Covid-19 New Variant Spreading Indian Government on The Alert

COVID-19 New Variant: Due to JN.1’s rapid increase, WHO has classified it separately as “variants of interest” yet considers it poses “low” public health risks worldwide.

Indian authorities recently became aware of a new subvariant JN.1 coronavirus, with scientists closely studying this strain. Dr V K Paul of NITI Aayog (Health) reports 21 COVID-19 subvariant JN.1 cases across India; the Indian Council of Medical Research is working on genome sequencing.

Nineteen of the 21 cases have been reported from Goa and one from Kerala and Maharashtra.

JN.1 variant (BA. first emerged in 2023 and is a direct descendent from BA.2.86 (Pirola lineage) of SARS CoV-2, first identified in 2023 and distinguishable phylogenetically from other Omicron XBB lines such as EG.5.1 or HK.3 by its high degree of immune evasion with over 30 mutations to spike (5) proteins; according to ministry reports this indicates an extreme level of immunity evasion.

The World Health Organization categorises JN.1 as one of its essential variants. Doctors from Delhi’s Safdarjung Hospital warned patients not to become alarmed about this new strain of influenza; instead, they advised patients to remain vigilant.

Dr Rohit Kumar from Safdarjung Hospital’s Pulmonary Department stated: “COVID, an RNA virus, changes its form with time. Now there has been the appearance of JN.1, but Delhi has yet to witness an outbreak.”

“We’re keeping an eye out for Corona cases. Patients who test positive will also undergo genome sequencing so any new variants could be identified – though no such variants have yet been reported in Delhi,” said Dr Kumar.

However, the doctor cautioned patients not to ignore symptoms they may be experiencing now.

Consult a doctor immediately if you experience sore or irritated throat pain, cough, chest pains or breathing difficulties. Particular care must be taken with those suffering from respiratory illnesses and asthmatics;

Those with serious diseases should also take extra precautions during this period as many victims of COVID had preexisting conditions, including diabetes or heart disease, that required additional protection against COVID-19 infection.

JN.1 Covid Version Has Some New Updates

  • On Wednesday, two deaths attributed to Covid-19 were reported in Karnataka. The cause of death is not known. It may have been caused by the new subvariant JN.1.
  • Mansukh Mandaviya, Union Health Minister, convened a meeting of representatives from the Department of Health. He reminded them that COVID has not ended. He encouraged states to monitor new cases based on symptoms and severity to plan an appropriate response.
  • As the number of Covid cases increases, hospitals across the nation are alert. Dr Rohit Kumar said that the hospital is on high alert and has sent samples to be sequenced.
  • In the Maharashtra district Sindhudurg, a 41-year-old man has tested positive for Covid-19 subvariant JN.1 new. The patient’s identity was not disclosed.
  • Kerala reported 300 active COVID-19 cases and three deaths as per the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare on 20th Dec.
  • West Bengal Health Department continues to monitor influenza-like illness and severe acute respiratory infection (SARI) by the central guidelines.
  • Haryana Government said RT PCR tests would be conducted to detect Influenza-like diseases and extreme acute respiratory conditions.
  • Delhi is also alerted to the arrival of the new Covid variant. Saurabh Bharadwaj, Delhi’s Health Minister, said that oxygen cylinders and ventilator beds are “being reviewed again”.
  • Karnataka’s government issued an alert urging people over 60, pregnant women and nursing mothers to avoid crowded, poorly ventilated, closed spaces.
  • Gujarat currently has 13 coronavirus cases being treated at home, prompting its government to warn people not to panic and remain vigilant. They conducted a mock exercise at more than 5,700 hospitals to test their readiness to handle a health emergency related to the JN.1 variant strain.
  • Goa reported 19 active COVID-19 patients, all of whom have mild symptoms.
  • Odisha has not been aware of any Covid cases in the last week. The state government has warned seniors to be cautious.
  • Yesterday, Jaisalmer in Rajasthan reported two new cases of coronavirus.
  • The World Health Organisation classified JN.1 as a distinct “variant” of interest due to its rapid spread. Still, it stated that it poses a low global public health threat.
  • The Indian Council of Medical Research is currently working on the genome sequencing of a new JN.One variant.

JN.1 Covid Version

JN.1 Variant 1 (BA. first surfaced late in 2023 as an offshoot from BA.2.86 (Pirola lineage) of SARS-CoV-2.

The BA.2.86 strain was initially identified in August 2023 and differs phylogenetically from all currently circulating SARS-CoV-2 Omicron XBB strains, including EG.5.1, HK.3, and HK.3.

BA.2.86 contains over 30 mutations to its spike (5) proteins, suggesting high levels of immune evasion. JN.1 first surfaced in Denmark and Israel at the end of July 2023.


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