Preprint Brief Report Version 1 Preserved in Portico This version is not peer-reviewed

The Frequency of G614 SARS-CoV-2 Variant in India

Version 1 : Received: 4 August 2020 / Approved: 6 August 2020 / Online: 6 August 2020 (10:12:00 CEST)

How to cite: Bassa, B.; Uppu, R. The Frequency of G614 SARS-CoV-2 Variant in India. Preprints 2020, 2020080148 (doi: 10.20944/preprints202008.0148.v1). Bassa, B.; Uppu, R. The Frequency of G614 SARS-CoV-2 Variant in India. Preprints 2020, 2020080148 (doi: 10.20944/preprints202008.0148.v1).

Abstract

As reported by us and others previously (1, 2), the D614G mutation appeared in the spike glycoprotein (SPG) of the SARS-CoV-2 (the pathogen behind COVID-19) at the early stages of the pandemic and then G614 containing variant of SARS-CoV-2 became the predominant strain in most human populations across the world. However, one of the most recent reports from India (3) stated the incidence of G614 to be only 26% in the Indian population. This report is contradictory to the information available through the GenBank (4) SARS-CoV-2 sequence deposits made by various laboratories from India. The above stated report currently circulating in the Indian media is likely to create a public perception that the Indian strain is less contagious and such a notion could be harmful to people’s welfare. In view of this concern we have re-evaluated, updated and recalculated the incidence of the G614 variant in the Indian population by analyzing 395 Indian SARS-CoV-2 genomic sequences available in the GenBank as of June 26, 2020. In our analysis we have categorized the samples by the month in which the samples were collected. We have used an alignment-free software tool named Compare (5, 6), and the Basic Local Alignment Search Tool (BLAST) (7) in the present analysis. We finally inspected each of the 395 sequences physically for the presence of aspartic acid (D) or glycine (G) at the 614th position of the spike glycoprotein. We analyzed an Australian cohort in parallel for comparison. We have found that the prevalence of G614 variant in the Indian samples for the month of June 2020 is 90.6%. The trends are similar with the Australian samples.

Subject Areas

Alignment-free software tool; Coronavirus; COVID-19; D614G mutation; Sarbecovirus; SARS-CoV; SARS-CoV-2; Spike glycoprotein

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