India is suffering from the second wave of coronavirus with the country recording world’s spike in new COVID-19 cases daily from the past few days. In India on Friday recorded over 3.86 lakh cases taking the overall caseload to 1.87 crore and over 3,400 deaths in a day with total death to 2.08 lakh.
India is also facing an acute shortage of hospital beds, medical oxygen and essential medicines to treat COVID-19.
Scientists are studying what led to this unexpected surge, and particularly a variant of the novel coronavirus first detected in India.
Variant called B.1.617 has been report in some 17 countries.
The B.1.617 variant contains two key mutations to the outer spike portion of the virus that attaches to human cells.
The World Health Organization (WHO) said the predominant lineage of B.1.617 was first identified in India last December.
WHO has described it as a “variant of interest“.
It may have mutations that would make the virus more transmissible and cause more severe disease or evade vaccine immunity.
Indian Variants Reason for Surge in COVID-19 Cases?
According to the WHO :
It’s hard to say whether the new variants are behind the surge in cases and more study is need to prove this.
WHO said that laboratory-based studies of limited sample size suggest potential increased transmissibility.
The situation is complicated because the highly transmissible B.117 variant first detected in the U.K. is behind spikes in some parts of India.
In New Delhi, UK variant cases almost doubled during the second half of March.
The Indian variant is widely present in Maharashtra.
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