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Delta Variant Spread

The Delta variant now makes up more than 6 percent of SARS-CoV-2 infections in the US, CNBC reports, noting that this could be an undercount as the US only sequences a portion of cases. NPR adds that in some western US states it may account for about 18 percent of cases.

The variant, also known as B.1.617.2, was first identified in India and has since been found in 62 countries, CNBC says. In the UK, it has spread rapidly and now accounts for 60 percent of cases, outpacing the Alpha variant there, it adds. "We cannot let that happen in the United States," Anthony Fauci, the White House chief medical advisor, said during a press briefing on Tuesday, according to NPR.

Fauci added that the Delta variant appears to be more transmissible and may be associated with more severe disease, NPR reports, and that to combat it, the US must step up vaccinations. NPR adds that an analysis from Public Health England found that two doses of the Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine are 88 percent effective at protecting against symptomatic disease from Delta variant infection.

The Scan

Vaccine Update Recommended

A US Food and Drug Administration panel recommends booster vaccines be updated to target Omicron, CNBC reports.

US to Make More Vaccines for Monkeypox Available

The US is to make nearly 300,000 vaccine doses available in the coming weeks to stem the spread of human monkeypox virus, according to NPR.

Sentence Appealed

The Associated Press reports that Swedish prosecutors are appealing the sentence given to a surgeon once lauded for transplanting synthetic tracheas but then convicted of causing bodily harm.

Genome Biology Papers on COVID-19 Effector Genes, Virtual ChIP-seq, scDART

In Genome Biology this week: proposed COVID-19 effector genes, method to predict transcription factor binding patterns, and more.