Kerala government institute Sree Chitra Tirunal Institute for Medical Sciences and Technology has developed a diagnostic test kit that can deliver coronavirus pandemic testing results in just two hours at a low cost of Rs 1,000.
The test called Chitra GeneLAMP-N uses the reverse transcriptase loop-mediated amplification of viral nucleic acid (RT-LAMP) for testing, according to hospital authorities.
The Indian Council of Medical Research (ICMR) has given preliminary clearance to the new test kit.
It can take a total of 30 samples in a single batch in a single machine allowing a large number of samples to be tested each day.
Currently, India is using Reverse Transcription Polymerase Chain Reaction (RT-PCR) test for SARS-CoV-2 virus or Corona virus. The time taken for a laboratory to collect the swab sample till the final result is over 5 hours now. RT-PCR is an expensive test as the machines required are imported and expensive. In private laboratories, the test costs Rs 4,500.
The kit was developed by a team at SCTIMST headed by senior scientist in the Biomedical Technology Dr Anoop Thekkuveettil.