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B.1.617 dominant mutant strain of Covid variant in India, represents 55% of the total of “worrisome variants” detected | India News


NEW DELHI: Variant B.1.617 has become the dominant Covid-19 mutant in India and accounts for around 55% of the total ‘variants of concern’ (VoC) detected in the country so far by genome sequencing Union health minister Harsh Vardhan told a meeting of the Group of Ministers to review the Covid-19 situation on Monday.
Of the total of 25,739 Covid-19 positive samples sequenced by INSACOG as of Monday morning, 9,508 samples have been found to have VoC. Variant B.1.617, which was first detected in Maharashtra and found to have high transmissibility, was found in 5,261 samples, making it one of the most common mutations detected so far.
“We have ensured that a sentinel surveillance system and strategy are in place. States have been asked to regularly submit samples for whole genome sequencing, ”said Vardhan.
Previously, officials had said that a correlation had been observed between the increase in positive cases during the second wave of Covid-19 in India with the increase in the B.1.617 lineage of SARS-CoV2.
The prevalence of the variant was more common in states such as Maharashtra, Punjab, Delhi, Andhra Pradesh, and Telangana.
Recently, the UK health department said that two doses of anti-Covid hits may be required for strong protection against one of the B.1.617 variant strains. However, experts in India are of the opinion that the first dose of Covishield generates adequate antibodies to protect against the severe disease of Covid-19.
Vardhan also shared details about the increasing incidence of mucormycosis across the country.
Up to 5,424 cases of mucormycosis have been reported in 18 states, most of them in Gujarat (2,165) and Maharashtra (1,188). Uttar Pradesh (663), Madhya Pradesh (519), Haryana (339), and Andhra Pradesh (248) also have a substantial number of mucormycosis cases.
“We have been warning, issuing advisories and, through our experts, it has been communicated that the indiscriminate use of steroids should be avoided and that diabetes should be thoroughly treated in the best possible way,” he said.
“The central government is importing nine lakh vials of amphotericin-B for the treatment of black fungus. Of this, 50,000 vials have been received and around three lakh vials will be available in the next seven days, “he added.
Nineteen states have already declared mucormycosis a notifiable disease under the Epidemic Act, it reported.
On vaccines and clinical intervention, Vardhan said: “We have already given doses of Rs 19.6 million to our compatriots. More than 60 lakh doses are still in the states and more doses of 21 lakh are being prepared. ”
The Government of Mexico also discussed the strategy for rural areas and planned to improve the health and vaccination infrastructure to deal with the entry of the infection into remote villages and corners.

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