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Lucknow-based SGPGI Develops RNA-based Fast & Affordable Testing Kit to Bolster India's Fight Against Covid-19

Image for representation. (Reuters)

Image for representation. (Reuters)

The kit, which has been developed by the Department of Molecular Medicine and Biotechnology of the institute, would cost around Rs 150, as claimed by the doctors at the SGPGI.

At a time when cases of novel coronavirus in India are moving towards to touch 2 lakh-mark, the Lucknow-based Sanjay Gandhi Post Graduate Institute of Medical Sciences (SGPGI) has claimed to have developed a rapid and affordable testing kit for Covid-19, which is RNA-based and can detect the infection in humans in just 30-minute.

The kit, which has been developed by the Department of Molecular Medicine and Biotechnology of the institute, would cost around Rs 150, as claimed by the doctors at the SGPGI.

“The Molecular Medicine and Biotechnology Department of the SGPGI has developed a testing technology for active Covid-19 infection and the costs of it is also expected to be much lower than that the existing ones. The team which has come up with this testing technology was headed by HoD of the same department, Dr Swasti Tiwari,” said SGPGI Director, Dr Radha Krishna Dheeman.

The varsity's director explained that the testing technology is based on a single tube testing in laboratory, which will detect "accurate and fast results".

“The testing technology developed by our doctors is based on a single tube laboratory test which is not just accurate but also fast and gives the results in around 30 minutes. Moreover, no sophisticated instrumentation is required for the interpretation of the results," he claimed.

Speaking on the same, Dr Swasti Tiwari, who was leading the team which come up with this affordable testing kit idea, voiced hope that the Indian Council of Medical Research (ICMR) will soon give it approval to carry out testing for Covid-19. “We are already in a process to test human samples using this technology. However, this technology can only be made available for commercial use through proper channel. We are also hopeful that ICMR will soon give approval for public usage of this technology,” he said.

Meanwhile, as per sources, several companies have also expressed their desire for marketing this affordable Covid-19 testing kit across the globe.