The Phuket News Novosti Phuket Khao Phuket

Login | Create Account | Search

XE wave ‘likely to be mild’

BANGKOK: The Public Health Ministry yesterday (Apr 3) played down concerns raised by the detection of the first case of the XE COVID-19 strain in the country, saying there is no need to panic as it is not believed to result in as many complications as some previous mutations.

By Bangkok Post

Monday 4 April 2022, 09:41AM

A health professional vaccinates a girl against COVID-19 at a shopping centre in Bangkok on Mar 17. Photo: Somchai Poomlard

A health professional vaccinates a girl against COVID-19 at a shopping centre in Bangkok on Mar 17. Photo: Somchai Poomlard

The head of the Centre for Medical Genomics (CMG) at Ramathibodi Hospital, which diagnosed the patient found with the strain, said the individual had already made a full recovery, reports the Bangkok Post.

The rising number of COVID-19 strains only fuels the rapidity of genomic variation as has been evidenced recently by the emergence of Deltacron, a recombinant virus that contains genes from both Delta and Omicron variants, said Dr Supakit Sirilak, director-general of the Department of Medical Sciences (DMS).

In this case, XE is a recombinant virus of two sublineages of the Omicron variant, BA.1 and BA.2, he said, in response to reports about the detection of the first XE case, which was revealed on Saturday by the CMG.

The DMS is performing genomic sequencing on about 500 virus samples a week, he said, adding the DMS will hold a press briefing today to provide more information about the XE case and its broader implications.

The World Health Organization (WHO) had also on Saturday issued a warning over the XE Omicron variant that many in the medical field fear could be the most transmissible yet.

The XE recombinant was first detected in the UK on Jan 19 and less than 600 sequences have been reported and confirmed since, the WHO said.

Wasun Chantratita, the head of the CMG, said they normally receive virus samples for testing about a week after an infection is confirmed, which explains why by the time the results are known, most patients have already nearly recovered.

Internal - Phuket Live Radio 89.5

Anan Jongkaewwattana, an expert with the National Centre for Genetic Engineering and Biotechnology (Biotec), meanwhile, said those who had already been infected with the sub-variant BA.2 of Omicron may already carry some immunity due to the similarities between the pair BA.2. “Don’t be more afraid of XE than BA.2 as that strain has already been around town,” he said.

Considering a rise in number of patients developing severe symptoms when infected with COVID-19 after a fourth booster shot, he said he recommends delaying seeking further appointments for booster shots until a newer generation of the vaccine is available.

Immunity generated by multiple vaccines may even have an adverse effect and lead to more severe inflammation in those who catch the virus after their shots, he said.

For those who already had two rounds of an inactivated type of COVID-19 vaccine, two more booster shots of other types may be needed, while those who had started with two shots of other types of the vaccine may need only one booster shot for now, he said.

The Centre for COVID-19 Situation Administration (CCSA) yesterday (Apr 3) recorded 26,840 new cases and 97 deaths.

In another development, the National Health Security Office (NHSO) said it is preparing for an expected rise in the number of new COVID-19 patients in the coming weeks. The Songkran festival is thought to be a risk factor in leading to an increase in cases.

Priority in terms of both times given by doctors and specialists as well as access to treatment will be given to new elderly patients, particularly those with underlying health conditions that may exacerbate their symptoms, and children, said NHSO secretary-general Dr Jadej Thammatacharees.

Comment on this story

* Please login to comment. If you do not have an account please register below by simply entering a username, password and email address. You can still leave your comment below at the same time.


Kurt | 05 April 2022 - 12:40:13

Wait and see or Government is not in panic! Let them prove that by opening Thailand completely for tourism, skipping idiot meassures, including crazy bureaucratic Thailand Pass happening. Declare Covid as being 'Endemic' NOW! Lift Thai people, now in poverty, to normal life again. The Thai Officials don't  come further that just photograph themselve with handing out goodies so far.

agoghome | 04 April 2022 - 17:00:31

To have, or not have a 4th Booster. That is the question! 


Have a news tip-off? Click here


Phuket community
Ukrainians arrested in Phuket, face extradition for offences in US

No one is claiming ALL Ukrainians are angels but, plenty are claiming Putin is harming his country...(Read More)

Public split on pension payout

First question is: Is the present monthly paid pension amount to pensioners enough to live on? If th...(Read More)

Missing German tourist found safe

Her family are at fault for not supervising her better, knowing about her condition it is unacceptab...(Read More)

Female students face police over vicious attack on 11-year-old

Sadly it is a worldwide tragedy that youth nowadays have no respect for anyone and behave like littl...(Read More)

When Sharks Attack: Three easy steps to survive and thrive in the ocean

Sound advice , I dive with sharks regularly magical experience if you understand their behavior they...(Read More)

Missing German tourist rescued from Phuket jungle recovering well

Great news! Found her just 2 km distance from the hotel! So she was on her way back?That 15 km CCTV ...(Read More)

Sustainably Yours: Make money and be more sustainable

Great article for the Thai Minister of Environment to chew on. Does Thailand actually have a Minist...(Read More)

Violence clouds Jerusalem funeral of Al Jazeera journalist

Maybe the title should have been 'Police violence'- I was disgusted to see their behavior. A...(Read More)

Ukrainians arrested in Phuket, face extradition for offences in US

Hmm, surely some mistake. These brave men should have enlisted in the Ukrainian forces by now. ...(Read More)

Helicopter to join search for German tourist

JohnC@ very insensitive comment especially as she has now been safe Thai’s are very caring towards...(Read More)