ICMR approves “COVIRAP” test developed by IIT Kharagpur

The Indian Council of Medical Research recently approved the covid-19 test called COVIRAP. It is a Diagnostic machine that was developed by the Indian Institute of Technology Kharagpur. This kit gives close test results as produced by RT-PCR.

Key highlights

COVIRAP is user friendly and is of low cost. It determines the results in less than an hour. It does not require air conditioned laboratory and thus can be set up even in the middle of a field.

About COVIRAP kit

The testing kit consists of three mixtures that confirm the presence of the virus. In this testing method, after the sample is inserted into the kit, it is mixed with master mixers and heated to a certain temperature. This phase of testing is quite common to that of the other tests.

The novelty in the test is that, the sample is heated again for the second time. This is exclusive and unique and not found in other COVID-19 tests. This process has been patented.

After heating the samples are put on a strip. This strip produces lines that reveals if a patient is covid-19 positive or negative. These strips are then inserted into a cartridge from where an application uses the camera to determine whether the test is positive or negative. The test results are displayed in a screen.

Features of the kit

The specificity and sensitivity are the two major factors that the Indian Council of Medical Research looks for in every COVID-19 test during the approval process. This test is 93% sensitive and 98% specific. The cost of the kit is around 5000 rupees. The cost to conduct a single test using the kit is around 500 to 600 rupees.

The most special feature of the kit is that none of the components were imported.

Way forward

The institute is ready to transfer the technology to any of the private firms or startups approaching.

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