Hindustan Times ST (Jaipur)

Delta variant led to surge in cases: study

Variant first found in India is 50% more infectious, behind the second wave of infections in Bengal, AP, Delhi, Gujarat

- Agencies

NEW DELHI: The surge of Covid-19 cases in the country in the last two months shows a correlatio­n with the rise in Delta variant -- or B.1.617 lineage -- of the Sarscov-2, according to the Indian SARS-COV-2 Consortium on Genomics (INSACOG), a grouping of 10 national laboratori­es.

April and May witnessed a deadly second wave of coronaviru­s cases that swept through the country stretching the healthcare infrastruc­ture to its limits.

According to INSACOG, B.1.1.7 lineage of the virus, which was first identified in the United Kingdom, is declining in proportion across India in the last one and half month. The B.1.1.7 variant of the coronaviru­s has been named “Alpha”.

The Delta variant was first reported from Maharashtr­a but it is now seen in other states such as West Bengal, Andhra Pradesh, Delhi, Gujarat, Telangana, which were the worst hit in the second surge.

“The current surge in cases seen over the last two months in some states shows a correlatio­n with the rise in the B.1.617 lineage of Sars-cov-2,” the INSACOG said. The B.1.617 lineage has fur

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