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Front Genet ; 12: 753648, 2021.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1605591


Globally, SARS-CoV-2 has moved from one tide to another with ebbs in between. Genomic surveillance has greatly aided the detection and tracking of the virus and the identification of the variants of concern (VOC). The knowledge and understanding from genomic surveillance is important for a populous country like India for public health and healthcare officials for advance planning. An integrative analysis of the publicly available datasets in GISAID from India reveals the differential distribution of clades, lineages, gender, and age over a year (Apr 2020-Mar 2021). The significant insights include the early evidence towards B.1.617 and B.1.1.7 lineages in the specific states of India. Pan-India longitudinal data highlighted that B.1.36* was the predominant clade in India until January-February 2021 after which it has gradually been replaced by the B.1.617.1 lineage, from December 2020 onward. Regional analysis of the spread of SARS-CoV-2 indicated that B.1.617.3 was first seen in India in the month of October in the state of Maharashtra, while the now most prevalent strain B.1.617.2 was first seen in Bihar and subsequently spread to the states of Maharashtra, Gujarat, and West Bengal. To enable a real time understanding of the transmission and evolution of the SARS-CoV-2 genomes, we built a transmission map available on Based on our analysis, the rate estimate for divergence in our dataset was 9.48 e-4 substitutions per site/year for SARS-CoV-2. This would enable pandemic preparedness with the addition of future sequencing data from India available in the public repositories for tracking and monitoring the VOCs and variants of interest (VOI). This would help aid decision making from the public health perspective.

Vaccines (Basel) ; 10(1)2021 Dec 31.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1580341


This study elucidated the clinical, humoral immune response and genomic analysis of vaccine breakthrough (VBT) infections after ChAdOx1 nCoV-19/Covishield vaccine in healthcare workers (HCWs). Amongst 1858 HCWs, 1639 had received either two doses (1346) or a single dose (293) of ChAdOx1 nCoV-19 vaccine. SARS-CoV-2 IgG antibodies and neutralizing antibodies were measured in the vaccinated group and the development of SARS-CoV-2 infection was monitored.Forty-six RT-PCR positive samples from the 203 positive samples were subjected to whole genome sequencing (WGS). Of the 203 (10.92%) infected HCWs, 21.46% (47/219) were non-vaccinated, which was significantly more than 9.52% (156/1639) who were vaccinated and infection was higher in doctors and nurses. Unvaccinated HCWs had 1.57 times higher risk compared to partially vaccinated HCWs and 2.49 times higher risk than those who were fully vaccinated.The partially vaccinated were at higher risk than the fully vaccinated (RR 1.58). Antibody non-response was seen in 3.44% (4/116), low antibody levels in 15.51% (18/116) and medium levels were found in 81.03% (94/116). Fully vaccinated HCWs had a higher antibody response at day 42 than those who were partially vaccinated (8.96 + 4.00 vs. 7.17 + 3.82). Whole genome sequencing of 46 samples revealed that the Delta variant (B.1.617.2) was predominant (69.5%). HCWs who had received two doses of vaccine showed better protection from mild, moderate, or severe infection, with a higher humoral immune response than those who had received a single dose. The genomic analysis revealed the predominance of the Delta variant (B.1.617.2) in the VBT infections.

Science ; 374(6570): 995-999, 2021 Nov 19.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1526449


Delhi, the national capital of India, experienced multiple severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) outbreaks in 2020 and reached population seropositivity of >50% by 2021. During April 2021, the city became overwhelmed by COVID-19 cases and fatalities, as a new variant, B.1.617.2 (Delta), replaced B.1.1.7 (Alpha). A Bayesian model explains the growth advantage of Delta through a combination of increased transmissibility and reduced sensitivity to immune responses generated against earlier variants (median estimates: 1.5-fold greater transmissibility and 20% reduction in sensitivity). Seropositivity of an employee and family cohort increased from 42% to 87.5% between March and July 2021, with 27% reinfections, as judged by increased antibody concentration after a previous decline. The likely high transmissibility and partial evasion of immunity by the Delta variant contributed to an overwhelming surge in Delhi.

COVID-19/epidemiology , COVID-19/virology , Genome, Viral , Adolescent , Adult , COVID-19/immunology , COVID-19/transmission , Child , Humans , Immune Evasion , India/epidemiology , Molecular Epidemiology , Phylogeny , Reinfection , Seroepidemiologic Studies , Young Adult