Bhubaneswar: About 98 per cent of Covid-19 cases in Odisha carried the highly-contagious Omicron variant during ongoing third wave, the Institute of Life Sciences (ILS) in Bhubaneswar confirmed in its report Thursday based on a genome sequencing of infected persons.
A source said that the premier research institute has sequenced as many as 241 samples in between January 27 and February 4, this year. Out of the total 241 samples, the Omicron variant was detected in 235 samples and Delta variant in six samples, the source added.
“Among the 14 samples received from Angul district, 13 were found with Omicron BA2 variant. Similarly, 27 Omicron cases were found in 30 samples received from Cuttack. Out of a total of 49 samples from Khurda district, 44 were tested with Omicron,” an ILS official said.
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Moreover, at least 11 Omicron infections were detected in 16 samples received from Gajapati district, 46 Omicron cases were found from 47 samples of Ganjam district and 9 out of 12 samples of Jagatsinghpur tested Omicron positive, the ILS genome sequencing report added.
Meanwhile, health expert Dr Srikanth Dhar said that even though the Covid-19 cases across the country is witnessing a downtrend, around 60 per cent of the total cases have been detected with Omicron.
New subvariant of coronavirus’s Omicron variant BA2 is a higher strain as compared to that of the previously detected BA1. However, recent genome sequencing details can be summed up saying that almost all the Covid-19 cases reported in the state during third wave are of Omicron variant, the senior health expert Dhar further said.
Notably, the districts which reported 100 per cent detection of Omicron variant cases during the ILS genome sequencing include Jajpur (8), Kalahandi (5), Kendrapara (12), Mayurbhanj (17), Nabarangpur (16), Sundargarh (3) and Rayagada (1), the institute report mentioned.
It was presumed earlier that the Delta variant would remain higher as the death cases were higher at some point of time. The things have changed now. It was also speculated that the Omicron cases will supersede the Delta cases, which the ILS report has confirmed.
The detailed data provided in ILS report is a good indication that we may soon experience a coronavirus-free human society. However, a possibility of further mutation of the Covid cannot be ruled out.
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