Feluda COVID-19 Paper Strip Test Kits to be Launched in Delhi Today Amid Surge in Coronavirus Numbers

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New Delhi, November 19: Feluda coronavirus paper strip testing kits will be launched in Delhi on Thursday by the Tata group in collaboration with the Apollo group of hospitals, according to a Hindustan Times report. It was recently announced by Tata Medical and Diagnostics Ltd (TataMD) that the Feluda testing strip would be marketed as “TataMD’s CHECK”.

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The test is likely to be cheaper than the current gold standard RT-PCR and equally accurate. This will surely ramp up COVID-19 testings in the national capital. The kit was approved by Indian Council of Medical Research in September. Feluda kit has a high sensitivity of 96 percent and specificity of 98 percent, which means that it can accurately detect both positive and negative cases.

Here's how the Feluda Testing Kit works:

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Researchers from the Institute of Genomics and Integrative Biology named the test Feluda after the eponymous Bengali fictional detective. The kit priced at Rs 500 and can deliver a result in 45 minutes, is able to differentiate SARS-CoV-2 from other coronaviruses even if genetic variations between them are minute. Feluda changes colour if the virus is detected and doesn't need expensive machines for detection.

The CRISPR technology uses a highly specific CAS9 protein to find and bind to the target Covid signature. This is then coupled with paper-strip chemistry to elicit a visual readout on a paper strip.

Over the past few days, Delhi recorded a huge rise in COVID-19 cases. Notably, the national capital is witnessing the third wave of COVID-19. The city added a huge amount of cases and deaths amid the festive season. There are currently over 40,000 active cases in Delhi.

The national capital on Wednesday reported the highest single-day death due to COVID-19 so far. In the national capital, 131 people succumbed to coronavirus in the past 24 hours.