XBB.1.5 is arguably more portable
A new corona variant is spreading in America
XBB.1.5 is a new variant of the coronavirus that is already responsible for nearly half of all new infections in the United States. The situation is also present in Germany.
The new Omikron variant XBB.1.5 is spreading rapidly in the US.
In the United States, a significant proportion of new corona infections can be traced to the XBB.1.5 variant, which was recently discovered. The CDC estimated that XBB.1.5 accounted for 40.5 percent of all new infections in the week before the start of the year.
According to the CDC, the variant is more easily reversible. “We have been monitoring XBB.1.5 since mid-November, and its frequency is doubling every week,” Richard Nehr, head of the Evolution of Viruses and Bacteria research group at the University of Basel’s Biozentrum, told the German Press Agency. .
There are no indications for severe courses
The variant is characterized by the mutation F486P in the so-called spike protein. It is the part of the virus that uses it to attach to human cells. “This mutation may enhance binding to the ACE2 receptor in human cells. What this means is not clear,” emphasized Neher. He knew of no signs that XBB.1.5 could lead to more severe disease progression. Federal Health Minister Karl Lauterbach (SPD) wrote on Twitter about the US numbers: “You have to see it.”
The variant XBB.1.5, associated with the Omicron subvariant BA.2, was not mentioned in the Robert Koch Institute’s latest Corona Weekly report. However, the report was published on December 22. (SDA/chs)
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