Delta variant is causing strain in India, Lambda variant absent

As per the latest report by the Indian SARS-CoV-2 Genomics Consortium, this variant of concern continues to cause cluster outbreaks

Globally and within India, cases of the Delta variant of coronavirus continue to be a reason for covid outbreaks. A total of 725 genome sequencing tests have reported positive cases of Delta (B.1.617.2), 185 Kappa (B.1.617.1), 159 Alpha (B.1.1.7), six Beta (B.1.351) and three Delta Plus (B.1.617.2.1/ AY.1) strains have been identified in Karnataka.

The latest report by the Indian SARS-CoV-2 Genomics Consortium (INSACOG) stated, “The Delta variant continues to be the dominant lineage for new cases across all parts of India in recent samples and remains the most rapidly rising lineage globally. It is responsible for multiple outbreaks, including an outbreak across Southeast Asia. It shows the fastest growth in new cases globally. Regions with a higher rate of vaccination and strong public health measures, such as Singapore, continue to do well. A study by ICMR confirms that a majority of the clinical cases in vaccine breakthroughs were infected with the Delta variant but only 9.8 per cent of the cases required hospitalisation while fatality was found to be restricted to 0.4 per cent. However, other variants of concern (VOC) continue to be very low in India and are declining. No cases of Lambda variant have been reported in India so far. According to data from the UK, Lambda is still seen primarily in travellers or their contacts and is not growing like Delta.”

The report further stated that a growing spectrum of mutations is seen in Delta cases in the UK, US and India. The most frequent spike protein mutations, other than K417N (AY.1/AY.2), seen in the UK are G446V and P251L. In India, A222V and K77T have been reported as possible markers of sub-lineages.

“Prior research into A222V for either transmissibility or immune escape was found to be negative. K77T has previously been reported in a cluster of Delta that spread to Asiatic lions in a zoo, and seen in sequences from Tamil Nadu, but has no known impact on transmission or immune escape in humans. While these mutations will be tracked and investigated, there is currently no evidence of any new Delta sub-lineage that is of greater concern than Delta. Clusters of cases containing new mutations of known clinical significance will continue to be specifically looked for,” the report added.

354 test positive for covid

Karnataka reported 1,501 fresh covid cases including 354 in Bengaluru. The total cases in the State now stands at 28,97,664. Out of this, Bengaluru’s cumulative covid count has reached 12,25,581. In all, 32 people have died of Covid in the State including five in Bengaluru. Around 13 districts had zero covid deaths. A 96-year old man of Uttara Kannada was the oldest covid victim while a 22-year old man from Belagavi was the youngest victim. The total positivity rate for the State was 1.46 per cent and case fatality rate was 2.13 per cent. However, testing seems to be dipping as only 1.02 lakh tests were conducted in the State.


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