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Michael Osterholm, PhD, Director, Center for Infectious Disease Research and Policy at the University of Minnesota. Prominent epidemiologist, member of President Biden’s COVID-19 Advisory Board and a national expert commentator on the pandemic, Dr. Osterholm has issued a warning about the U.K. variant B.1.1.7, which is rapidly spreading across the U.S. as many states opt to lift or scale back virus restrictions. “This is the perfect storm,” Dr. Osterholm said on March 17th, “Here is Europe locking down and having problems containing B.1.1.7, even with vaccinations and previous infection histories. Here we are opening up as wide as we can. We are literally just walking into the mouth of the virus saying, ‘Don’t worry.'” Dr. Osterholm predicts that the U.S. will see a surge of B.1.1.7 cases within the next few weeks. He predicts the variant will primarily infect children returning to in-person learning who will then spread it to their parents and other adults.