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Coronavirus tally: Research suggest latest omicron variant BA.4.6 is better at evading immune system than BA.5

Emerging research suggests the latest omicron variant to gain ground -- BA.4.6, which accounted for about 8% of new U.S. cases last week -- is even better at evading the immune system than BA.5, the Associated Press reported. The fact that each new strain is more infections than the previous one is one reason to predict that the virus will last far into the future, having already lasted longer than the 1918 flu pandemic. That's why it's important to get vaccinated and keep up to date with boosters, which still offer the best protection against severe disease and death. The news comes as U.S. known cases of COVID are continuing to ease, although the true tally is likely higher given how many people are testing at home, where the data are not being collected. The daily average for new cases stood at 75,359 on Tuesday, according to a New York Times tracker, down 18% from two weeks ago. The daily average for hospitalizations was down 12% at 34,864 while the daily average for deaths is down 10% to 420. Globally, the confirmed case tally rose above 606.3 million on Wednesday, according to data aggregated by Johns Hopkins, while the death toll is above 6.50 million with the U.S. leading the world with 94.9 million cases and 1,048,217 deaths.

-Ciara Linnane


(END) Dow Jones Newswires

09-07-22 0633ET

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