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Omicron's BA.2.12.1 mutant found in a Delhi patient, all you need to know about the sub-variant

Scientists associated with INSACOG said that this new sub-variant appears to be more infectious than BA.2 which was very active in India in January.

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In a major concern, amid the surge in Covid cases in national capital, Omicron's BA.2.12.1 mutant has been identified in a patient from Delhi. A top source of the Genomic Consortium (INSACOG), an organisation that monitors the nature of the Covid virus, told Moneycontrol that the new mutant BA.2.12.1 could be the reason for the rise in cases in Delhi-NCR.

Dr Sujeet Kumar Singh, director, National Centre for Disease Control (NCDC), confirmed the detection of the variant in Delhi but did not divulge further. Sources, however, told Moneycontrol that the BA.2.12.1 variant has been detected in several samples from the national capital that underwent whole genome sequencing over the last few days.

Read | First case of new Omicron XE variant detected in India

Please note that B.A. 2.12.1 is the only variant associated with the BA.2 sub-variant of Omicron. BA.2.12.1 as well as BA.2.12, are other sub variants of Omicron BA.2, which were recently identified by the US Centers for Disease Control (CDC) in New York and some other parts of the US.

It is said that this variant is behind the increase in cases in the United States. Scientists associated with INSACOG said that this new sub-variant appears to be more infectious than BA.2 which was very active in India in January.

What we know so far about BA.2.12.1

Scientists associated with INSACOG said that this new sub-variant appears to be more infectious than BA.2.

This new mutant also appeared capable of causing re-infection in people who have been infected with the Covid-19 virus before.

A scientist associated with the Covid-19 Surveillance Program in US said BA.2.12. 1, is more infectious than Omicron's BA.2 sub-variant.

Scientists still have to find out how dangerous and effective this new BA.2.12. 1 variant is as more people get vaccinated worldover.

The new sub-variant BA.2.12.1 has not yet been declared by the World Health Organisation as a variant of concern.

CDC data shows that BA.2.12.1 caused 19% of the new cases in the US last week, up from 11% a week before and 7% a week before that.

At least 21 viral offspring of the BA.2 have been reported globally. But except BA.2.12.1, others have mutations of little significance.

While BA.2 still is the dominant variant in the US, BA.2.12.1 now accounts for roughly one in five new cases across the country.

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