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FLiRT Variant of COVID-19 Sparks Urgent Response from Ecuadorian and US Doctors

Published on May 13, 2024

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Ecuadorian doctors are stressing the urgent need for a proactive response to the emergence of the FLiRT variant of the coronavirus.

Despite its presence not being officially confirmed in Ecuador, medical experts are already offering recommendations to prepare for the arrival of the FLiRT variant of COVID-19, based on its reported characteristics.

FLiRT stands out for its notable impact on taste and smell, potentially leading to alterations or complete loss, alongside a spectrum of other symptoms such as fever, headache, and sore throat.

This variant, arising from the Omicron lineage, is already prevalent in countries like the United States and Italy, responsible for a substantial portion of new COVID-19 cases.

FLiRT, an acronym for “Escape from T-cell recognition and Immune-Humoral Response from Ómicron lineages,” encompasses subvariants like KP.2, which is becoming predominant. The concern lies in its ability to evade immune responses, potentially affecting the effectiveness of existing vaccines and treatments.

Despite the absence of confirmed severity, there’s a call for vigilance and preparedness within Ecuador’s healthcare system. While cross-protection from previous variants like JN.1 might exist, staying proactive in epidemiological surveillance is crucial. This vigilance extends to the population, emphasizing continued COVID-19 precautions and avoiding unnecessary exposure, particularly as FLiRT’s emergence coincides with the distribution of updated vaccines, like those from Moderna.

Concerns over potential to spread rapidly

Meanwhile, in the United States, FLiRT KP.2 is causing significant concern, responsible for a quarter of new COVID-19 cases. The variant, surpassing its predecessor JN.1 in prevalence, poses a heightened risk due to its highly transmissible nature. While its symptoms mirror those of earlier mutations, including sore throat, cough, and loss of taste or smell, its potential for rapid spread warrants cautious monitoring and updated vaccination strategies.

Both Ecuadorian and US health authorities emphasize the importance of not underestimating the threat posed by FLiRT variants. While research continues into their specific characteristics and response to vaccines, maintaining public health measures and remaining adaptable in vaccine distribution strategies are paramount in mitigating the impact of these evolving variants on global health.

Amid these concerns, it’s essential to consider the broader implications of FLiRT variants on international travel and commerce. As countries grapple with balancing public health imperatives and economic interests, coordinated efforts in surveillance, vaccine development, and cross-border cooperation are vital to address the ongoing challenges posed by these mutating strains.

Furthermore, the emergence of FLiRT variants underscores the importance of ongoing scientific research and global collaboration in understanding and combatting the COVID-19 pandemic. By sharing data, resources, and expertise, the international community can better prepare for and respond to future viral threats, ensuring the health and well-being of populations worldwide.

1 Comment

  1. BS on steroids!Covid was not a pandemic , but Con roll entities use it for fear and manipulation which works soooo well!Be informed with real data not manipulated buffonery.


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