The DBT’s National Institute of Biomedical Genomics, Kalyani (West Bengal), together with its sister organisations — Institute of Life Sciences, Bhubaneshwar, Centre for DNA Fingerprinting and Diagnostics, Hyderabad, National Centre for Cell Sciences, Pune, Institute of Cell Sciences and Regenerative Medicine (INStem), and National Centre for Biological Sciences, Bengaluru – have sequenced of 1,058 genomes prior to now six months.
Saumitra Das, the director of the National Institute of Biomedical Genomics, stated the institutes began sequencing the virus from completely different components of the nation from April.
“Initially, there were different strains. But by June, we found that A2a strain of the virus is more predominantly found in India,” stated Das, whose institute was instrumental in sequencing round 500 genomes.
“We don’t see any major mutation that happened between June and now which can replace the A2a strain…There is no such indication,” Das stated.
On Saturday, an announcement by the Prime Minister’s Office stated, “Two pan-India studies on the Genome of SARS-CoV-2 (COVID-19 virus) in India conducted by ICMR and the Department of Biotechnology (DBT) suggest that the virus is genetically stable and there is no major mutation in the virus.”
Last month, Union Health Minister Harsh Vardhan had stated no important or drastic mutations have been present in strains of SARS-CoV-2 in India until now.
Mutation sometimes refers back to the property of a virus to endure adjustments when it multiplies and the virus could develop some new strains after it replicates.
In some circumstances, the brand new strains are typically much less efficient and due to this fact die out quickly, whereas in different circumstances they could develop into extra highly effective and result in quicker unfold of the virus.
There had been considerations in some quarters that any main mutation detected within the novel coronavirus may hinder the event of an efficient vaccine. However, some latest world research have stated the vaccines presently being developed for COVID-19 shouldn’t be affected by latest mutations.
Genome sequencing is determining the order of DNA nucleotides, or constructing blocks. It helps in understanding how genes work collectively to direct the expansion, growth and upkeep of a complete organism.
The Department of Biotechnology and Council of Scientific and Industrial Research (CSIR) – each underneath the Ministry of Science and Technology — have sequenced hundreds of genomes thus far.
Asked whether or not the present mutation would have an effect on India’s vaccine or diagnostics technique, Das stated, “It should not.”
“This mutation should not affect the antigenic epitope used for vaccine development. So it is (applicable for) the diagnostics as well. As such we don’t see continuous mutation but there will be drift,” Das stated.
He added that there can be one or two mutations “here and there”, however no main mutation is more likely to happen.
He, nonetheless, didn’t rule out mutations in future. “We don’t rule that out…it may not happen in future but we want a continuous surveillance.”
Das stated the plan is to constantly monitor the sequences.
In July, Rakesh Mishra, director of CSIR’s Centre for Cellular and Molecular Biology, had stated the pressure of the novel coronavirus in a majority of circumstances in India is the predominant ‘subtype’ present in different components of the globe, a uniformity that bodes effectively for the efficacy of a vaccine or drug developed anyplace on the planet.
According to Mishra, the A2a clade, additionally essentially the most predominant pressure globally, accounts for 80-90 per cent of the genomes from India.
His institute had until then submitted 315 genomes on viral genome sequence repositories of the coronavirus and analysed over 1,700 publicly obtainable virus sequences that have been sampled throughout the nation, “The virus is mutating at a rate of 26 times per year (once every 15 days) which is in accordance with the rate observed globally as it hints at the stability of the virus. The chances that existing clades (subtype/ strain) of the virus mutate into something more dangerous are very less,” Mishra had informed PTI.
“So far, the mutations analysed in our data also suggest the same thing – they are either neutral or deleterious (for themselves), and therefore result in a weaker virus,” Mishra stated.