Day: December 8, 2021

Blog article

Omicron v. delta: Battle of coronavirus mutants is critical

As the omicron coronavirus variant spreads in southern Africa and pops up in countries all around the world, scientists are anxiously watching a battle play out that could determine the future of the pandemic. Can the latest competitor to the world-dominating delta overthrow it?

Some scientists, poring over data from South Africa and the United Kingdom, suggest omicron could emerge the victor.

“It’s still early days, but increasingly, data is starting to trickle in, suggesting that omicron is likely to outcompete delta in many, if not all, places,” said Dr. Jacob Lemieux, who monitors variants for a research collaboration led by Harvard Medical School.

But others said Monday it’s too soon to know how likely it is that omicron will spread more efficiently than delta, or, if it does, how fast it might take over.

“Especially here in the U.S., where we’re seeing significant surges in delta, whether omicron’s going

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Health News

Johns Hopkins team creates Lyme and tick-borne disease dashboard

The data in this figure are from CDC and the US Census Bureau and are in the public domain. Map tiles are reprinted under a CC BY license, with permission from CARTO, original copyright 2021. CARTO map tiles contain information from OpenStreetMap and OpenStreetMap Foundation, which is made available under the Open Database License. Credit: Curriero et al., 2021, PLOS ONE, CC-BY 4.0 (creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/)

A team of researchers at Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health has created and posted online a free Lyme and tick-borne disease dashboard. The group has published a paper describing the information available on the dashboard and how to use it on the open-access site PLOS ONE.

As the researchers note, tick-borne diseases are on the rise in the U.S., likely due to a warming climate. They also note that many cases of tick-borne diseases are never reported anywhere, which leaves people in

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