Omicron BA.2 variant now represents nearly 86% of all sequenced cases, according to the World Health Organization. It is even more transmissible than its highly contagious Omicron siblings, BA.1 and BA.1.1, however the evidence so far suggests that it is no more likely to cause severe disease.
First identified in Botswana and South Africa in November, the Omicron variant has surged around the world over the past few months, faster than any previously known form of the coronavirus. The variant has caused a rapid rise in new cases that pushed some hospital systems to the breaking point.
Scientists first recognized Omicron thanks to its distinctive combination of more than 50 mutations. Some of them were carried by earlier variants such as Alpha and Beta, and previous experiments had demonstrated that they could enable a coronavirus to spread quickly. Other mutations were known to help coronaviruses evade antibodies produced by vaccines.
- BA.2 is a new sub-variant of the Omicron version of the coronavirus.
- Scientists say it's more transmissable, harder to track and now dominant worldwide causing a significant rise in COVID-19 cases in some countries.
Existing vaccines work against the BA.2 variant.
One of Omicron’s most striking features was its ability to partly evade the protection of vaccines. “Breakthrough” infections became more common, helping to drive the case surge to its record high. But the vaccines continued to protect people against severe disease, especially those who received a booster. Throughout 카지노사이트존 the Omicron surge, vaccines remained highly effective against hospitalizations.