Should India Hit the Panic Button Amidst Omicron Sub-Variant Scare

Story Highlights
  • Speculations on detection of new sub-variant make rounds in India.
  • An Israeli scientist claims to have found subvariant of Omicron in pax from India.
  • 11 states infected with the BA.2.75- new sub variant; scientist claim.

India currently witnessing a surge in COVID-19 infections is reported to have been fuelled by a new sub-variant of Omicron. The mystery variant came to light after an Israeli scientist Dr Shay Fleishon, with the Central Virology Laboratory at Sheba Medical Center in Tel Hashomer, said that so far 85 sequences of the variant have been uploaded to Nextstrain, an open-source platform of genomic sequencing data.

According to the data uploaded the Omicron sub-variant identified as BA.2.75 was reported from 11 countries including India. A detailed investigation revealed the genome samples were from 10 states namely Delhi, Haryana, Himachal Pradesh, Jammu, Karnataka, Madhya Pradesh, Maharashtra, Telangana, Uttar Pradesh, and West Bengal.

Omicron and its subvariants are known to circumvent vaccine protection as well as take over the immunity developed from the previous infection. Apart from UK, US, Germany, Japan, Canada, Australia, and New Zealand have also been infected with the new sub-variant

While experts from around the world have flagged this new subvariant, health authorities including the WHO, US CDC, and India’s Ministry of Health and Family Welfare have not made any official statements about BA.2.75.

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