Some researchers are referring to it as déjà-vu. The COVID-19 Delta variant was already dated at this time last year. The Omicron version then surfaced with reports that it could avoid vaccinations and was quickly contagious.
These days, the Omicron subvariants BQ.1 and BQ.1.1 exhibit the same commonalities.
The virus is being tracked by doctor-scientist Jeremy Luban, MD, who told NPR that it “feels a little bit disturbingly similar.” “Last year at this time of year, we had hope. We went into Thanksgiving to wake up to Omicron as we were emerging from the Delta wave, which was rapidly diminishing.
According to the CDC’s end-of-week data, BQ.1 and BQ.1.1 currently account for the majority of new COVID-19 infections. Since the previous week, the two had increased from 33% to 44% of all new infections.
Early laboratory experiments demonstrate that the new subvariants outperform earlier variants in their ability to resist vaccination and booster injections.
Because some antibody treatments on which they had relied do not function on the most recent iterations of the virus, health experts are concerned for immunocompromised and organ transplant recipients. The absence of any novel treatments appearing to be in development is also troubling.
In terms of efficacy, Omicron’s “latest two mutations have very much rendered useless every single monoclonal antibody now available on the market.” Since it should be simple to develop antibody therapies that target Omicron, it’s been interesting to see that there hasn’t been much of a push for a second generation of these monoclonal antibody therapies, according to virologist Andy Pekosz, PhD, in an interview with the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health.
The CDC stated this past week that there were about 289,000 COVID-19 positive cases. Since mid-October, the number of cases has progressively increased. However, they are not exhibiting the significant growth that the country is observing with the flu or respiratory syncytial virus.
According to NBC News, the quantity of people obtaining COVID-19 booster shots or vaccinations has risen to its highest level since January. A White House source reported that over 5.6 million shots were administered last week, an increase of 1 million shots from the week before.
According to the CDC, only 10% of Americans are fully immunised and have had the most recent booster.