Experts in UK urge people to stay alert to new Pirola Covid variant: Report 

A report quoting CNBC said that the Pirola variant coronavirus cases have been detected in Denmark, South Africa, the US, UK, and Israel.

Published: 31st August 2023 07:26 PM  |   Last Updated: 31st August 2023 07:48 PM   |  A+A-

New COVID Variant

Image used for representational purpose only. (Photo | AP)

By Online Desk

Experts have urged Brits to stay alert to the new Pirola Covid variant amid fears it could trigger a fresh wave of infections and overwhelm the National Health Service (NHS).

According to MailOnline, "It comes less than 24 hours after health officials u-turned again on the autumn Covid and flu jab drive start date, bringing it forwards from October to September 11, with some experts already calling to 'vaccinate everyone'". 

Wion reported that a new coronavirus (COVID-19) variant, BA.2.86 (nicknamed 'Pirola' on social media) has been reported in the United States and some other nations. It is said to be highly mutated from more recent versions and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has added it to it watch list after it was added to the WHO's SARS-CoV-2 variant monitoring list.

BA.2.86 (or the Pirola) has caused concerns among some virologists as according to the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention's August 23 risk assessment, some said that it has a large number of mutations, and it may be able to bypass immunity from the vaccine or recent infection with a different variant, Wion said.

A report by The Wall Street Journal, according to Wion, mentioned that the positive cases include people who haven't travelled recently. It indicates that there is community transmission. Concerns have also been raised as the variant has also been detected in wastewater in the US. 

Health officials are spooked by Covid strain, Pirola, that is quickly spreading globally due to its catalogue of mutations, MailOnline said.

BA.2.86 carries an array of more than 30 mutations on its spike protein, which is the part of the virus that vaccines were designed to target. 

Global cases of the Pirola have doubled in the last week and it has now been detected in the UK, US, Israel, Denmark, South Africa, Portugal, Sweden, Canada, Thailand and Switzerland, MailOnline noted.

Follow The New Indian Express channel on WhatsApp


Disclaimer : We respect your thoughts and views! But we need to be judicious while moderating your comments. All the comments will be moderated by the editorial. Abstain from posting comments that are obscene, defamatory or inflammatory, and do not indulge in personal attacks. Try to avoid outside hyperlinks inside the comment. Help us delete comments that do not follow these guidelines.

The views expressed in comments published on are those of the comment writers alone. They do not represent the views or opinions of or its staff, nor do they represent the views or opinions of The New Indian Express Group, or any entity of, or affiliated with, The New Indian Express Group. reserves the right to take any or all comments down at any time.

flipboard facebook twitter whatsapp