IP University to Lead Project to Develop Low-cost Test for Detecting Covid-19 Antibodies

The Guru Gobind Singh Indraprastha University will lead a project to develop a low-cost test for rapid detection of COVID-19 antibodies, a statement from the university said on Sunday.

The translational project of Rs 98 lakh was submitted to BIRAC-DBT by Dr Gaurav Pandey of the University School of Biotechnology (USBT). It has been selected for funding in response to a research consortium call on COVID -19, the statement added.

"It is a matter for pride that IP University will lead a multi-institutional project to develop the indigenous technology for rapid detection of COVID -19 antibodies with minimum infrastructural requirement," it said.

The Biotechnology Industry Research Council (BIRAC), a public sector enterprise set up by the Department of Biotechnology (DBT) through its COVID -19 research consortium after competitive evaluation, will fund the university and its partners to "develop a low-cost completely indigenous test for SARS COV2 antibody testing, which can be used for large-scale screening of pandemic population", it said.

Currently, most of these antibody tests either as complete tests or with some of key components such as antigens rely on imports, it said.

Dr Gaurav Pandey from IP University, Dr Anurag Rathore from Indian Institute of Technology, Delhi and Mr Prateek Mittal from Medsource Ozone form a translational team which will "develop a scalable process to produce the required antigens components and manufacture the point of care lateral flow immunoassay (LFIA) device".

The LFIA test provides the results in maximum 15-20 minutes and is almost resource independent, the statement said.

"It doesn't require high-end equipment and can be used in remote settings. The partnership with an industrial partner Medsource Ozone Pvt. Ltd will ensure faster diffusion of technology, manufacturing and commercialization," it added.