Wednesday, June 9, 2021

NIV Pune detects new severe Covid variant


PUNE: The National Institute of Virology (NIV) in Pune has identified yet another variant of the Covid-19 virus, which has been identified as the B. variant, through genome sequencing of samples collected from international travellers.

According to a report, NIV, Pune has found the new variant after genome sequencing of samples collected from travellers who arrived in India from Brazil and the United Kingdom. The report has said the new variant is likely to cause severe symptoms and may need greater screening of vaccine efficacy against it.

Meanwhile, a broader study by INSACOG, a grouping of 10 laboratories, has found that the surge of Covid-19 cases in India in the last two months shows a correlation with the rise in B.1.617 variant of the SARS-CoV-2. April and May witnessed a deadly second wave of coronavirus cases that swept through the country, stretching the healthcare infrastructure to its limits.

According to INSACOG, the B.1.1.7 lineage of the virus, which was first identified in the United Kingdom is declining in proportion across India in the last one and half month. The B.1.1.7 variant of the coronavirus has been named 'Alpha'.

The B.1.617 lineage of SARS CoV-2 was first reported from Maharashtra but it is now seen in other states such as West Bengal, Andhra Pradesh, Delhi, Gujarat, Telangana. "The current surge in cases seen over the last two months in some states shows a correlation with the rise in the B.1.617 lineage of SARS CoV-2," the Indian SARS-CoV-2 Consortium on Genomics (INSACOG) said.

The B.1.617 lineage has further evolved into three sublineages -- B.1.617.1, B.1.617.2 and B.1.617.3. Early data shows B.1.617.2, dubbed Delta by the WHO, has higher transmission advantages over the other two sublineages.


Post a Comment