First two cases of more contagious Brazilian COVID variant identified in Virginia


Illustration of changing genetic structure to new strain. (Getty Images)

RICHMOND, Va. (WRIC) — The first two cases of the P. 1 COVID-19 variant have been identified in Virginia. According to the Virginia Department of Health, this more contagious variant was identified in two adults — one from the Northwest region and another from the Eastern region.

The person from the northern part of the state had recently traveled within the country while the other person had no travel history during their exposure period. Neither of them had been vaccinated before being exposed to the virus.

A release from VDH explains that this particular variant was first identified in travelers from Brazil late last year. The variant is expected to be more likely to spread from person-to-person but not anymore severe than other strains.

So far, this variant has been identified in Virginia and at least 22 other states.

The most prevalent coronavirus variant of concern in Virginia is currently B.1.1.7.

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