Indian Scientists Isolate COVID-19 Virus Strain That’s A 99.98% Match As 10 Patients Recover

Off late, we’ve been reading disheartening news stories about the steadily rising COVID-19 cases and fatalities across the country. Two casualties have been reported as well as a case of a woman leaving her isolation ward without informing her doctors. However, there have been some reassuring developments as well.

According to Financial Express, out of the 83 confirmed coronavirus patients, 10 have successfully recovered (3 in Kerala and 7 admitted at Safdarjung Hospital in Delhi).

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Several sporting events have been cancelled or postponed; schools, colleges and cinema halls have been shut down to prevent the disease from spreading. Hindustan Times reports that Tihar Jail inmates have been educated about the basic precautions against the virus. Officials are keeping a check on inmates’ health, screening new ones and keeping them in separate wards for 3 days.

According to Zee News, Pune’s National Institute of Virology (NIV) has isolated a virus that has a 99.98% match with the one originating in Wuhan making us the fifth nation to do so after China, the US, Thailand, and Japan.

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Raman R Gangakhedkar, head of Epidemiology and Communicable Diseases-I (ECD-I), Division of ICMR was quoted explaining,

“Coronavirus is difficult to isolate. But the efforts of scientists of NIV Pune have been successful and about 11 isolates of coronavirus are available which is a prime requisite for doing any kind of research related to viruses. Even with expedited clinical trials and approvals, it will take not less than around one-and-a-half to two years to develop a vaccine.”

Researchers from Sunnybrook, the University of Toronto, have also isolated the SARS-CoV-2 virus, reports The Star. We hope that in the coming weeks, the coronavirus pandemic is effectively contained.

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