The hunt for an unidentified person with the Brazilian variant of coronavirus has been narrowed to 379 households in the South East of England.

To date, six cases of the Manaus variant have been found in the UK – three in Scotland and three in England.

A public appeal has been made for one of those people in England to come forward after they took a test in February but left no contact details.

It is thought the person took a home test, but it is unclear where that the person may be from.

Mr Hancock explained the variant was narrowed down to 379 households in the south-east of England, and each household is being contacted.

Health Secretary Matt Hancock at the Commons said: “We know that five of these six people quarantined at home as they were legally required to do.

“We’re stepping up our testing and sequencing in south Gloucestershire as a precaution.

“Unfortunately, one of these six cases completed a test but didn’t successfully complete the contact details.

“Incidents like this are rare and only occur in around 0.1 per cent of tests.”

He continued: “We’re grateful that a number of potential cases have come forward following the call that we put out over the weekend.

“Our current vaccines have not yet been studied against this variant and we’re working to understand what impact it might have, but we do know that this variant has caused significant challenges in Brazil, so we’re doing all we can to stop the spread of this new variant in the UK, to analyse its effects and to develop an updated vaccine that works on all these variants of concern and protect the progress that we’ve made as a nation.”