EG.5: New COVID Variant. Hospitalizations Go Up in U.S.

New COVID Variant

In the US, the novel coronavirus variant EG.5 is currently in the lead. Eris, as people are calling it, has symptoms quite similar to COVID-19.

According to the most recent estimates from the US Centres for Disease Control and Prevention, EG.5 is responsible for roughly 17% of new Covid-19 cases nationwide, compared to 16% for the next most prevalent lineage, XBB.1.16.

EG may sound like a completely other strain of the virus, but it is actually an offshoot of the Omicron family’s XBB recombinant strain. Furthermore, unlike the original Omicron strain, it indicates another minor modification to the virus rather than a significant evolutionary leap.

Recurring Patterns

The omicron variant which resulted in an enormous outbreak in late 2021 and early 2022, gave rise to the EG.5 variant. However, the World Health Organisation (WHO) notes that “Eris” EG.5 is a variety that is “under monitoring” and not one that should raise any “interest” or “concern.” As of right now, according to Ruth McDermott-Levy, a professor at Villanova University’s Louise Fitzpatrick College of Nursing, if people follow up with prevention activities, they ought to be able to stay safe.

Scientists are unsure of the specific additional abilities it gives the virus, but because many of the new XBB offspring have adapted it, variant hunters are paying close attention.

The 465 mutation is found in around 35% of coronavirus sequences published globally, including FL.1.5.1, a coronavirus whose prevalence is increasing in the Northeast, indicating that it may have some sort of evolutionary benefit over earlier iterations.

Is EG.5 Severe?

The signs of EG.5 don’t seem to be all that different from those of other omicron sub variants. Cough, fever, chills, shortness of breath, exhaustion, body aches, loss of taste or smell, headaches, and other symptoms are reported by infected people.

“Both are only slightly more resistant to neutralizing antibodies in serum of infected and vaccinated persons,” Ho, a professor of microbiology and immunology, said

According to the WHO, EG.5 is not causing any more cases or fatalities than the XBB strain of omicron.

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