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So the UK variant might be more deadly after all

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention is reviewing new data about the UK variant

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A scooter rider travels over Westminster Bridge in London, Saturday, Jan. 23, 2021 during England’s third national lockdown since the coronavirus outbreak began.

A scooter rider travels over Westminster Bridge in London, Saturday, Jan. 23, 2021 during England’s third national lockdown since the coronavirus outbreak began.

Associated Press

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention is reviewing data from the United Kingdom to see whether or not the UK COVID-19 variant is more deadly or not.

What’s going on?

A new United Kingdom report released on Friday suggests there is “a realistic possibility” that the new variant originally discovered in the nation might have a higher death rate than any other variant.

Here in the U.S., the CDC plans to review the data from the UK to find out what’s going on.

  • “The CDC has reached out to UK officials and is reviewing their new mortality data associated with variant B.1.1.7,” a CDC official told CNN.

Context

In the beginning of January, England announced a new national COVID-19 lockdown to deal with the fast-spreading COVID-19 variant, which had been originally discovered in the United Kingdom, as I wrote about for the Deseret News.

The new variant was believed to be highly-transmissible, but not necessarily more deadly. Experts said the UK variant could spread easier and faster, which would lead to higher transmission rates, hospitalizations and deaths overall. But that did not mean the virus variant itself was more deadly.

Scientists focused more on trying to learn whether or not the new COVID-19 vaccine would stop the new mutation, as I wrote about for the Deseret News.

Pfizer-BioNTech released the results of a new study that showed “no biologically significant difference in neutralization activity,” meaning that the variant did not change enough characteristics to evade the vaccine, as I wrote for the Deseret News.