Some 93% of Covid-19 patients in July this year were infected with the Delta variant of the coronavirus, finds a new study conducted jointly by Chittagong Veterinary and Animal Sciences University (CVASU) and the Bangladesh Council of Science and Industry Research (BCSIR).
The study was conducted collecting nasopharyngeal swab samples of 30 Covid-19 patients infected between 1 July and 19 July by.
CVASU revealed the findings of the study on Friday.
Gautam Buddha Das, supervisor of the genome sequencing research project Supervisor and the vice chancellor of the university, shared the information with The Business Standard.
From 1 July to 19 July, samples were collected from 15 people in Chattogram city and 15 people from different upazilas of the district. Of them, 12 were men and 16 were women, and their nasal swab samples were sent to BCSIR.
The genome sequencing of the specimens was uncovered under the supervision of two BCSIR researchers, Md Selim Khan and Dr Md Morshed Hasan Sarkar.
The results of the genome sequence showed that of the 30 samples, 28 or 93% were infected with the Delta variant.
Of these 28, 14 are residents of the city and 14 are from various upazilas. Of the other two, one was infected with the UK's Alpha variant and another was infected by the Wuhan China variant.
The study found that 15 of the 30 patients who provided samples were admitted to different hospitals for treatment.
Delta variant spread from people who went to India for treatment
Prof Gautam Buddha Das said, "The highly contagious Indian Delta variant of the coronavirus has spread equally in the urban and rural areas of Chattogram."
The Delta variant is generally 40 times more contagious than the other variants, he said. He added that since there is no border with India near Chattogram, it is believed that this variant has quietly spread in the district from people who went to India for treatment.
The variant might also have spread in Chattogram from people who travel to different parts of the country for port and other business purposes, he said.
The genome sequence data of the 30 samples that were tested have been submitted to the Global Initiative on Sharing All Influenza Data (GISAID), he continued.
The team of researchers who conducted the study financed by the Poultry Research and Training Centre (PRTC) and supervised by the CVASU vice-chancellor, included Professor Paritosh Kumar Biswas, Professor Sharmin Chowdhury, Dr Iftekhar Ahmed Rana, Dr Bridip Das, Dr Pranesh Dutt, Dr Md Sirajul Islam, and Dr Tanvir Ahmad Nizami.