Thursday, February 25, 2021

New COVID strains in New Jersey

A front page {over the fold} article in the February 25, 2021 issue of the Newark-Star Ledger is titled "On the trail of dangerous strains in N.J."

The article says this of the "U.K. variant" of Covid:

British scientists are now saying that the U.K. variant, called B.1.1.7, is likely hospitalizing and killing people at a higher rate than the dominant strain of the virus.

The Star-Ledger article makes no mention of the California variant. On Tuesday, February 23, 2021, the Los Angeles Times published a story titled California's coronavirus strain looks increasingly dangerous: 'The devil is already here', which included the text

A coronavirus variant that probably emerged in May and surged to become the dominant strain in California not only spreads more readily than its predecessors but also evades antibodies generated by COVID-19 vaccines or prior infection and is associated with severe illness and death, researchers said.
Ominously, the new study also suggested the California variant could have the added impact of greater virulence. That observation is based on the medical charts of 324 patients hospitalized at UCSF, a relatively small sample. Still, the researchers found that the 21% of these patients who contracted B.1.427/B.1.429 were more likely than their counterparts to have been admitted to the ICU, and they were 11 times more likely to die. That finding held up even after researchers adjusted for differences in the patients' age, gender and ethnicity.


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