Low Cost Covid-19 Diagnostic Kits developed by IIT Guwahati
In association with the Guwahati Medical College and Hospital (GMCH) and RR Animal Healthcare Limited, at the Indian Institute of Technology (IIT) Guwahati, kits for diagnosing Covid-19 has been developed by using material that is available in the local market. 3 different types of diagnosis low-cost kits have been developed, they are Ribonucleic acid (RNA) isolation kits, Viral Transport Media (VTM) kits, Real-Time Polymerase Chain Reaction (RT-PCR) test kits. The materials used for manufacturing the kits are as per the recommendations of the World Health Organisation (WHO).
Two batches of the Kits have been handed over to GMCH and the National Health Mission, Assam at present.
These Kits are used to collect the sample safely to the laboratory for testing. The VTM Kit must keep the sample specimen intact if any virus is present in the sample until the testing procedure for it can be completed in a laboratory, hence the quality of the VTM Kit is important for accurate results.
The VTM Kit developed at IIT Guwahati is said to preserve the viability of viruses at refrigerated temperature for up to 72 hours.
This VTM Kit of IIT Guwahati can be used to collect both oral and as well as nasal sample specimens. The Centre for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has validated the VTM Kits as safe to use.
A complementary Deoxyribonucleic Acid (DNA) is generated in this type of Kit, an enzyme Reverse Transcriptase (RT) is used to generate the DNA from an isolated and purified RNA. This converted and newly formed DNA is then used to check the presence of the Covid-19 virus in the sample specimen.