India’s First Omicron BQ.1 Subvariant Found In Pune Sample

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Pune, 18th October 2022: India detected its first case of the Omicron BQ.1 subvariant on Monday in a patient sample from Pune. The BQ.1 variant is a descendant of the Omicron BA.5 variant, which is currently dominant in the United States of America (USA).


A scientist from the National Institute of Virology (NIV) said, “These are all next-generation strains or offspring of the Omicron variant of SARS-Cov-2. Since Omicron’s emergence in January this year, we have not seen a completely new variant of the virus. However, these sub-variants, called sublineages, also have the potential to cause surges, so they should not be ignored. That said, the BA.2.75 sublineage of Omicron’s BA.2 variant continues to dominate the scene in India.” The BF.7 Omicron subvariant was also recently detected in Gujarat.

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Scientists and experts state that closer monitoring of the evolution and severity of the subvariant is required. They have also suggested booster doses for at-risk patients and elderly citizens. Experts are currently investigating if the developed vaccinations are effective against the strain.


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