With scientists and staff getting infected with COVID-19 cases at the Institute of Life Sciences (ILS)- Bhubaneswar, the genome sequencing of samples for Omicron variant detection has virtually come to a grinding halt for more than a week.
The State had last reported Omicron variant cases on 19 January with the ILS providing diagnostic reports of 145 new variant cases to the State health department. No information on further detection of Omicron positive cases has been received for the past 9 days.
We have been told that genome sequencing of samples has been affected due to the Covid surge in ILS-Bhubaneswar, said a senior health department official on Friday.
The Institute of Life Sciences (ILS) Bhubaneswar, an autonomous Institute of the Department of Biotechnology of the union government, is authorized for conducting genome sequencing of samples collected from four states—Odisha, Chhattisgarh, Jharkhand, and Bihar. The premier research institute has so far detected 347 Omicron variant cases in the State after the genome sequencing of the samples.