Panicking Is Not The Best Response, India’s Top Genome Sequencing Expert On Omicron

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Top genome sequencing expert: According to the World Health Organization, the Omicron coronavirus variant is causing more countries to close their borders yet again as risk of infection surges. The fear of Omicron coronavirus variant spreading has gripped India also.

According to Dr Anurag Agrawal, the country’s top genome sequencing expert, panicking won’t solve the issue. Agarwal said, “Any study concluding that Omicron is six times more transmissible than Delta variant is bad science.” He said that we need to give a reasonable response rather than going into a full-blown panic mode.

He was against the idea of shutting down of flights, especially for countries where the scare isn’t much.

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“We know that the omicron variant is heavily mutated. All major sites where antibodies are expected to bind show mutation. Existing immunity is greatly reduced when protecting against Omicron. However, using graphs to denote transmissibility Of Omicron is bad science.” the doctor added.

He also said that no deaths have been reported so far in any of the 194 member nations that fall under the ambit of WHO. “The overall global risk related to the new variant of concern Omicron is assessed as very high”, he said as per a report.

Another expert from South Africa said that it is too early to say whether symptoms of this variant were more severe than previous variants. However, it seems to be more transmissible.

The World Health Organisation (WHO) is still trying to analyse  the working of the new coronavirus strain and the impact it has on the existing vaccination doses. The organisation in its statement emphasised that vaccines remain important to reduce “severe disease and death”. This includes the fight against the Delta variant and also against the new one. Read more about it here.

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