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7 UK returnees test positive for new Covid strain in Karnataka

Seven people who returned to Karnataka from the UK, were found to be infected with the mutated strain of coronavirus, state Health Minister K Sudhakar said on Wednesday.

India TV News Desk Edited by: India TV News Desk Bengaluru Updated on: December 30, 2020 12:17 IST
7 UK returnees test positive for new Covid strain in Karnataka
Image Source : PTI

7 UK returnees test positive for new Covid strain in Karnataka 

Seven people who returned to Karnataka from the UK, were found to be infected with the mutated strain of coronavirus, state Health Minister K Sudhakar said on Wednesday. The swab samples of 26 people who tested positive for COVID-19 were sent to NIMHANS to ascertain whether it is the new strain.  The 26 were among the 1,614 UK returnees, who were subjected to the tests. "Of the seven people, three are in Bengaluru and four in Shivamogga. All of them have been admitted to designated hospitals," Sudhakar told reporters. Forty six primary contacts of the seven people have been quarantined.

Noting that the intensity of the virus was less but it spreads faster, he said everyone must abide by the new guidelines released by the Centre to contain the UK variant. Twenty people across the country have been tested positive for the new UK variant genome of SARS-CoV2. 

Meanwhile, Union civil aviation minister Hardeep Singh Puri announced on Wednesday that the Centre has extended the temporary suspension of flights to and from the United Kingdom till January 7, 2021. The flights operations were suspended because of a new strain of the Sars-CoV-2 virus. 

READ MORE | Govt extends suspension of India-UK flights till January 7 

From November 25 to midnight of December 23, 2020 about 33,000 passengers disembarked at various Indian airports from the UK. All these passengers are being tracked and subjected by states to RT-PCR tests.

The new strain was first detected in the UK in September. In November, around a quarter of cases in London were the new variant. This reached nearly two-thirds of the cases in mid-December.

According to the Union Health Ministry, the variant strain has 14 non-synonymous (amino acid altering) mutations, 6 synonymous (non-amino-acid altering), and three deletions. Eight mutations are present in the Spike (S) gene which carries the binding site (Receptor Binding Domain) of the ACE2 receptors, which are the point of entry of the virus into the human respiratory cells.

 

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