Maharashtra reported the first cases of the subvariants of the Omicron variant of COVID-19, said an official on Saturday. As many as seven people were detected to be infected from the subvariants in Pune, four of which were infected by the B.A. 4 variant while the other three were found to be infected by B.A. 5 variant.
The cases were confirmed after the latest report of the Whole Genomic Sequencing conducted in coordination with the B.J. Medical College Pune. All of the patients have mild symptoms with no need of hospitalisation. They have been kept in home isolation, according to the officials. The earlier first cases of BA.4 and BA.5 subvariants of the Omicron variant of COVID-19 were found in Tamil Nadu and Hyderabad respectively, confirmed the Indian SARS-CoV-2 Genomics Consortium (INSACOG) on Sunday.
All these patients are from Pune city. Of these, 4 are males and 3 are females, of whom, four people are in the age group of more than 50 years and two are in the age group of 20 to 40 years while one is below 10 years of age. Two of these patients have a history of travelling to South Africa, and Belgium, while three have travelled to the Indian states of Kerala and Karnataka. The two patients have no travel history, said the officials.
Notably, all of them except for the minor have received both doses of the COVID vaccines while one is said to have also been jabbed with the precaution dose. "All of them had mild symptoms of covid. No one needs to be hospitalized & treated successfully in-home isolation. B. A. 4 and 5 are of the Omicron sub-lineage, which increases the rate of transmission of the virus to a certain extent according to international experience," said the officials.
BA.4 and BA.5 are subvariants of the Omicron variant circulating globally. These were reported first from South Africa earlier this year and are now reported from several other countries. These variants have not been associated with disease severity or increased hospitalization.