Japan Urged to Remain Vigilant Against New Coronavirus Variants

Courtesy of the National Institute of Infectious Diseases
The omicron variant of the novel coronavirus is seen in an electron micrograph.

A virology expert has called for vigilance against new coronavirus variants ahead of the downgrading of COVID-19 under the Infectious Diseases Control Law.

When the number of infections increases, the speed of virus mutation also increases, raising the risk of the emergence of variants that are more severe than the mainstream omicron variant.

New omicron subvariant XBB.1.5 is spreading rapidly in the United States, and it has also been confirmed in Japan.

Tetsuya Mizutani, a professor of virology at Tokyo University of Agriculture and Technology, said, “It’s important to maintain vigilance in preparation for the next outbreak.”