The Indian SARS-CoV-2 Genomics Consortium (INSACOG) said in its latest bulletin on Sunday that Omicron is now in community transmission in India and has become dominant in various metros, where new cases have been growing rapidly.
INSACOG is a partnership of 38 labs that monitors genomic variations in SARS-CoV-2, the new coronavirus that causes COVID-19. It was formed by the Union Health and Family Welfare Ministry, the Department of Biotechnology, and others.
While most Omicron cases thus far have been asymptomatic or moderate, hospitalizations and ICU cases have been rising in the current wave, according to the two-page bulletin, which was issued on Sunday. The threat level has remained unchanged.
It also said that the newly reported novel SARS-CoV-2 variant — B.1.640.2 — lineage was being monitored and that although it displayed signs of immune escape, it was not yet a variant of concern. The alert said, “So far, no case has been discovered in India.”
It went on to say that the BA.2 lineage made up a significant portion of the population in India and that S-gene dropout-based screening was likely to result in a large number of false negatives. All Omicron lineages have been authorised, and tests appropriate for PCR-based screening have been approved. The S-gene drop-out, like Omicron, was a genetic variation.
Source: The Hindu