Kathakali Dutta is a second semester student of the Master of Communication and Journalism (Integrated) programme at the School of Mass Communication, KIIT Deemed University, Bhubaneswar.
A medical institute in Kerala has developed an RT-PCR (Reverse Transcription Polymerase Chain Reaction) kit which is reported to have a superior detection rate.
Developed by the Sree Chitra Tirunal Insitute for Medical Sciences and Technology (SCTIMST), the multiplex RT-PCR kit has 97.3 percent sensitivity and 100 percent specificity in COVID-19 detection, as reported by LiveMint.
The new technology which is less likely to show any false positive cases and has a mere 2.7 percent chance of predicting false negative cases has received approval from the Indian Council of Medical Research, country's apex health body monitoring coronavirus situation in the country.
The publication also reported that the kit targets two genes of the SARS-CoV-2 and the human RNAse P which helps in detecting a range of mutant strains. It works on the principle of multiplex Taqman chemistry—amplifying all the three genes in a single reaction.
The procedure takes about 45 minutes excluding the time required for isolation of RNA from the nasopharyngeal swab samples.
In comparison to regular kits which take about five to six hours as turnaround time, the new kit developed by the institute is considerably faster. To provide it to the masses, SCTIMST has signed a memorandum of understanding with Huwel Lifesciences in Hyderabad.
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