India successfully cultures new strain of novel coronavirus from UK: I…


India successfully cultures the new viral strain on the horizon (UK-variant of SARS-CoV-2), the Indian Council of Medical Research (ICMR) said, on Saturday.

“SARS-CoV-2, the virus causing Covid-19, was being tracked through countrywide network of ICMR-laboratories since early days of the epidemic in India,” the research centre said.

According to the centre, no country has yet reported successful isolation and culture of the UK-variant of SARS-CoV-2.

A total of 29 people have tested positive for the new UK variant of SARS-CoV-2 in India so far, the Union Health Ministry said on Friday. These include the 25 cases which were announced till Thursday.

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“UK-variant of the virus, with all signature changes, is now successfully isolated and cultured at the National Institute of Virology (MV) from the clinical specimens collected from UK-returnees,” it said in a statement.

Vero cell lines were used by the scientists of ICMR-NIV to culture the novel variant of the virus from UK, it said.

The number of fresh Covid-19 cases was recorded below 20,000 in India on Saturday, taking the country’s caseload to 1,03,05,788, while the number of people who have recuperated from the disease crossed 99 lakh, according to the health ministry.

According to the Indian Council of Medical Research (ICMR), 17,39,41,658 samples were tested for Covid-19 in the country till January 1, including 8,29,964 on Friday.


(With inputs from PTI)


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