Coronavirus strains B.1.617 and B.1 which are the major variants identified from positive samples in Andhra Pradesh, Telangana and Karnataka in April, are very infectious and are also spreading rapidly in the younger age groups apart from the adults, a statement from the Andhra Pradesh government said Thursday.
B.1.617 is a double mutant that gets its name from two notable mutations found in other variants that appeared together for the first time in this new strain and was first detected in western India.
The genome sequencing of positive samples was done at CCMB Hyderabad, and Andhra government has been sending 250 samples to CCMB for genome sequencing every month.
The statement said the N440K strain (B.1.36) was detected in June-July 2020 from samples of south AP, Telangana and Karnataka. This strain was prevalent in December 2020 and January and February 2021 and dropped down drastically in March.
“B.1.617 and B.1 are the major strains identified from the samples of south India from the positives of the April month data, which is very infectious and is also spreading in the younger age groups apart from the adults,” the statement said.