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A new strain of coronavirus named 'Clade A3i' is spreading in Tamil Nadu.

Scientists have identified a new dominant strain of coronavirus called 'Clade A3i', found in most samples from Tamil Nadu and Telangana.

Scientists at Hyderabad's Centre for Cellular and Molecular Biology(CCMB) discovered a new strain of coronavirus in India. The dominant coronavirus clade in India currently is the A2a. Out of the 361 genomes analyzed by CCMB, 45 percent were A2a. The newly identified strain which scientists christened as A3i, comprises 41 percent of the genomes analyzed in India, and 3.5 percent of those analyzed globally. With this new clade, there are 11 SARS-CoV-2 types identified globally, with at least six of them identified in India.

The study said, this strain, which seems to have originated from an outbreak in February 2020, has been found in the highest proportions in Tamil Nadu and Telangana. However, the paper is yet to be reviewed, and scientists are in the process of gathering more data on whether this clade is more virulent than the other strains of coronaviruses.

The COVID-19 pandemic has given rise to a lot of potentially dangerous misinformation. For reliable advice on COVID-19 including symptoms, prevention and available treatment, please refer to the World Health Organisation or your national healthcare authority.

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