• It is being done to map the mutations emerging in SARS-Cov-2 strain (virus that causes COVID-19) in the country.
• Ministry of Health and Family Welfare has also established Indian Sars-CoV-2 Genomics Consortium (INSACOG) for laboratory and epidemiological surveillance of circulating strains of SARS-CoV-2.
• Also, Centre has identified 10 advanced regional laboratories to serve as regional hub laboratories for genome sequencing.
• Genome is an organism’s complete set of DNAs, including all of its genes. Each genome contains all of the information needed to build and maintain that organism.
• Whole genome sequencing (WGS) is figuring out the order of DNA nucleotides, or bases, in a genome-order of As, Cs, Gs, and Ts that make up an organism’s DNA.
• The human genome is made up of over 3 billion of these genetic letters.
WGS helps in:
• Identifying genomic causes of rare disease, understanding variation in complex disease.
• Improving the understanding of how virus spreads and evolves.
• Identifying genetic mutations and how these mutations impact gene functions.
Mains Paper 3: Science and Tech
Prelims level: Whole genome sequencing
Mains level: Significance of the whole genome sequencing