Covid surge: States, UTs told to ramp up genome sequencing

The direction was issued during Friday’s meeting by the INSACOG which reviewed the COVID-19 data to check the possibility of any new emerging variant or sub-variant and ascertain the reasons behind the breakthrough infections.
Covid surge: States, UTs told to ramp up genome sequencing
Representative Image PTI

NEW DELHI: States and Union territories have been asked to submit a “larger number” of samples for whole genome sequencing from districts and areas which have seen a surge in COVID-19 cases over seven days, official sources said on Saturday.

The direction was issued during Friday’s meeting by the INSACOG which reviewed the COVID-19 data to check the possibility of any new emerging variant or sub-variant and ascertain the reasons behind the breakthrough infections.

“The idea behind asking states and Union territories to send a larger number of samples is to keep a closer watch over the current circulating sublineages of Omicron and its correlation to the current epidemiological picture,” an official said.

“Also, we want to see if we are missing out on any important clues regarding newer sub-variants during routine sequencing through the sentinel surveillance,” the official added.

To date, 10 states and Union territories — Maharashtra, Kerala, Delhi, Karnataka, Tamil Nadu, Haryana, Uttar Pradesh, Telangana, West Bengal and Gujarat have over 1,000 cases.

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