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New Omicron Subvariant BA.5 Now a Majority of US COVID-19 Cases

A new omicron subvariant known as BA.5 now comprises a majority of U.S. COVID-19 cases, according to data released from the CDC. BA.5 now makes up 53.6 percent of U.S. cases and BA.4 makes up another 16.5 percent, putting the two together at around 70 percent of infections. The data is a sign of the rise of the highly transmissible subvariant, which has prompted concern about a new increase in cases. BA.5 and BA.4 have mutations that have shown an increased ability to evade the protection from vaccines and previous infection. The FDA last week advised vaccine makers to target the BA.4 and BA.5 subvariants in their updated vaccines that they are preparing for this fall.

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