BY VINIT WAHI
Defence Research and Development Organisation, DRDO has developed an antibody detection-based kit ‘DIPCOVAN’, the DIPAS-VDx COVID-19 IgG Antibody Microwell ELISA for sero-surveillance. The kit will be very useful for understanding COVID‐19 epidemiology and assessing an individual’s previous SARS‐CoV‐2 exposure. The kit can detect both spike as well as nucleocapsid proteins of SARS-CoV-2 virus with a high sensitivity of 97 per cent and specificity of 99 per cent.
The Defence Ministry said, the kit has been developed in association with Vanguard Diagnostics Private Limited, a development and manufacturing diagnostics company based at New Delhi. The company will commercially launch the product during the first week of next month. It requires just 75 minutes to conduct the test without any cross reactivity with other diseases. The kit has a shelf life of 18 months and it is expected to be available at about 75 rupees per test.
The DIPCOVAN kit was developed indigenously by the scientists, followed by extensive validation on more than one thousand patient samples at various COVID designated hospitals in Delhi. The antibody detection kit is approved by Indian Council of Medical Research in April this year. In May, the product received the regulatory approval from the Drugs Controller General of India to manufacture for sale and distribution. Defence Minister Rajnath Singh has appreciated the efforts of DRDO and the industry in developing the kit at the time of need.