The World Health Organisation (WHO) classified EG.5, which has been nicknamed “ERIS”, as a subvariant of the Omicron lineage. It has an offshoot, dubbed EG.5.1, which contains an additional spike protein mutation that might make it more contagious or severe.
EG.5 had been found in 51 countries as of Tuesday 8th August.
China, United State, Republic of Korea, Japan, Canada, Australia, Singapore, United Kingdom, France, Portugal and Spain are amongst the countries with rising cases.
It is the most common and fastest growing COVID-19 subvariant and it is said that it is dangerous to people over the age of 65 and people that are not vaccinated.
EG.5 has similar symptoms to other COVID-19 variants including, cough, fever, muscle pain, loss of taste and smell and shortness of breath.
INFOGRAPHIC: New COVID-19 variant: