New COVID variants accounted for 16.6% of all U.S. cases in latest week, up from 11.4% a week ago: CDC

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The two new COVID variants dubbed BQ.1 and BQ.1.1 continued to gain traction in the U.S. in the latest week, accounting for 16.6% of all cases, up from 11.4% a week ago, data from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention showed Friday. The two variants are lineages of BA.5, the omicron subvariant that remains dominant but has shrunk to account for just 62.2% of circulating variants, the agency said, down from 67.9% a week ago. The CDC had previously combined BQ.1 and BQ.1.1 with BA.5 cases because the numbers of the new variants were so small. BQ.1 was first identified by researchers in early September and has been found in the U.K. and Germany, among other places. The New York area, which includes New Jersey, Puerto Rico and the Virgin Islands, has the highest number of cases involving those variants at 28.4%, the data shows.

This article was originally published by Marketwatch.com. Read the original article here.

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