A more transmissible coronavirus variant first detected in Britain does not cause more severe illness in hospitalized patients, according to a new study published by the Lancet Infectious Diseases journal. The study, released late Monday, contradicts earlier findings that linked the variant with increased covid-related disease and death. Known as B.1.1.7, the variant has ripped through populations in Europe and is now the dominant virus variant in the United States, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. The Lancet study confirmed that the variant is more contagious than the original strain, resulting in higher viral loads in infected patients, but does not necessarily produce a more lethal illness.
Here are some significant developments:
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