UW Medicine finds BA.2 subvariant in 25% of new COVID cases

Photo Courtesy UW Medicine

SEATTLE, Wash. — A brand new omicron subvariant accountable for a wave of latest COVID-19 circumstances in Europe in Asia might sweep the U.S. quickly.

The BA.2 variant at present accounts for about 25 p.c of latest COVID-19 circumstances sequenced by the UW Medicine Clinical Virology Laboratory.

The lab first detected BA.2 in early January, not figuring out a lot of its contagiousness or severity. The variant is accountable for practically 35 p.c of latest infections nationally, in line with knowledge from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

“It’s been sort of slowly creeping up over the last six weeks,” mentioned Dr. Alex Greninger, UW Medicine’s virology lab assistant director.

Scientists imagine the U.S. is due for an uptick in BA.2 variant circumstances within the coming weeks or months.

“It’s going to be interesting to see what the end of April, beginning of May, what that time period will look like,” mentioned Greninger.

He is hopeful {that a} potential wave of latest circumstances brought on by BA.2 gained’t eclipse that of the unique omicron variant. Emerging knowledge present individuals who have been lately contaminated with omicron are doubtless protected in opposition to a BA.2 an infection.

More analysis finds booster photographs proceed to offer their recipients a leg up in avoiding a significant COVID-19 sickness, together with from BA.2.

READ: Scientists fear virus variant might push up COVID circumstances in US

READ: UW Medicine research says breakthrough infections considerably strengthen antibodies

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