Pune Divisional Commissioner Saurabh Rao has tested positive for coronavirus infection for the second time in two months. Rao had received the second dose of Covishield on Friday. He developed symptoms later and tested positive for the infection on Monday.
Confirming that he had tested positive, Rao told The Indian Express, ”It is puzzling as on May 4, I had a test done which showed a fair amount of antibodies. Doctors have advised me to send the sample to NIV for genomic sequencing to understand which strain of the virus has led to the infection.”
He is currently in home quarantine.
Rao has been actively involved in the Covid-19 response and vaccination efforts of the state and was instrumental in making decisions about restrictions and night curfew in Pune. He had earlier tested positive for coronavirus infection in mid-March.
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He had been due for his second dose of Covishield on March 23. However, as per protocol, the scheduled dose could not be taken due to the infection. He finally took the second vaccine dose on Friday.
Highly-placed officials said it was possible that Rao had the infection prior to taking the second dose of the vaccine. Experts said that reinfection is possible post-vaccination, and it could be due to a previous variant or a new one.
The mode of administration of the vaccine determines the immune response, experts said, adding that when the vaccine is injected in the deltoid muscle antibodies, IgG and IgM are produced which help prevent serious disease, but not the infection.
Experts drew an analogy to the oral polio vaccine, which produces response of IgA type and does not allow the infection at all.
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