What is the News?
The National Centre for Disease Control(NCDC) has released data obtained from the ‘Genome Sequencing of SARS-CoV-19’ Samples in India. UK Variant is the cause of the Current COVID-19 surge in Delhi.
Who conducted the study?
- Indian SARS-CoV-2 Consortium on Genomics(INSACOG) has conducted Genome Sequencing of around 15,000 samples. It is about 1% of India’s coronavirus caseload.
Key Findings from the study:
- Firstly, Variants of Concern(VoC): The relative proportion of known Variants of Concern or VoC (the U.K., South Africa, Brazil variants) is around 11% of the sequenced samples.
- VoC is a category used during the initial assessment of a newly emerged variant of a virus. Before this, an emerging variant may have been labeled a “variant of interest”.
- Secondly, The proportion of the UK. variant (B.1.1.7) in the samples sequenced from Delhi increased to 50% from 28% in the 2nd week of March.
- The UK variant has a mutation N501Y. It increases the transmission of the virus leading to increased disease severity and mortality.
- Thirdly, there was also a rise in the Indian variant (B.1.617). The Indian Variant possesses two mutations “E484K and L245R” that are associated with increased efficacy and decreasing the potency of vaccines.
- Fourthly, Vaccines Effectiveness: According to a Preliminary report by the CSIR-Centre for Cellular and Molecular Biology, Hyderabad, Covaxin and Covishield appeared to be effective against the Indian variant.
Source: The Hindu