ICMR begins second phase of Covid-19 sero survey to count those already infected
The results of the sero-survey to know the prevalence of antibodies against coronavirus among the populace are likely by September-end
The Indian Council of Medical Research (ICMR) has started the second phase of Covid-19 sero survey to ascertain the number of people infected with the virus since the first round was conducted in May amidst the nationwide lockdown, says a report by Hindustan Times.
The first round of sero survey organised by ICMR along with National Centre for Disease Control, state health departments and the World Health Organisation (WHO) had shown pan-India coronavirus spread at 0.73%, the publication reports.
It further says that approximately 24,000 samples will be taken and tested from the same 69 districts in 21 states that were included in the first sero survey. The sampling has already started; many states completed sample collection processes while the others are underway to finish it.
"We have from ICMR embarked on the second national serosurvey, and it is also a work in progress, and should be completed, hopefully, by the first week of September...Most of the sero surveys are looking at antibodies, and other details like neutralizing antibodies, T-cell responses etc. are not being studied in these large sero surveys," Hindustan Times quoted ICMR director general Balram Bhargava as saying.
The blood samples for the second phase of sero survey will be tested for the prevalence of Immunoglobulin (IgG) antibodies against novel coronavirus.
As per the report, an official said, "This Phase II sero survey is a follow up of the first survey, and the process is a repeat of what was done in May when movement of people was restricted. We have to see how much difference has lifting of lockdown made to the disease prevalence in the country. Same areas/clusters will be covered this time also, but samples will be lifted of different people."