As instances spike, ICMR desires producers to make antigen kits; only one authorised to this point | India Information

BENGALURU: As India is lifting lockdowns in varied components of the nation in a phased method, it’s anticipated to see an additional upsurge in Covid-19 instances attributable to elevated transmission of SARS-CoV-2 virus, calling for enhanced testing capabilities.
In view of this, the Indian Council For Medical Analysis (ICMR), whereas arguing that it’s essential to scale up testing capability to the utmost doable ranges, has invited producers to make fast antigen kits which can be reasonably priced and supply fast outcomes.
Karnataka too, after having used these kits within the Ballari cluster, is seeking to procure the identical because it ramps up testing capabilities amid rising variety of instances. Consultants have already suggested the federal government to introduce these kits.
In a gathering final Friday, chief minister BS Yediyurappa was suggested that fast antigen take a look at be carried out for BMTC, KSRTC, ASHA, anganwadi and well being employees, police personnel, railway workers, supply boys, auto and cab drivers amongst others.
“The gold commonplace RT-PCR diagnostic take a look at for Covid-19 has limitations when it comes to widespread availability. In view of this, there may be pressing requirement of dependable and handy fast level of care antigen detection assays with excessive sensitivity and specificity. Such assays could possibly be used as potential diagnostic checks in all doable private and non-private healthcare settings and made out there for mass testing,” the ICMR stated.
To date, the council has validated and authorised just one fast antigen detection assay from SD Biosensor, a agency that has branches in Gurugram, China and Korea. “…ICMR invitations purposes for validation of fast antigen detection checks for Covid-19 from all producers who’ve developed such a take a look at,” a notification learn.
Dr V Ravi, a virologist at Nimhans and member, Karnataka Covid technical committee, defined: “Not like antibody kits, which measure a physique’s response to the virus and will not be diagnostic, antigen checks will inform us if an individual is constructive or not. RT-PCR, for instance, detects the virus’ genetic materials, the antigen checks detect the virus’ protein. Within the case of SARS-CoV-2, it might be the S-protein.”
He stated that antigen checks have an accuracy of 50% to 80% of RT-PCR constructive samples, which implies that if a take a look at comes constructive on the antigen kits, there can be no want for an RT-PCR take a look at, however in case it exhibits damaging, the pattern should be re-confirmed by way of an RT-PCR take a look at.
“It’s a quite simple take a look at that wants no refined labs or educated personnel. You accumulate the samples and place it on a strip — like a being pregnant equipment — and watch for the road. In about 20 minutes, it’ll let you know whether it is constructive or not,” Ravi added.
He stated that whereas there’s a big demand for antigen kits, the truth that there’s just one authorised agency might delay procurement. “However it’s good that ICMR has invited different corporations to additionally get their kits validated,” Ravi stated.

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