Business Standard

Cases of B.A. sub-lineage of Omicron found in Maharashtra for first time

Four cases of B.A. 4 variant and three cases of B.A. 5 variant of Omicron detected in Maharashtra, says state health dept

Photo by Viktor Forgacs on Unsplash

Press Trust of India Mumbai
For the first time, four patients of B.A. 4 variant and three cases of B.A. 5 variants of the Omicron sub-lineage of coronavirus have been found in Maharashtra, an official of the state health department said on Saturday.

All of them had only mild symptoms and were treated at home, he added.

These sub-lineages of Omicron were found in April in some parts of the world including South Africa, but until now no cases had been detected in the state.

“The whole genome sequencing was conducted by the Institute of Science Education and Research, and its finding has been confirmed by the Indian Biological Data Centre in Faridabad. As many as seven patients, all from Pune, were detected with the infection of the sub-lineage of Omicron,” the official said.

“Four patients have the infection of B.A. 4 variant while others have contracted the B.A. 5. Four of them are men and three women. Four patients are above 50 years of age while two are in 20-40 age group while one patient is a nine-year-old child,” he added.

“All the six adults have completed both the dosages of vaccine while one has taken the booster shot too. The child is unvaccinated. All of them had mild symptoms of COVID-19 and were treated successfully in home isolation,” the official said.
Their samples were taken between May 4 and 18. Two of them had travelled to South Africa and Belgium, while three had travelled to Kerala and Karnataka. The other two patients had no recent travel history, he said. 

Dr Pradeep Awate, epidemiologist and the State Surveillance Officer, Integrated Disease Surveillance Programme, said that B.A. 4 and B.A. 5 are sub-lineages of Omicron which itself is known for being mild.

Hence, "there is nothing to worry about its sub-lineages,” he said.

“However, it is highly transmissible, which is one of the reasons behind the growing number of COVID-19 cases in the last couple of weeks. The cases are steadily going up everywhere, but patients are not being hospitalised in large numbers,” Awate added.

“There is no severity found in the infection of these Omicron sub-lineages. But state officials are closely watching the situation,” he said. On May 22, a B.A.4. case was found in Tamil Nadu while a B.A.5 infection was reported in Telangana.

(Only the headline and picture of this report may have been reworked by the Business Standard staff; the rest of the content is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)

Don't miss the most important news and views of the day. Get them on our Telegram channel

First Published: May 28 2022 | 6:28 PM IST

Explore News