Coronavirus: IIT Delhi develops low cost Covid-19 test kit, gets ICMR approval

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Updated: Apr 25, 2020 3:51 PM

The test kits have also got the approval of the Indian Council of Medical Research (ICMR), which is the nodal health agency dealing with the Covid-19 outbreak in the country.

The preparation for developing the test kit began by the end of January when no cases of Covid-19 were reported in the country. (Credit:ANI)

In a positive development which could increase large-scale testing of Coronavirus, IIT Delhi has developed a low cost test kit for Covid-19 testing. The test kits have also got the approval of the Indian Council of Medical Research (ICMR), which is the nodal health agency dealing with the Covid-19 outbreak in the country, ANI reported. The preparation for developing the test kit began by the end of January when no cases of Covid-19 were reported in the country.

We developed the test kit within three months as we had begun working on it by the end of January, V Perumal, Professor IIT Delhi was reported as saying by ANI. We wanted to contribute to make testing of Covid-19 affordable which can lead to large scale testing of people, he added.

The test kit developed by a research team from Kusuma School of Biological Sciences (KSBS) at the institute, has been validated with 100 per cent sensitivity and specificity. The development has also made IIT Delhi the first institute to have got the approval from the ICMR for a real-time PCR-based diagnostic assay, IE reported.

After the development of the kit, the institute is looking forward to its large scale production in collaboration with the industrial partners. IIT Delhi director V Ramgopal Rao has estimated that the production of the test kit could be brought down to Rs 300 in the country, IE reported. At present the market cost of Covid-19 test kit is pegged at Rs 4,500.

India has so far reporte more than 24,000 positive cases of Coronavirus with around 775 casualties. Maharashtra, Delhi, Gujarat and Madhya Pradesh are some of the worst affected states in the country. The government has said that the lockdown imposed by the government has been able to isolate the virus and restricted its spread among the population in the country.

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