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Coronavirus: “Highly Contagious” Subvariants of Omicron Found In China

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New cases of Coronavirus’ Omicron subvariants are being reported in China. Highly infectious subvariants of Omicron-BF.7 and BA.5.1.7-have been reported in various provinces. These subvariants have greater transmissibility.

A report by China’s tabloid Global Times read, “New Omicron variant BF.7 has swept to more provinces in China on Monday, less than a week after it was first identified in Northwest China’s Inner Mongolia Autonomous Region.” According to the report, BF.7 was detected on October 4 in Yantai and Shaoguan city. BF.7 is also called B.1.1.529.

As China is seeing a growing number of cases in more of its cities, experts have warned of their “fast-spreading speed.” The media report said that BF.7 has intensified the ability for immune evasion more than its parental strain. Also, Omicron and its sub-variants, being highly contagious, are better equipped with immunity-avoiding properties.

BF.7 is fast spreading in other countries such as Belgium, France, Denmark, and England. The Chinese government believes that Omicron subvariants started a chain of rapid transmission that has caused an increase in recent COVID-19 infections. Li Shujian, deputy director of a Chinese disease prevention and control center, said that two “highly contagious” variants can easily evade previous immunity.

According to information provided by the US CDC, 4.6% of all active COVID cases in the US are attributable to BF.7. The top two most contagious COVID variations are still BA.5 and BA.4.6, with BF.7 taking the third position.

In addition to these subvariants, BA.2.75 and BA.4 represent 1.8% and 0.8% of all instances in the US, respectively. This definitely shows that BF.7 is taking hold and may soon surpass the other two editions.

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