New Delhi | Jagran News Desk: The Union Health Ministry on Wednesday informed that a new 'double mutant' variant of the coronavirus has been detected in India. The Ministry has stated that many 'Variants of Concerns' (VOCs) have been found in 18 states of the country. This means that different types of coronavirus have been found in many parts of the country which can have a detrimental effect on health.

This comes at a time when the country is witnessing an alarming surge in daily COVID-19 cases. According to the Union Health Ministry's data on Saturday morning, over 62,000 new COVID-19 cases have been registered in India in one day, which is the highest one-day toll since October last year. The grim situation reminds us of the crisis faced by the country last year. According to the Health Ministry, there are many facts in this latest wave of Coronavirus, which have caused worries among the authorities. The most important among them is the double mutant variant of Coronavirus to be found in India.

What is a double mutant variant of COVID-19?

India researchers have found a SARS-CoV-2 variant that has two mutations coming together at the same time. The detection of the double mutant virus in India came at a time when the second wave of COVID-19 is gathering momentum in the country. This variant carries what's being called the E484Q and L452R mutations and was detected in samples tested in Maharashtra. According to the health ministry, "such mutations confer immune escape and increased infectivity" to the coronavirus. However, the health ministry has not categorised the double mutant variant as a "variant of concern" (VOC). While over 200 samples were reported to contain the double mutant Covid variant, the UK variant was sequenced in more than 700 samples.

How dangerous is the double mutant variant?

The double mutant variant is dangerous because it can not only escape from the immune system of the body but also spreads the infection rapidly in the body. This variant can also be dangerous because there have been two changes in the same form of the virus. The double mutant variant is said to be more infectious and transmissible as compared to the SARS-CoV-2.

What is a variant?

There is a constant change in any virus and it is a natural process. The virus keeps on changing its internal structure by changing its form. When a virus changes ITS form, it is not complete and some of its components are left and this is what we call mutation. When that mutation has an effect on humans, it is called a variant. This new variant of Coronavirus has also been found in 16 other countries of the world including Britain, Denmark, Singapore, Japan and Australia.

Posted By: Talibuddin Khan