Officials of the World Health Organization said on the 4th that more and more evidence shows that the Omicron variant mainly affects the upper respiratory tract, so the infection symptoms will be milder than other variants.
A joint study by American and Japanese scientists using hamsters and mice was published on the 29th. The researchers infected the test mice with Omicron and other earlier variants and found that the mice infected with Omicron had less lung damage, less weight loss, and a lower number of deaths.
But because Omicron can evade the human immune system, it spreads faster than other variants before it.
As of December 30 last year, Japan had 500 confirmed cases of Omicron, but as of January 4, there were more than 1,000 confirmed cases of Omicron in 30 prefectures, of which 18 prefectures were suspected of community transmission. Since Japan’s first confirmed case was discovered on November 30 last year, the epidemic situation has spread in various places, and local governments and medical institutions have been stepping up vigilance.
The number of new cases of COVID-19 in the UK reached a record high in a single day, breaking through 200,000 for the first time, reaching 218,724. British Prime Minister Johnson said that he will continue to promote the “Plan B” measures implemented in England last month, including wearing masks in public transport and shops, but not restricting gatherings or closing business establishments.