ICMR approves CCMB’s dry swab RNA- extraction-free Covid-19 testing method

By: |
November 27, 2020 7:28 PM

To avoid leakage, they are packed heavily that adds on to sample processing times at both the sample collection and testing centres.

CCMB researchers found that VTM can be totally avoided and dry swab technique also does not require RNA extraction and can be directly used for RT-PCR testing with sensitivity and specificity similar to the current gold standard.CCMB researchers found that VTM can be totally avoided and dry swab technique also does not require RNA extraction and can be directly used for RT-PCR testing with sensitivity and specificity similar to the current gold standard.

The Indian Council of Medical Research has approved a dry swab RNA- extraction-free testing method for the COVID-19 virus developed by CSIR-Centre for Cellular and Molecular Biology, CCMB said here on Friday. Ribonucleic acid (RNA) is an important macromolecule that is present in all biological cells. In the conventional testing method, nasopharyngeal or oropharyngeal swab samples collected by sample collection centres are transported to testing centres, sometimes even hundreds of kilometres away. The samples are generally placed in a liquid called Viral Transport Medium (VTM).

To avoid leakage, they are packed heavily that adds on to sample processing times at both the sample collection and testing centres. Despite this, there are leakages from samples, which render those batches untestable and unsafe in handling. CCMB researchers found that VTM can be totally avoided and dry swab technique also does not require RNA extraction and can be directly used for RT-PCR testing with sensitivity and specificity similar to the current gold standard.

This method has now received ICMR approval for use in settings where automated RNA extraction is not available, the city based premier research institute said in a release. Rakesh Mishra, Director, CCMB said RNA extraction, even with automation, takes four hours for roughly 500 samples. VTM and RNA extraction both add a significant burden on money and time required for mass testing for coronavirus.

“We believe the technique’s merit holds for all kinds of settings and has the potential of bringing down the costs and time of testing by 40-50 per cent. It is a game changing technology as with the existing infrastructure, the throughput of COVID-19 screening can be enhanced several fold with immediate effect while, at the same time, making the whole process safer,” Mishra said.

Get live Stock Prices from BSE, NSE, US Market and latest NAV, portfolio of Mutual Funds, Check out latest IPO News, Best Performing IPOs, calculate your tax by Income Tax Calculator, know market’s Top Gainers, Top Losers & Best Equity Funds. Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Financial Express is now on Telegram. Click here to join our channel and stay updated with the latest Biz news and updates.

Next Stories
1Total 7.86 lakh healthcare workers got COVID-19 vaccine jabs till Wednesday 6 pm: Centre
2China records dozens new coronavirus cases, defends response
3Bird flue: Over 1,200 bird deaths reported in Delhi since January 6, say officials