Kappa Covid Variant Detected in Uttar Pradesh

Two cases of highly transmissible Kappa variant of COVID-19 were detected in Uttar Pradesh, recently.

Highlights

  • Cases were reported after genome sequencing of samples at Lucknow’s King George medical college. Genome sequencing is a laboratory process which is instrumental for characterising mutations and tracking covid-19 disease outbreaks.
  • Delta Plus variant of COVID-19 was also found in 107 samples.
  • Both variants of Covid-19 are not new in state.

Kappa variant

It is one among three sub-lineages of lineage B.1.617. It is also known as lineage B.1.617.1, carrying E484Q mutations. It was first detected in December 2020 in India. Kappa accounted for more than half of sequences being submitted from India by March 2021. As per WHO Weekly Epidemiological Update, 34 countries had reported cases of this subvariant. By May 2021, number of countries had increased to 41. United Kingdom had detected 418 confirmed cases of SARS-CoV-2 Kappa variant as of May 2021.

Delta variant

This variant is also known as B.1.617.2. This variant was first discovered in India. It is descendant of lineage B.1.617. British scientists declared B.1.617.2 as “variant of concern” on May 6, 2021. It spreads more quickly than original version of virus and can spread as quickly as Alpha. It carries T478K, L452R and P681R mutations.

Severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS‑CoV‑2)

It is this virus and respiratory illness responsible for COVID-19 pandemic. World Health Organization had declared this outbreak as Public Health Emergency of International Concern on January 30, 2020. Later, on March 11, 2020 it was declared as pandemic. SARS‑CoV‑2 is a positive-sense single-stranded RNA virus.

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