Is Omicron XBB.1.5 variant dangerous? 5 things you must know

Experts believe that the new Covid version XBB.1.5 in the scene is the “next big thing” and has the potential to trigger a significant upsurge globally. Many people are wondering whether we should be concerned about the variant now that the first case has been found in India. Here are five things you must know about this new Covid strain.

  • A novel recombinant strain called XBB.1.5 is more immune evasive and more contagious than BQ and XBB variations. The XBB1.5 outperformed the BQ1 version by 108%. But as more data became available, XBB1.5 continued to improve and is currently 120% quicker. It spreads more quickly than Omicron BF does.
  • The BQ.1 and the BQ.1.1 sub-variants are no longer the most often found coronavirus alterations, having been replaced by the XBB.1.5 omicron subvariant. A recombinant of two sub-variants that evolved from the BA.2 omicron subvariant produced the XBB subvariant, from which XBB.1.5 descends. This indicates that it has genetic material from two coronavirus variants that descended from the BA.2 subvariant.
  • India is where the omicron sub-variants XBB and XBB.1 were originally discovered. Some researchers have suggested that XBB.1.5 might have mutated in New York, notably Eric Topol, a professor of molecular medicine at Scripps Research Institute.
  • Data from the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has indicated that the highly contagious Omicron XBB.1.5 subvariant is now to blame for over 40% of COVID-19 cases in the country, with the subvariant doubling from the previous week.
  • Infectious diseases specialist Anthony Fauci had stated in November that, while new Covid booster shots, which target the original variation of the coronavirus as well as BA.4 and BA.5 sub-variants, might provide some protection against the XBB subvariant, it would not be ideal.
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