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(WGHP) — A new form of the COVID delta variant that could possibly spread faster has been found in North Carolina, according to CBS News.

It has been named AY.4.2 but also referred to as “delta plus” and has been found in labs in the following states:

  • California
  • Florida
  • Maryland
  • Massachusetts
  • Nevada
  • North Carolina
  • Rhode Island
  • Washington

Health officials in the District of Columbia have also reported at least one case of AY.4.2.

The new strain is being investigated by health officials in the United Kingdom who say they have seen a growing amount of cases.

Delta plus does not cause more severe illness, and current vaccines are effective against it.

A small fraction of COVID cases in the United States over the last several weeks have been linked to delta plus, and American health officials are working to study it.

“We have teams that are constantly reviewing the genetic sequence data and looking for blips, an increase in a certain proportion or just something that’s completely new,” said Dr. Summer Galloway, executive secretary of the U.S. government’s SARS-CoV-2 Interagency Group.

Galloway says that delta plus poses a very low risk to public health in the US and shouldn’t have a significant impact on the effectiveness of vaccines.