Published: 20th May 2021
What the FAQ: What is the new ViraGen testing kit for COVID and how does it work?
All you need to know about Cipla's new COVID-19 testing kit and its impact and how it might make testing easier
As India grapples with the devastating second wave of COVID-19, every effort to reduce the burden on the hospitals and frontline workers counts. With a severe shortage of hospital beds, oxygen cylinders and drugs, the new ViraGen real-time testing kit is no doubt, a welcome innovation. We take a look at how the kit works and how one can access it.
What is the ViraGen testing kit?
ViraGen is a real-time testing kit that uses polymerase chain reaction (COVID-19 RT-PCR). Pharma giant Cipla, who manufactured it along with Ubio Biotechnology Systems Pvt Ltd recently announced its commercialisation. The kit can be used to detect the presence of SARS Cov-2 virus with a sensitivity of 98.6 per cent. It has been approved by the Indian Council of Medical Research.
How does it work?
It works on multiplex PCR technology. This technology is basically the use of polymerase chain reaction to amplify multiple DNA sequences simultaneously.The test can detect nucleic acid from SARS-CoV-2 in the upper and lower respiratory specimens of patients with suspected COVID-19.
When will the kits be available?
Cipla will begin marketing and distributing it from May 25.
How will it help?
The kit will help address the capacity issues of current testing services and reduce the burden on healthcare professionals.