“Son of Omicron” Variant Detected in Multiple Countries

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Alyssa Rask, Staff Writer

The World Health Organization (WHO) reported on Monday that they will be keeping an eye on a sub-variant of the highly infectious Omicron variant: the “Son of Omicron.”

Officially known as Omicron BA.2, the sub-variant has now been detected in 49 countries and 17 states in the United States with over 10,000 cases, according to a global COVID variant tracker supported by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases.

WHO reports that the sub-variant shares most of its mutations with the original Omicron variant, but with a couple of new mutations.

The “Son of Omicron” has also raised concerns over its contagiousness, accounting for almost half of all COVID cases in Denmark. Early studies of Omicron BA.2 have found that it may spread more easily than Omicron. However, scientists state that more data is needed to confirm this.