A variant of the coronavirus that first emerged in the United Kingdom has been identified in Central Virginia.
The Virginia Department of Health identified the variant in a sample from an adult resident who had no history of travel during the exposure period.
The B.1.1.7 variant of the virus is said to be more contagious than others. A preliminary report from experts in the U.K. indicates that this variant causes more severe illness than other variants, but more studies are needed to confirm that finding, the health department said Wednesday in a news release.
As of Wednesday, 11 other cases of this variant has been identified in Virginia, as well as three other cases of the variant first identified in South Africa.
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