COVID-19 cases caused by new variants are growing rapidly in the United States, according to the data provided by the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). According to the data published by the US CDC, two new COVID-19 variants, including BQ.1 and BQ.1.1, have been growing rapidly in the US.
At the beginning of October 2022, each variant accounted for around 1% of new COVID-19 infections in the United States. The US CDC data further revealed that both variants led to about 14% of new COVID-19 infections in the country, and together, both variants accounted for more than one in four new COVID-19 infections in the United States.
The BA.5 COVID-19 variant, which had been dominating COVID-19 infections in the US since July 2022, now accounts for 49.6% of new COVID-19 infections in the country. These new COVID-19 variants are different from each other, but they all carry several of the same mutations.
The BQ variant is actually a BA.5 COVID-19 variant, says Dr. Andrew Pekosz, a virologist. Dr. Andrew Pekosz added that in the United States, all the COVID-19 variants have picked up a few mutations, which help them to evade some of the vaccine-induced immunity.