New Summer COVID-19 Strain LB.1 Spreading Fast Across the US; Leaves Experts Worried

A new COVID-19 summer wave is on a significant rise across the western states in the US, the CDC has warned. According to the federal data, a new variant called LB.1 could be on track to become the latest dominant strain of the virus. Read on to know more.
New summer COVID-19 variant in the US

CDC says the main virus indicators are worsening fastest across western states, where trends began climbing this month

A new summer wave of COVID-19 infections arriving earlier than last year is spreading fast across the US, according to federal data. The new variant, called LB.1, could be on track to become the latest dominant strain of the virus, experts fear.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has estimated that for the first time in months, no states or territories have seen COVID-19 infections slow this past week. According to the country's main health organization, the main virus indicators seem to be worsening fastest across western states, where trends began climbing this month.

COVID-19 cases rising among western states

CDC says the levels of virus detections in wastewater – most of the time an early signal of rising COVID-19 cases, are already near the threshold, showcasing "high" levels of infection risk. Nursing home COVID-19 cases have also accelerated in recent weeks from this region.
According to experts, there has been a significant rise of around 1.23 per cent of emergency hospital visits from COVID-19 patients in HHS Region 9 - a grouping of states that spans Arizona through Hawaii – the worst average in the region since early February. Health authorities say the previous data shows that there is always a surge in summertime COVID-19 cases, after a spring lull.
Last year, trends of the virus picked up around the end of August and early September, around the same time officials began rolling out a new COVID-19 vaccine shot. "For flu and RSV, we have years and years of data with very similar trends over time. So, you can't quite set your watch by when those seasons are going to start, but you can get close. For COVID, that's not true at all," Ruth Link-Gelles, head of the CDC's COVID-19 vaccine effectiveness research told a Food and Drug Administration meeting earlier this month.

The rise of LB.1 and KP.3 variants

CDC says they are tracking two new COVID-19 variants growing in proportion across the country - KP.3 and LB.1. Even though KP.3 has reached roughly a third of cases nationwide, up from 25 per cent a fortnight ago, and LB.1 makes up 17.5 per cent of cases, as of the CDC's latest projections.
According to experts, both variants are an offshoot of FLiRT, also known as KP.2, which rose to dominance last month. The CDC's projections so far have LB.1 starting to grow at a faster rate than KP.3, suggesting LB.1 might overtake KP.3.
All three of these variants have a common ancestor – the deadly JN.1 strain which drove a wave of cases last winter. "We've seen descendants of that moving along, that's KP.2, KP.3 and LB.1. So, these other new variants came up relatively quickly. I wouldn't say they caught us by surprise, but because they happened relatively quickly, we had to react," the FDA's Dr. Peter Marks said in a news conference.

Vaccinations to be boosted

Both the CDC and FDA are now stressed on the need to restart the call for vaccination. "There's probably some degree of cross-protection, but the optimal protection probably involves making sure we get closest to what is circulating now," he said.
The CDC says it has begun to track KP.3 and LB.1's rise to overtake KP.2. According to a study conducted by scientists in Japan, one of LB.1's mutations - a change called S: S31del, which KP.3 and JN.1 does not have - could enable it to spread faster.
End of Article
news
news
news
news
news
news
news
news
news
news
news
news
news
news
news
news
news
news
news
news
news
news
news
news
news
news
news
news
news
news
news
news
news
news
news
news
news
news
news
news
news
news
news
news
news
news
news
news
news
news
news
news
news
news
news
news
news
news
news
news
news
news
news
news
news
news
news
news
news
news
news
news
news
news
news
news
news
news
news
news
news
news
news
news
news
news
news
news
news
news
news
news
news
news
news
news
news
news
news
news
news
news
news
news
news
news
news
news
news
news
news
news
news
news
news
news
news
news
news
news
news
news
news
news
news
news
news
news
news
news
news
news
news
news
news
news
news
news
news
news
news
news
news
news
news
news
news
news
news
news
news
news
news
news
news
news
news
news
news
news
news
news
news
news
news
news
news
news
news
news
news
news
news
news
news
news
news
news
news
news
news
news
news
news
news
news
news
news
news
news
news
news
news
news
news
news
news
news
news
news
news
news
news
news
news
news
news
news
news
news
news
news
news
news
news
news
news
news
news
news
news
news
news
news
news
news
news
news
news
news
news
news
news
news
news
news
news
news
news
news
news
news
news
news
news
news
news
news
news
news
news
news
news
news
news
news
news
news
news
news
news
news
news
news
news
news
news
news
news
news
news
news
news
news
news
news
news
news
news
news
news
news
news
news
news
news
news
news
news
news
news
news
news
news
news
news
news
news
news
news
news
news
news
news
news
news
news
news
news
news
news
news
news
news
news
news
news
news
news
news
news
news
news
news
news
news
news
news
news
news
news