Family portrait of novel coronavirus reveals a new type in India

As of now, the total cases in the country are 88,74,290. And in the last 24 hours, 40,791 have recovered, taking the tally of recoveries to 82,90,370, the health ministry said on Tuesday (November 17).| Image - Immayabharathi K

Like every living organism, the novel coronavirus is undergoing mutation, a subtle change in the genomic sequence. Roughly, one generation of novel coronavirus lasts for about 10 hours. Obviously, the pace of the genetic mutation is much faster than what we observe in humans.

It is said novel coronavirus mutates once in fifteen days. Each mutation is a new variant. Hundreds of variants have been identified so far. Phylogenetic analysis of genome from India reveals a hitherto unknown new type, accounting for whopping 41.2% of the sampled patients.

To put unfounded speculations at bay, a cautious CSIR tweeted: “There is no data for us yet to say that the new virus population (Clade A3i) among Indians is any more or less dangerous than the other virus population (Clade A2) present in India.”

Phylogenetic tree

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