9 things to know about Omicron subvariants BQ.1, BQ.1.1

ORLANDO, Fla. — The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention said that two new omicron subvariants that appear to be more adept at dodging immunity make up more than half of the COVID-19 cases in the United States.


Read nine things to know about the new omicron subvariants BQ.1 and BQ.1.1 below:

Read: Coronavirus: New omicron subvariants account for 60% of current COVID-19 cases

1. The new subvariants are responsible for almost 63% of cases in the U.S.

2. They’re among the more than 300 sublineages of the Omicron variant.

3. The CDC says cases have quickly risen since early November.

4. Doctors say the subvariants’ potency is likely attributed to ineffective immune responses from having a prior COVID-19 infection or vaccination.

5. BQ.1 and BQ.1.1 are expected to increase in dominance in the coming months

6. The new subvariants appear to be highly transmissible.

7. But they do not seem to cause more severe illness.

8. Moderna and Pfizer say their bivalent boosters protect against BQ.1.1.

Read: Pfizer asks FDA to clear updated COVID shot for kids under 5

9. Symptoms of the subvariant include:

• Fever or chills

• Cough

• Shortness of breath or difficulty breathing

• Fatigue

• Muscle or body aches

• Headache

• Loss of taste or smell

• Sore throat

• Congestion or runny nose

• Nausea or vomiting

• Diarrhea

The Cox Media Group National Content Desk contributed to this report.

Click here to download the free WFTV news and weather apps, click here to download the WFTV Now app for your smart TV and click here to stream Channel 9 Eyewitness News live.

Jason Kelly

Jason Kelly, WFTV.com

Jason Kelly joined WFTV in 2014.