USJ researchers found Four mutant Covid Delta variants with two new Sri Lankan mutations (A701S, R24C)

USJ researchers including Prof. Neelika MalavigeDr. Chandima Jeewandara from the Allergy, Immunology and Cell Biology Unit of the Department of Immunology Molecular and Molecular Medicine of the University of Sri Jayewardenepura found delta variant with 4 mutations in the western province of Sri Lanka.

Out of these four mutations, 2 mutations (A701S, R24C) found only in Sri Lanka and 1 mutation (A1078S) was present only in Malaysia and Sri Lanka, while the other mutation (A222V) is the common delta variant present in many other countries.

Out of the 94 samples that were sequenced from the 3rd week of August 2021, 91 samples had this delta variant [B.1.617.2 (delta)] which was identified from Colombo (CMC and various areas, Hanwella, Kaduwela), Nuwaraeliya (Bogawantalawa, Dikoya, Lindula), Embilipitiya, Matara (Dickwella, ), Gampaha (Ganemulla, Makola, Ragama, Weyangoda), Kegalle, Point Pedro, Puliyakulam and Vaviniya. Only 3 were alpha variant [B.1.1.7 (alpha)] identified from Anuradhapura, Bohawantalaka and Kandawalai. Therefore according to this report the major variant in western province in delta while it’s been rapidly spreading to other areas of Sri Lanka.

The researchers observed that the frequency of the mutated delta appears to increase over the time, suggesting that it could be more transmissible than the original delta (delta without these 4 mutations). However more data is required for the researchers to conclude.

While the vast majority of viruses have been sequenced in the Colombo district, sequencing has been carried out from many areas from all over Sri Lanka. According to the graph (Figure 2) on the timeline of the emergence and displacement of different variants in Sri Lanka the earlier dominant alpha variant has now been displaced by delta variant which has become dominant towards the latter part of August.

Read the PDF of the Sequencing Report 


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