Variant B.1.617 has caused an increase in Covid-19 cases in the last 2 months
Daily NEWS Summary | 04-06-2021; The increase in Covid-19 cases in the country during the last two months shows a correlation with the increase in variant B.1.617 of SARS-CoV-2, according to INSACOG, a group of 10 national laboratories.
- The months of April and May saw a second deadly wave of coronavirus cases in the country, pushing the health infrastructure to the limit.
- According to INSACOG, the B.1.1.7 lineage of the virus, which was first identified in the UK, is declining in proportion across India over the past month and a half.
- The variant B.1.1.7 of the coronavirus has been named “Alpha“.
- SARS CoV-2 line B.1.617 was first reported in Maharashtra, but is now seen in other states such as West Bengal, Andhra Pradesh, Delhi, Gujarat, and Telangana.
- “The current increase in cases seen in the last two months in some states shows a correlation with the increase in the SARS CoV-2 line B.1.617,” said India’s SARS-CoV-2 Genomics Consortium (INSACOG).
- Line B.1.617 evolved into three sublines: B.1.617.1, B.1.617.2 and B.1.617.3.
- Early data show that B.1.617.2, nicknamed Delta by the WHO, has greater transmission advantages than the other two sublineages.
- B.1.617, originally called a double mutant, exhibits three new peak protein mutations.
- Two mutations, E484Q and L452R, are in the area of importance for antibody-based neutralization.
- The third mutation, P681R in B.1.617, as well as the reversion of E484Q allow its subline to be more infectious.
- The World Health Organization (WHO) has called it a “variant of concern.”
- Sublines B.1.617.1 and B.1.617.3 have two mutations in the receptor-binding domain: L452R and E484Q.
- The first has seven maximum mutations, while the second has seven to eight.
- In the case of B.1.617.3, it has nine to 10 spike mutations and two mutations in the receptor-binding domain: L452R and T478K.
- In the case of all three sublineages, the mutations have the potential to reduce antibody efficacy and neutralization by vaccine sera, which, however, has yet to be established.
A panel will decide the evaluation criteria for CBSE Class 12 in 10 days.
Daily NEWS Summary | 04-06-2021; The Central Board for Secondary Education (CBSE) established a 13-member committee on Friday to develop objective criteria for evaluating students in class 12 after their exams were canceled. The panel will send its report within 10 days.
“Given the uncertain conditions due to Covid-19 and the feedback obtained from various stakeholders, it has been decided that the CBSE Class 12 Board exams will not take place this year. It was also decided that the CBSE will take steps to compile the results according to well-defined objective criteria within a limited period of time, ”said CBSE exam controller Sanyam Bhardwaj.
- “A 13-member committee has been created for this purpose. The panel will present its report within 10 days, ”he added.
- On Tuesday, the government canceled the CBSE Class 12 Board exams amid the ongoing Covid-19 pandemic across the country.
Childhood immunization is not a priority from WHO’s perspective: vaccine expert
Daily NEWS Summary | 04-06-2021; The World Health Organization (WHO) leading vaccine expert said immunizing children against the coronavirus “is not a high priority” given the extremely limited supply of vaccines in the world.
- Dr. Kate O’Brien says vaccinating children “is not a priority from the WHO perspective” even as a growing number of wealthy countries authorize their Covid-19 vaccines for adolescents and children.
- Dr. O’Brien says that since children are generally not at risk of becoming seriously ill or dying from Covid-19, vaccinating them during the pandemic is primarily aimed at stopping transmission, rather than protecting them from the disease.
- Canada, the United States, and the European Union have recently approved certain Covid-19 vaccines for children ages 12-15 as they approach their adult vaccination goals.
- WHO Director General Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus previously urged rich countries to donate their Covid-19 vaccines to poor countries instead of vaccinating their adolescents and children.
- Less than 1% of the Covid-19 vaccines administered worldwide have been used in poor countries.
- Dr. O’Brien says that children do not need to be vaccinated before sending them back to school if the adults in contact with them have been vaccinated.
No decision yet made on compensation for vaccine manufacturers: government
Daily NEWS Summary | 04-06-2021; Union government was still in negotiations and no final decision had been taken on compensation for local or foreign Covid-19 vaccine manufacturers, NITI Aayog (health) member Dr VK Paul said during a ‘a press conference by the Ministry of Health on Friday.
- India had surpassed the United States in providing at least one dose of vaccine, he said, adding: “On Thursday evening India administered doses of 17.2 crore, while the United States administered doses of 16.9 crore. “
- While the government’s priority was to provide vaccine coverage to the vulnerable elderly population and those with co-morbidities, Bharat Biotech and Zydus have already started testing vaccines in children.
- “But you have to understand that we will need doses between 25 and 26 million rupees to cover this population, because we cannot have partial coverage. All of this will be taken into account when developing the strategy. The collection and analysis of information on the issue is ongoing, ”he said.
- Dr Paul warned that at a time when the second wave appears to be abating, the virus could return in case people do not act responsibly.
- “When the peak decreases, we must not suddenly return to the same behavior as before the second wave. We need to buy time to achieve high immunization coverage, ”he said.
- Lav Aggarwal, deputy secretary of the Ministry of Health, providing details on the Covid-19 chart in the country, said there had been a continuing decline in cases and recoveries far exceeded new cases.
- “Recoveries exceed daily reported cases. There has been a steady decline in the positivity of cases across the country. India has seen a steady decline in the number of cases since its peak on May 7. If we analyze the data against May 7, the highest peak reported, we see a 68% drop in daily cases, ”he said.
EU opens antitrust investigation against Facebook
Daily NEWS Summary | 04-06-2021; British and European regulators on Friday opened a dual antitrust investigation on Facebook to determine whether the company is distorting competition in the classifieds market using data it collects from competing services.
- The EU executive board said it is also examining whether Facebook’s way of integrating its own classifieds service, Marketplace, into the social network gives it an advantage in reaching customers, in violation of EU competition rules.
- UK competition watchdog said in a simultaneous announcement that it had launched its own investigation to examine whether Facebook’s collection and use of data gave it an unfair advantage over competitors providing classified data and online dating services.
- “Facebook collects vast amounts of data on the activities of its social media users and beyond, which allows it to target specific customer groups,” said Margrethe Vestager, European Commission executive vice president in charge. competition policy.
- He added “We will take a closer look at whether this data gives Facebook an unfair competitive advantage, particularly in the online classifieds industry.”
- The investigation is the latest salvo from European regulators trying to curb the domination of big tech companies.
Make in India project authorized for submarines
Daily NEWS Summary | 04-06-2021; The Defense Procurement Council, headed by Defense Minister Rajnath Singh, has approved a Rs 43 billion “Make in India” project to build six conventional submarines, the government said in a statement today.
- The Defense Acquisition Board (DAC), headed by Defense Minister Rajnath Singh, on Friday approved the publication of a Request for Proposal (RFP) for the construction of six conventional submarines under the project -75I for an estimated cost of 43,000 crore.
- At a meeting, the DAC also approved the acquisition of air defense weapons and ammunition for the military at a cost of around ₹ 6,000 crore.
- “This is a historic approval, being the first case treated under the Strategic Association (SP) model.
- It would be one of the biggest ‘Make in India’ projects and will create a tiered industrial ecosystem for submarine building in India, ”Singh said on Twitter of the submarine deal.
- With this approval, India could carry out its government-envisioned 30-year submarine construction program to acquire national competence in their construction and for the Indian industry to design and build them independently, he said.
- The deal would take at least two to three years to complete, and given high technology and long lead times, the cost would be spread over many years, a defense official said.
Daily NEWS Summary | 04-06-2021; The number of reported coronavirus cases in India was 2, 86, 55,422 at the time of this bulletin, with the death toll at 3, 42,229.
- Monetary Policy Committee (MPC) of the Reserve Bank of India (RBI), after assessing the evolution of macroeconomic and financial conditions, as well as the impact of the second wave of the pandemic on Friday, unanimously voted to maintain the status quo, keeping the key rate unchanged at 4%.
- DCGI has authorized the Serum Institute of India (SII) to manufacture the Sputnik COVID-19 vaccine in India for review, testing and analysis under certain conditions, official sources said on Friday.
- “DCGI has authorized the Serum Institute to manufacture the Sputnik COVID-19 vaccine in India for examination, testing and analysis at its approved Hadapsar facility under certain conditions,” said an official source.