Revolutionizing the Covid Test capacity in the country, the scientists of IIT Delhi have come up with a Rapid Antigen Test Kit, which is being developed by using the internal resources of the premier institute. The kit which is approved by ICMR is priced at Rs 50 and provides results within 5 minutes.
In the fight against the pandemic, IIT Delhi had in July 2020 launched RT PCR kit which was priced at Rs. 399. Since then, over 8 Million PPE kits have been supplied so far by the institute and with the indigenous technology, IIT Delhi could bring the pricing of the RT PCR tests to the current level. With the launch of this Antigen based rapid test kit diagnostics will become easy and affordable for the rural areas.
The Rapid Antigen Test kit has been developed by the IIT Delhi researchers led by Professor Harpal Singh and his team from the Centre for Biomedical Engineering.
Salient Features of the Technology
Among various features of the kit, Prof. Harpal Singh mentions that this kit is used for in vitro qualitative detection of SARS-CoV-2 antigen. Certified by ICMR, the kit is suitable for the general population and diagnosis of Covid-19 as the test kit is a colloidal gold enhanced double antibody sandwich immunoassay for the qualitative determination of SARS-CoV-2 antigen in human nasal swabs, throat swabs, and deep sputum samples.
The experts suggest that the results obtained are qualitative, which means the results can be inferred visually with the naked eye. In the test region, a SARS-CoV-2 positive specimen produces a distinct color band which is formed by the specific antibody-antigen colored conjugate complex. The absence of this colored band in the test region suggests a negative result against Covid-19.
Experts claim that this test is found to be suitable for initial Ct values (Ct values between 14 to 32) with 90% sensitivity, 100% specificity, and 98.99% accuracy.
Indigenously developed Rapid Antigen Test Kit
While launching the test kit, Union Minister Sanjay Dhotre expressed gratitude towards IIT Delhi for facilitating the nation in becoming Atmanirbhar in fighting against the pandemic. It is worth noting that all the products used in making the test kit are made-in-India products.