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COVID-19 Omicron variant first originated in New York, not South Africa?
On November 26, 2021, the WHO issued a statement listing the B.1.1.529 new coronavirus variant strain as a “Variant of Concern” and named it Omicron.
In a statement, the WHO pointed out that South Africa first reported it to WHO on November 24, and the first sample infected with the variant was collected on November 9.
This variant contains a large number of mutations, some of which are worrisome.
Preliminary studies have shown that this variant puts people at an increased risk of re-infection with the virus compared to other “concerned” variants.
The number of cases of infection with the variant is increasing in almost every province in South Africa.
Recently, scientists discovered and confirmed that the earliest birthplace of the Omicron variant was New York, USA, not South Africa!
Traces of the Omicron virus were found in wastewater in New York City on November 21, according to the latest traceability study released by the CDC.
This was the day before South African scientists announced the confirmation of the Omicron variant and ten days before the first Omicron variant infection was reported in the United States.
According to multiple media reports, New York State is one of the hardest hit areas in the wave of Omicron sweeping the United States, and it is also the earliest inflection point.
The latest data suggests this may be because New York was one of the first regions in the world to be exposed to the Omicron variant.
Scientists studying Covid-19 began tracking wastewater in New York City in the summer of 2020, sequencing viruses found in wastewater samples
. They carried out routine sampling on November 21, and sent it for inspection two days later, with the results obtained in early December.
By the time the Omicron outbreak had broken out, the researchers “recognized at a glance (the samples showed) the unique mutational signature of the new variant.”
Also in California and Texas, researchers found evidence of Omicron in wastewater samples in late November.
These findings suggest that Omicron may have spread far more widely in the United States at the time than confirmed cases suggest.
On the other hand, research has also revealed that monitoring of wastewater can serve as an early warning tool for the spread of new variants.
The researchers pointed out that this has implications for the discovery and transmission of the virus.
(source:internet, reference only)