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Everything you need to know about the new Covid strain Pirola

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Since the start of the Covid-19 pandemic, we’ve become accustomed to new variants of the virus emerging as it mutates and spreads.

But last month, the UK Health Security Agency (UKHSA) confirmed that the BA.2.86 – since been named Pirola – has made its way to the UK and NHS officials have labelled it the “most concerning variant” since Omicron.

It appears, say scientists, to carry a high number of 'mutations' in its spike protein so they're watching it carefully to see if it manages to evade the immune system.

Pirola was first detected in Denmark on 24 July and, of September, cases had been recorded in several countries, including the USA and Israel.

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