As part of a national project, researchers in India are sequencing SARS-CoV-2 samples isolated from patients in different parts of the country to study the virus's spread, LiveMint reports.
The project, it adds, is being led by the National Center for Disease Control and includes researchers from the Center for Cellular and Molecular Biology in Hyderabad and the Institute of Genomics and Integrative Biology in New Delhi. They plan to generate sequences for 400 to 500 viral samples in India to trace the virus's movements but also keep a watch out for any changes that might portend the emergence of new strains.
Rakesh Mishra, the director of CSIR-CCMB, tells the Hindu that his institute has sequenced about five viral isolates from the Hyderabad area and is able to sequence about 40 samples in three to four days. "We should be sequencing the virus from across the country to get a picture of the diversity of the virus, if there is any," he adds at the Hindu.
Additionally, LiveMint says the work could inform efforts to develop treatments and vaccines.