Poonam Singh

There is a lot of misinformation spreading on the internet about the Omicron sub-variant BF.7, the Covid strain driving China's current surge of cases. The Ministry of Health took to Twitter to debunk reports surrounding the Covid XBB variant.

There were some news reports speculating that the evolving Omicron sub-variant ‘may be fatal for the brain’

The Health Ministry shared snippets of the media reports about the latest Coronavirus variant and called it "misleading."


The ministry has also asked to be alert to unverified and misleading news and messages on social media platforms.

The Health Ministry also suggested referring to authentic sources of information before sharing any information further.

A look at the reports now termed as Misleading:

According to reports, the new study by scientists is challenging assumptions that viruses become less dangerous as they evolve. Covid-19 may be changing the way to attack the human body and might increasingly make the brain its target instead of the respiratory system, the study reported by South China Morning Post claimed. However, the relevance to humans has not been proven by the study. 

The BF.7 subvariant caused much severe damage to brains of mice and cultured human brain tissues compared to the earlier BA.1 subvariant, claimed researchers from Australia and France. The attack on the brain led to brain inflammation, weight loss and death, the China-based daily reported.

“Compared with BA.1, we found that a BA.5 isolate displayed increased pathogenicity in K18-hACE2 mice with rapid weight loss, brain infection and encephalitis, and mortality. In addition, BA.5 productively infected human brain organoids significantly better than BA.1,” the research manuscript uploaded to preprint platform bioRxiv said.

However, the study is yet to be peer-reviewed and other virus experts have urged caution when reading the results.