A lot of panic created among people after reports revealed that the coronavirus variant N440K is more contagious and spreading a lot more in southern states of the country.
This comes amid speculations about the N440K variant of Covid-19 being the reason for the sharp spike in new infections in Andhra Pradesh in the last few weeks.
As per reports, Centre for Cellular and Molecular Biology (CCMB) Advisor Rakesh Mishra said that the N440K strain which was present in the samples of Andhra Pradesh, Karnataka, Telangana will fade away soon.
The director earlier said, “The novel variants that are worrying many countries globally have been identified with only a low prevalence in India so far. These include the variants with immune-escape E484K mutation and the N501Y mutation with a higher transmission rate. However, their apparent low prevalence might be simply because not enough sequencing has been done. More coronavirus genomes need to be sequenced across the country to accurately identify the emergence of these and other new variants.”
According to CSIR-CCMB study, a few novel variants are spreading more in some states of India. “We now have emerging evidence that N440K is spreading a lot more in southern states. Closer surveillance is needed to understand its spread properly. Accurate and timely detection of new variants that may show greater infectivity or worse clinical symptoms, including immune escape, will be extremely important to preempt disastrous consequences,” said Dr. Mishra.
The strain is mostly found in the states of Andhra Pradesh, Karnataka, Maharashtra, Tamil Nadu and Telangana.
The experts also advised to strictly comply with the Covid-19 appropriate behaviours. Dr. Surabhi Srivastava, the lead author of the study said the success in the development and administration of vaccines is promising but prevention measures, such as wearing masks, carrying hand sanitisers, social distancing will be the most effective tools in defeating the virus.
While people are panicking about the seriousness of the newly found strain, researchers are suggesting that there is no need for people to panic as the strain will fade away soon.