, VOI, or VUM definition, e.g. B.1.617.2+E484X is also a part of B.1.617.2, this means that there is enough evidence to fulfil the VOC, VOI or VUM criteria for this variant using the broader variant as a reference.

  1. WHO label: As of 31st May 2021, WHO proposed labels for global SARS-CoV-2 variants of concern and variants of interest to be used alongside the scientific nomenclature in communications about variants to the public. This list includes variants on WHO’s global list of VOC and VOI, and is updated as WHO’s list changes.
  2. Lineage and additional mutations: the variant designation specified by one or more Pango lineages and any additional characteristic spike protein changes. An alternate description may be used if the variant is not easy to describe using this nomenclature. For updated information on Pango lineages and definition of lineages and for instructions on how to suggest new lineages, visit the Pango lineages website. Each lineage in then table is linked to the respective lineage page on the Pango lineages website.
  3. Country first detected: only present if there is moderate confidence in the evidence relating to the first country of detection.
  4. Spike mutations of interest: not all spike protein amino acid changes are included – this is not a full reference for assignment of the variants. It includes changes to spike protein residues 319-541 (receptor binding domain) and 613-705 (the S1 part of the S1/S2 junction and a small stretch on the S2 side), and any additional unusual changes specific to the variant.
  5. Year and month first detected: as reported in the GISAID EpiCoV database. This can be adjusted backwards in time if new retrospective detections are made.
  6. Evidence concerning properties in three different categories:
    • Transmissibility
    • Immunity
    • Infection severity
      Each category is annotated as increased, reduced, similar, unclear, or no evidence depending on the currently available evidence. Increased or reduced means that there is evidence demonstrating that the property is different enough for the variant compared to previously circulating variants that it is likely to have an impact on the epidemiological situation in the EU/EEA. Similar means that there is evidence that demonstrates that the property is not different enough for this variant compared to previously circulating variants that it is unlikely to have an impact. Unclear means that the current evidence is preliminary or contradictory enough to make the assessment uncertain. No evidence means that no evidence has yet been evaluated for this category. The evidence is further annotated with v or m to indicate whether the evidence is available for the variant itself (v) or for mutations associated with the variant (m).
  7. Transmission in the EU/EEA: categorised as dominant, community, outbreak(s), and sporadic/travel. The categories are qualitative, and the assessment is based on surveillance data collected in TESSy, GISAID EpiCoV data, epidemic intelligence data, and direct communications with the affected countries.

Variants of Concern (VOC)

For these variants, clear evidence is available indicating a significant impact on transmissibility, severity and/or immunity that is likely to have an impact on the epidemiological situation in the EU/EEA. The combined genomic, epidemiological, and in-vitro evidence for these properties invokes at least moderate confidence. In addition, all the criteria for variants of interest and under monitoring outlined below apply.

WHO label Lineage + additional mutations Country first detected (community) Spike mutations of interest Year and month first detected Impact on transmissibility Impact on immunity Impact on severity Transmission in EU/EEA

Beta

B.1.351 South Africa K417N, E484K, N501Y, D614G, A701V September 2020 Increased (v) (1) Increased (v) (2, 3) Increased (v) (4, 5) Community

Gamma

P.1 Brazil K417T, E484K, N501Y, D614G, H655Y December 2020 Increased (v) (6) Increased (v) (7) Increased (v) (5) Community

Delta

B.1.617.2 India L452R, T478K, D614G, P681R December 2020 Increased (v) (8) Increased (v) (9-11) Increased (v) (10, 12) Community
Omicron
B.1.1.529
South Africa and Botswana (x) November 2021 Increased (v) (13, 14) Increased (v) (15-21) Reduced (v) (22-27) Dominant

x: A67V, Δ69-70, T95I, G142D, Δ143-145, N211I, Δ212, ins215EPE, G339D, S371L, S373P, S375F, K417N, N440K, G446S, S477N, T478K, E484A, Q493R, G496S, Q498R, N501Y, Y505H, T547K, D614G, H655Y, N679K, P681H, N764K, D796Y, N856K, Q954H, N969K, L981F

All sub-lineages of the listed lineages are also included in the variant, e.g., BA.2 is included in Omicron as it is a sub-lineage of B.1.1.529.

Variants of Interest (VOI)

For these variants, evidence is available on genomic properties, epidemiological evidence or in-vitro evidence that could imply a significant impact on transmissibility, severity and/or immunity, realistically having an impact on the epidemiological situation in the EU/EEA. However, the evidence is still preliminary or is associated with major uncertainty. In addition, all the criteria for variants under monitoring outlined below apply. There are currently no variants of interest.

Variants under monitoring

These additional variants of SARS-CoV-2 have been detected as signals through epidemic intelligence, rules-based genomic variant screening, or preliminary scientific evidence. There is some indication that they could have properties similar to those of a VOC, but the evidence is weak or has not yet been assessed by ECDC. Variants listed here must be present in at least one outbreak, detected in a community within the EU/EEA, or there must be evidence that there is community transmission of the variant elsewhere in the world.

WHO label Lineage + additional mutations Country first detected (community) Spike mutations of interest Year and month first detected Impact on transmissibility Impact on immunity Impact on severity Transmission in EU/EEA
n/a B.1.640 The Republic of Congo D614G, F490R, N394S, N501Y, P681H, R346S, Y449N, 137−145del September 2021 No evidence No evidence No evidence Detected (a)

n/a: not applicable, no WHO label has been assigned to this variant at this time

All sub-lineages of the listed lineages are also included in the variant, e.g., B.1.640.1 is included in B.1.640 as it is a sub-lineage of it.

De-escalated variants

These additional variants of SARS-CoV-2 have been de-escalated based on at least one the following criteria: (1) the variant is no longer circulating, (2) the variant has been circulating for a long time without any impact on the overall epidemiological situation, (3) scientific evidence demonstrates that the variant is not associated with any concerning properties.

WHO label Lineage + additional mutations Country first detected (community) Spike mutations of interest Year and month first detected Impact on transmissibility Impact on immunity Impact on severity Rationale for de-escalation

Alpha

B.1.1.7 United Kingdom N501Y, D614G, P681H September 2020 Increased (v) (28) Similar Increased (v) (5, 29) Drastically reduced circulation in the EU/EEA following the emergence of Delta; little evidence of impact on vaccine induced immunity

n/a

B.1.1.7+E484K United Kingdom E484K, N501Y, D614G, P681H December 2020 Increased (v) (28) Increased (v) (30, 31) Increased (v) (29) Very low levels of circulation in the EU/EEA
Epsilon B.1.427/B.1.429 USA L452R, D614G September 2020 Unclear (32) Increased (v) (32) No evidence No longer detected or detected at extremely low levels in the EU/EEA and available data indicating that vaccines and treatments are effective against such variant
n/a B.1.616(c) France V483A, D614G, H655Y, G669S February 2021 Detection (c) (33) No evidence No evidence Not detected since 2021-04-23 (34)
Eta B.1.525 Nigeria E484K, D614G, Q677H December 2020 No evidence Increased (m) (30, 35) No evidence   No longer detected or detected at extremely low levels in the EU/EEA
Theta P.3 The Philippines E484K, N501Y, D614G, P681H January 2021 Increased (m) (28) Increased (m) (30) No evidence No longer detected or detected at extremely low levels in the EU/EEA
Kappa B.1.617.1 India L452R, E484Q, D614G, P681R December 2020 Increased (v) (36) Increased (v) (37-40) No evidence No longer detected or detected at extremely low levels in the EU/EEA
n/a B.1.620 Unclear (b) S477N, E484K, D614G, P681H February 2021 No evidence Increased (m) (30, 41) No evidence No longer detected or detected at extremely low levels in the EU/EEA
n/a B.1.617.3 India L452R, E484Q, D614G, P681R February 2021 Increased (m) [1] Increased (m) (30, 32) No evidence No longer detected or detected at extremely low levels in the EU/EEA
n/a B.1.214.2 Unclear2 Q414K, N450K, ins214TDR, D614G December 2020 No evidence No evidence No evidence No longer detected or detected at extremely low levels in the EU/EEA
n/a A.23.1+E484K United Kingdom V367F, E484K, Q613H December 2020 No evidence Increased (m) (30) No evidence No longer detected or detected at extremely low levels in the EU/EEA
n/a A.27 Unclear (b) L452R, N501Y, A653V, H655Y December 2020 Increased (m) (28) Increased (m) (32) No evidence No longer detected or detected at extremely low levels in the EU/EEA
n/a A.28 Unclear (b) E484K, N501T, H655Y December 2020 No evidence Increased (m) (30) No evidence No longer detected or detected at extremely low levels in the EU/EEA
n/a C.16 Unclear (b) L452R, D614G October 2020 No evidence Increased (m) (30) No evidence No longer detected or detected at extremely low levels in the EU/EEA
n/a B.1.351+P384L South Africa P384L, K417N, E484K, N501Y, D614G, A701V December 2020 Increased (v) (1) Increased (v) (2, 3) Unclear (4) No longer detected or detected at extremely low levels in the EU/EEA
n/a B.1.351+E516Q Unclear (b) K417N, E484K, N501Y, E516Q, D614G, A701V January 2021 Increased (v) (1) Increased (v) (2, 3) Unclear (4) No longer detected or detected at extremely low levels in the EU/EEA
n/a B.1.1.7+L452R United Kingdom L452R, N501Y, D614G, P681H January 2021 Increased (v) (28) Increased (m) (32) Increased (v) (29) No longer detected or detected at extremely low levels in the EU/EEA
n/a B.1.1.7+S494P United Kingdom S494P, N501Y, D614G, P681H January 2021 Increased (v) (28) Increased (m) (42) Increased (v) (29) No longer detected or detected at extremely low levels in the EU/EEA
Iota B.1.526 USA  E484K, D614G, A701V December 2020 No evidence Increased (m) (30) No evidence No longer detected or detected at extremely low levels in the EU/EEA
n/a B.1.526.1 USA L452R, D614G October 2020 No evidence Increased (m) (32) No evidence Lineage withdrawn from Pango
n/a B.1.526.2 USA S477N, D614G December 2020 No evidence No evidence No evidence Lineage withdrawn from Pango
Zeta P.2 Brazil E484K, D614G January 2021 No evidence Increased (m) (30) No evidence No longer detected or detected at extremely low levels in the EU/EEA
n/a B.1.1.519 Mexico T478K, D614G November 2020 No evidence Increased (m) (32) No evidence No longer detected or detected at extremely low levels in the EU/EEA
n/a AV.1 United Kingdom N439K, E484K, D614G, P681H March 2021 No evidence Increased (m) (30) No evidence No longer detected or detected at extremely low levels in the EU/EEA
n/a AT.1 Russia E484K, D614G, N679K, ins679GIAL January 2021 No evidence Increased (m) (30) No evidence No longer detected or detected at extremely low levels in the EU/EEA
n/a C.36+L452R Egypt L452R, D614G, Q677H December 2020 No evidence Increased (m) (32) No evidence No longer detected or detected at extremely low levels in the EU/EEA
n/a P.1+P681H Italy D614G, E484K, H655Y, K417T, N501Y, P681H February 2021 No evidence Unclear (43, 44) No evidence No longer detected or detected at extremely low levels in the EU/EEA
Mu B.1.621 Colombia R346K, E484K, N501Y, D614G, P681H January 2021 Increased (m) (28) Increased (m) (30) No evidence No longer detected or detected at extremely low levels in the EU/EEA
Lambda C.37 Peru L452Q, F490S, D614G December 2020 No evidence Increased (v) (45, 46) No evidence No longer detected or detected at extremely low levels in the EU/EEA
n/a AY.4.2 United Kingdom L452R, T478K, D614G, P681R, A222V, Y145H June 2021 Increased (v) (47) Similar (v) (47, 48) Similar (v) (47) Delta sub-lineages will continue to be monitored within Delta VOC
n/a B.1.1.318 Unclear (b) E484K, D614G, P681H January 2021 No evidence Increased (m) (30) No evidence No longer detected or detected at extremely low levels in the EU/EEA
n/a B.1.617.2 + K417N United Kingdom L452R, T478K, D614G, P681R, K417N June 2021 No evidence No evidence No evidence Delta sub-lineages will continue to be monitored within Delta VOC
n/a C.1.2 South Africa D614G, E484K, H655Y, N501Y, N679K, Y449H June 2021 Increased (m) (28) Increased (m) (30) No evidence No longer detected or detected at extremely low levels in the EU/EEA
n/a B.1.617.2 + E484X (d) India L452R, T478K, D614G, P681R, E484X (d) April 2021 No evidence No evidence No evidence Delta sub-lineages will continue to be monitored within Delta VOC
n/a B.1.617.2 + Q613H India L452R, T478K, D614G, P681R, Q613H April 2021 No evidence No evidence No evidence Delta sub-lineages will continue to be monitored within Delta VOC
n/a B.1.617.2 + Q677H India L452R, T478K, D614G, P681R, Q677H April 2021 No evidence No evidence No evidence Delta sub-lineages will continue to be monitored within Delta VOC

n/a: not applicable, no WHO label has been assigned to this variant at this time

All sub-lineages of the listed lineages are also included in the variant, e.g., B.1.429.1 is included in B.1.427/B.1.429 as it is a sub-lineage of B.1.429.

(a) No assessment of transmission is given for variants in the monitoring category, only detected/not detected.

(b) The earliest detections from several different countries are close in time and there is no clearly demonstrated travel link to a specific country that explains the detections.

(c) The property of concern for this variant was the fact that there are reports of difficulties associated with detecting it in upper respiratory tract samples. These difficulties were not caused by primer-template mismatch but rather by the virus not being present in sufficient quantities in the upper respiratory tract.

(d) Any amino acid substitution

https://www.ecdc.europa.eu/en/covid-19/variants-concern


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