A female doctor in Assam could be the country’s first case of a Covid-19 patient infected with two different variants of the virus at the same time, said Dr B Borkakoty, senior scientist at the Regional Medical Research Center (RMRC) of the ICMR in Dibrugarh, said.
The doctor, despite being fully vaccinated, was infected with the Alpha and Delta variants of SARS-CoV-2, and the RMRC lab detected the double infection in the patient in May.
There have been few such cases in the UK, Brazil and Portugal, but such a case has yet to be reported in India, Dr Borkakoty said.
A month after receiving the second dose, the woman and her husband, both doctors in a Covid care center, tested positive for Covid-19 and the latter was infected with the Alpha variant.
“We collected their samples again and the second round of testing confirmed the double infection in her again. We also did the whole genome sequencing and that allowed us to make sure that this was a case of infection with both variants at the same time, ”said Dr Borkakoty.
The woman who had a mild sore throat, body aches and insomnia recovered without hospitalization, he added.
“Double infection occurs when two variants infect a person simultaneously or within a very short time,” said Dr Borkakoty.