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Lambda variant, also known as lineage C.37, is a variant of SARS-CoV-2, the virus that causes COVID-19.It was first detected in Peru in August 2020. On 14 June 2021, the World Health Organization (WHO) named it Lambda variant and designated it as a variant of interest. It has spread to at least 30 countries around the world and is known to be more resistant to neutralizing antibodies compared to other strains. It is also suggested that the Lambda variant could be more infectious and resistant to vaccines than the Alpha and/or Gamma variant.
The Lambda genome has the following amino acid mutations, all of which are in the virus's spike protein code: G75V, T76I, Δ246-252, L452Q, F490S, D614G and T859N.
First samples of the Lambda variant were detected in Peru in August 2020and by April 2021, over eighty percent of new cases of COVID-19 in Peru were from the new variant. In mid-June 2021, 90.6% of new COVID-19 cases in Arequipa and 78.1% of new cases in Cusco were the Lambda variant, according to the Peruvian Ministry of Health. By this time the Lambda variant had also spread throughout South America and was detected in twenty-nine countries in total, especially in Argentina, Chile and Ecuador. The WHO designated the Lambda variant as a "variant of interest" on 14 June 2021.
On 6 July 2021, Australia reported its first case of the Lambda variant in an overseas traveler who had been in a New South Wales quarantine hotel in April.
On 19 July 2021, Texas reported its first case of the Lambda variant.On 22 July 2021, Florida reported 126 cumulative confirmed cases of the Lambda variant. On 28 July 2021, University of Miami researchers announced random sampling showed 3 percent of COVID-19 patients in Jackson Memorial Health System and at University of Miami’s UHealth Tower were infected with it. On 5 August 2021, Louisiana reported its first case of the Lambda variant.
On 7 August 2021, Japan confirmed its first case of the Lambda variant, with the infected person arriving in Japan from Peru on 20 July.
On 15 August 2021, the Philippines confirmed its first case of the Lambda variant.
|Cases by country (Updated as of 23 August 2021) GISAID|
|Country||Confirmed cases||Collection date|
|Chile||1,489||13 July 2021|
|United States||848||5 August 2021|
|Peru||1,480||15 June 2021|
|Ecuador||194||20 July 2021|
|Mexico||189||14 July 2021|
|Spain||124||7 July 2021|
|Argentina||111||24 June 2021|
|Germany||87||13 July 2021|
|France||56||19 July 2021|
|Colombia||51||29 June 2021|
|Israel||25||9 May 2021|
|Switzerland||8||25 July 2021|
|Canada||26||21 June 2021|
|The Netherlands||3||11 July 2021|
|Saint Kitts and Nevis||10||6 June 2021|
|Belgium||2||23 July 2021|
|United Kingdom||8||10 July 2021|
|Italy||12||26 June 2021|
|Brazil||7||21 June 2021|
|India||6||12 April 2021|
|Denmark||1||11 August 2021|
|Sweden||1||15 July 2021|
|South Africa||3||14 July 2021|
|Portugal||1||10 June 2021|
|Qatar||3||13 April 2021|
|Latvia||2||30 April 2021|
|Aruba||2||2 June 2021|
|Bolivia||1||2 June 2021|
|Uruguay||1||15 April 2021|
|Australia||1||3 April 2021|
|Lithuania||1||19 May 2021|
|Norway||1||7 July 2021|
|Estonia||1||1 April 2021|
|Russia||1||21 March 2021|
|Finland||1||31 May 2021|
|Turkey||1||8 February 2021|
|Bangladesh||1||20 March 2021|
|Japan||1||7 August 2021|
|Philippines||1||15 August 2021|
|Venezuela||2||5 May 2021|
|Mayotte||1||15 July 2021|
|El Salvador||3||30 April 2021|
|Guatemala||1||3 July 2021|
|Costa Rica||4||20 July 2021|
|World (44 countries)||Total: 4,763||Total as of 23 August 2021|
GISAID is a global science initiative and primary source established in 2008 that provides open-access to genomic data of influenza viruses and the coronavirus responsible for the COVID-19 pandemic. On January 10, 2020, the first whole-genome sequences of SARS-CoV-2 were made available on GISAID, which enabled global responses to the pandemic, including the development of the first vaccines and diagnostic tests to detect SARS-CoV-2. GISAID facilitates genomic epidemiology and real-time surveillance to monitor the emergence of new COVID-19 viral strains across the planet.
Severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS‑CoV‑2) is the virus that causes COVID-19, the respiratory illness responsible for the COVID-19 pandemic. Also colloquially known simply as the coronavirus, it was previously referred to by its provisional name, 2019 novel coronavirus (2019-nCoV), and has also been called human coronavirus 2019. First identified in the city of Wuhan, Hubei, China, the World Health Organization declared the outbreak a Public Health Emergency of International Concern on 30 January 2020, and a pandemic on 11 March 2020. SARS‑CoV‑2 is a positive-sense single-stranded RNA virus that is contagious in humans. As described by the US National Institutes of Health, it is the successor to SARS-CoV-1, the virus that caused the 2002–2004 SARS outbreak.
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Lambda has been associated with substantive rates of community transmission in multiple countries, with rising prevalence over time concurrent with increased COVID-19 incidence. The earliest sequenced samples were reported from Peru in August 2020.
The Lambda variant also contained a novel deletion (Δ246-252) and multiple nonsynonymous mutations (G75V, T76I, L452Q, F490S, D614G, and T859N) in the gene that encodes the viral spike protein.