Five labs across the country used to perform genome sequencing samples from COVID-19 patients have been closed due to lack of funds, reported NDTV
These labs were part of INSACOG, or the Indian SARS-CoV-2 Genetics Consortium, a network of 38 tasked with genome sequencing have closed because of lack of funds according to NDTV sources.
It caused delays in testing of genome sequencing samples for COVID-19 patients as these labs were identifying new strain of virus like Omicron.
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Genomic sequencing allows scientists to identify SARS-CoV-2 and monitor how it changes over time into new variants, understand how these changes affect the characteristics of the virus, and use this information to better understand how it might impact health.
In short, Genomic sequencing allows health authorities to map coronavirus clusters. Matching the genomic findings of a Covid-19 case to epidemiological information can help authorities track down the source of the virus.
The Rajasthan government was the first state which set up a genome sequencing lab in the SMS hospital of Jaipur.
Madhya Pradesh government had sanctioned funds to the AIIMS to start Genome Sequencing. Madhya Pradesh will have 10 genome sequencing machines in medical colleges.