The Delta variant (B.1.617.2) of SARS-CoV-2 was first detected in India in October 2020, and has been classified by the World Health Organization (WHO) as a variant of concern.
The Delta variant of the coronavirus has mutated into a version that could possibly be resistant to monoclonal antibodies cocktail used in COVID-19 treatment, The Times of India has reported.
The Delta variant (B.1.617.2) of SARS-CoV-2 was first detected in India in October 2020 and has been classified by the World Health Organization (WHO) as a variant of concern.
Public Health England (PHE), a UK government body, said India has reported six cases of Delta-AY.1 as of June 7. Delta-AY.1 has acquired the spike protein mutation K417N, the report said citing information from GISAID.
"As of 7 June 2021, 63 genomes of Delta with K417N have been identified on GISAID. from Canada (1) Germany (1), Russia (1), Nepal (2), Switzerland (4), India (6), Poland (9), Portugal (12), Japan (13), USA (14)," PHE said on June 11 in its updated document on coronavirus variants.
There are currently 36 cases of Delta-AY.1 in England, the document added.
Also read: In-Depth | Decoding the Delta variant of coronavirus and growing concerns around it
The K417N mutation is also one of the mutations found in the Beta variant (B.1.351) of SAR-CoV-2, which was first detected in South Africa.
The Times of India report pointed to tweets by Dr Vinod Scaria, clinician and computational biologist, Institute of Genomics and Integrative Biology (IGIB), New Delhi.
In a Twitter thread, Dr. Scaria gave some insight into the emerging lineages of Delta variant of the coronavirus.
"A number of genomes are now available for the lineage AY.1 / B.1.617.2.1 from across the world. The sequences are mostly from Europe, Asia and America. The travel histories are not readily available to make assumptions," he said.
"One important point to consider regarding K417N is evidence suggesting resistance to mAbs Casirivimab and Imdevimab. The mAb cocktail incidentally has received a EUA from @CDSCO_INDIA_INF in India. The variant freq for K417N is not much in India at this point in time," Dr Scaria tweeted.