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ICMR confirms B.1.617.2 COVID strain in 5 samples sent from Silchar

By Staff Correspondent
ICMR confirms B.1.617.2 COVID strain in 5 samples sent from Silchar

Silchar, June 5: As per the World Health Organisation (WHO), B.1.617.2 which is one of the three strains of B.1.617 COVID-19 variant detected in India is "variant of concern." Amidst the spree of deaths due to the second wave of COVID-19 and the surge in positive cases since April this year, the Silchar Medical College and Hospital (SMCH) had selected five random samples of patients whose CT value were below 22 indicating a very high viral load and sent those for genome sequencing to the ICMR-Regional Medical Research Centre (RMRC) Lahowal in Dibrugarh to gauge the pattern of the virus in this part of the region.

On Saturday, Dr Debadatta Dhar Chanda, professor and head Department of Microbiology at SMCH cum Principal Investigator at the Viral Research Diagnostic Laboratory (VRDL) and in-charge of Covid-19 testing laboratory at the hospital said "the result of the five voluntarily sent samples have been affirmed by the ICMR to be B.1.617.2 strain in Barak Valley alike the national pattern. This strain is more contagious."

Under the circumstances, Dr Dhar Chanda who was also afflicted with COVID-19 and now recovering, informed that as per Government instructions, SMCH will send at least 15 samples to Kolkata around June 10 for further check.

Moreover, Dr Dhar Chanda said that vaccination is a must to put a check on the fatalities and urged that people must not lower their guard against the virus and must continue adhering to COVID-19 appropriate behaviour.

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