India: Second most hit by COVID-19 in the world

On April 12, 2021, India reported 168,912 new COVID-19 cases in the last twenty four hours. With this, the total number of COVID-19 cases in India increased to 13.53 million making India, the second most COVID-19 struck country in the world. Previously, Brazil was the second most COVID-19 hit country in the world. The US remains the most COVID-19 affected country in the world. The number of COVID-19 cases in the US has touched 31.2 million.

Current Scenario of COVID-19 in India

  • The national COVID-19 recovery rate has fallen below 90%. The death toll has increased to 170,179.
  • The ICMR (Indian Council of Medical Research) has so far tested 1,180,136 samples.
  • The current increasing COVID-19 infections in India is mainly due to a double mutant COVID-19 variety found in the country.

Double Mutant COVID-19 variety

The India SARS-COV-2 Consortium on Genomics (INSACOG) recently carried out a genomic sequencing on the latest samples of COVID-19. Accordingly, an increase in the fraction of samples with L452 and E484Q mutations has been discovered. These two mutations in COVID-19 virus have come together and are causing the double mutation problem in India. The double mutant variant of COVID-19 has been named as B.1.617.

INSACOG is a group of ten national laboratories that have come together under Ministry of Health to address COVID-19 issues. The laboratories under INSACOG carry out testing process to map the genetic code of the virus. So far, the double mutant variety has been found in eight countries. They are UK, Australia, Singapore, US, etc.

How serious is the problem?

If the double mutation occurs in the spike protein of the virus, then the chances of the virus escaping the immune system is high.

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