ROANOKE, Va. (WDBJ/VDH Release) - The Virginia Department of Health has announced the first cases of the SARS-CoV-2 variants B.1.427 and B.1.429 in samples collected between December 2020 and February 2021 from Virginia residents.
The variants, which first emerged in California last summer, are associated with increased person-to-person transmission of COVID-19, according to VDH, which says so far, there is no evidence that infections with these variants cause more severe disease. These two variants were only recently added to CDC’s Variant of Concern list.
Virginia now has identified a total of 14 cases of the B.1.427 variant, nine cases of the B.1.429 variant, 26 cases of the B.1.351 variant (first identified in South Africa) and 127 cases of the B.1.1.7 variant (first identified in the United Kingdom). With the combined state and national surveillance efforts, it is likely that additional cases with SARS-CoV-2 variants of concern will be identified, according to VDH.
With viruses changing routinely, VDH expects to see new variants of the SARS-CoV-2 virus as disease spreads.