Feb. 8, 2021 -- The coronavirus variant first detected in the United Kingdom is rapidly becoming the dominant strain in several countries and is doubling every 10 days in the United States, according to new data.

The findings by Nicole L. Washington, PhD, associate director of research at the genomics company Helix, and colleagues were posted Sunday on the preprint server medRxiv. The paper hasn't been peer-reviewed in a scientific journal.

The researchers also found that the transmission rate in the United States of the variant, labeled B.1.1.7, is 30% to 40% higher than that of more common lineages.

The findings lend credence to modelling predictions the CDC released in January. The agency said at the time that the new strain could cause more than half of new infections in this country by March, even as the U.S. races to deploy vaccines.

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