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More Treatment-Resistant, Contagious Brazil Variant Of The Coronavirus Found In Louisiana

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CDC

The Louisiana Department of Health confirmed Thursday that the Brazil variant of the coronavirus is in Louisiana.

Genome testing of positive COVID-19 tests found the variant, also known as P.1, in two patients — one in the greater New Orleans area and the other in Southwest Louisiana.

A press release from the health department says the people who contracted the P.1 variant had not traveled recently. They also hadn’t received any COVID-19 vaccine doses.

Health officials suspect there are more undetected cases of the Brazil variant in the state.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has called P.1 a variant of concern because it can spread more easily and it has been known to be resistant against some treatments for COVID-19. The press release reported that some data indicates that it may also be linked to a higher chance of developing severe illness.

The U.K. variant and the California variant have also been identified in Louisiana in previous months. The health department says all available COVID-19 vaccines protect against severe illness from these variants.

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