Is the current testing, sequencing strategy missing Omicron cases in India?

Positive samples sent for genome sequencing to confirm for the Omicron variant are almost primarily restricted to international passengers. Not only are the testing rates across India low, most of the RT-PCR test kits used in most States do not have the S-gene target in the primer, which can detect the BA.1 sub-lineage. Also, the … Continue reading Is the current testing, sequencing strategy missing Omicron cases in India?

Natural immunity is superior to protection conferred by vaccination but not a safe, preferable option

A large real-world study found natural immunity offers superior and long-lasting protection than vaccination. But vaccination was still equally effective in preventing deaths. The study does not tell if the level and duration of protection varies depending on the severity of the disease, and whether asymptomatic infection confers the same protection as those with the … Continue reading Natural immunity is superior to protection conferred by vaccination but not a safe, preferable option

India unlikely to witness a huge surge in cases in September

While NITI Aayog has predicted four-five lakh cases a day in September, the ground reality suggests otherwise. Daily cases in all States except Kerala have been steadily declining since the second wave peaked in early May. Unlike in other countries such as the U.S. which is witnessing a surge in cases caused by the Delta … Continue reading India unlikely to witness a huge surge in cases in September

Is the race to reach herd immunity like chasing a mirage?

The emergence of highly contagious new variants, breakthrough infections even among the fully vaccinated and such people spreading the virus to others, and reinfections in the unvaccinated have made the race to reach the magical herd immunity threshold to successfully break the transmission chain and return to normal times looks like chasing a mirage. In … Continue reading Is the race to reach herd immunity like chasing a mirage?

India will have 8-10 lakh cases a day when second wave peaks in mid-May, says Bhramar Mukherjee

Even when we saw the uptick in mid-February, we were dismissive and continued with data denial. The nonchalance, negligence, complacency and hubris cannot be ignored. We have estimated death underreporting by a factor of two-five in the first wave. Now with the surge, the reporting infrastructure has probably eclipsed dramatically. So I expect the underreporting … Continue reading India will have 8-10 lakh cases a day when second wave peaks in mid-May, says Bhramar Mukherjee

COVID-19: Protection against reinfection may last only for months

A longitudinal cohort COVID-19 study undertaken in India has found that infected people lack meaningful immunity against SARS-CoV-2 virus to prevent reinfection months later. The study found that 20-30% of infected people had declining virus neutralising activity despite having stable seropositivity six months later. The declining neutralising activity seen in 20-30% of infected people would … Continue reading COVID-19: Protection against reinfection may last only for months

India will add four million more cases by May 1, says Giridhara Babu

A small proportion of the population might have reinfections due to waning antibodies. With newer areas seeing the surge in cases, we cannot rule out older variants spreading to these areas. There may be a dual problem facing the country. The old and newer variants might be in circulation in the uninfected regions in an … Continue reading India will add four million more cases by May 1, says Giridhara Babu

Duration of protection against SARS-CoV-2 may be short

A study that monitored 10 healthy individuals for more than 35 years revealed that reinfection with the same seasonal coronavirus occurred frequently at 12 months after infection. This suggests that the duration of protection against SARS-CoV-2 reinfection too may not be long.

Second case of confirmed coronavirus reinfection reported

Using genome sequencing researchers at Reno School of Medicine, University of Nevada have confirmed a case of coronavirus reinfection. Unlike the first reported case of confirmed reinfection in Hong Kong who was asymptomatic the second time, the U.S. adult exhibited severe symptoms when reinfected. About five days after the first case of confirmed reinfection by … Continue reading Second case of confirmed coronavirus reinfection reported

A case of coronavirus reinfection in Hong Kong confirmed by genome sequencing

Using genome sequencing, researchers at the University of Hong Kong have found a rare instance of reinfection with novel coronavirus for the second time, four-and-a-half months after the first infection. The first viral genome belongs to GISAID clade V, while the second genome belongs to GISAID clade G. Using genome sequencing, researchers at the University … Continue reading A case of coronavirus reinfection in Hong Kong confirmed by genome sequencing