AUGUST 7, 2021
A case of Eta variant of SARS-COV-2 was confirmed in Karnataka’s Mangaluru on Thursday in a sample taken four months ago. The Eta variant (B.1.525) was detected in a Mangaluru man who had travelled to Qatar, according to the state bulletin on Thursday.
This is not the first case of Eta variant in the state, the Times of India quoted Dr V Ravi, state nodal officer and chairman of Committee for Covid-19 Whole Genome Sequencing (WGS). It was first reported in April 2020 when the variant was detected in two samples at Nimhans’ virology lab through genomic sequencing in April 2020 and belonged to patients from Mangaluru, he said.
What is Known About Eta Variant:
– According to the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), the Eta variant was first identified in United Kingdom and Nigeria in December last year.
– The nomenclature Eta was given in June 2021 by the World Health Organisation (WHO).
– Eta has been categorised as a ‘variant of interest’, which according to the WHO means the strain has been “identified to cause significant community transmission or multiple COVID-19 clusters, in multiple countries with increasing relative prevalence alongside increasing number of cases over time, or other apparent epidemiological impacts to suggest an emerging risk to global public health.”
– The Eta variant does not carry the same N501Y mutation found in Alpha, Beta and Gamma, but carries the same E484K-mutation as found in the Gamma, Zeta, and Beta variants.
– The strain also carries the same deletion of the amino acids histidine and valine in positions 69 and 70, as found in Alpha, N439K variant (B.1.141 and B.1.258) and Y453F variant.
– According to reports, this variant is different from all other variants as it has both E484K and F888L mutations.
– In July this year, one case of Eta variant was reported in Aizawl in Mizoram.
Follow the government’s latest travel advice if you are planning a trip outside India or travelling back to India from affected areas. You can also read World Health Organization’s advice on basic protective measures against the virus. WHO has also busted some myths surrounding coronavirus. The Ministry of Health’s special helpline is available at +91-11-23978046 and email@example.com.