Feluda Is Back! This Time To Detect Covid-19 Infection
By FnF Correspondent | PUBLISHED: 20, Sep 2020, 20:32 pm IST | UPDATED: 20, Sep 2020, 20:32 pm IST
Delhi: 'Feluda', the Tata CRISPR (Clustered Regularly Interspaced Short Palindromic Repeats) Covid-19 test, has been approved by the Drugs Controller General of India, the Council of Scientific and Industrial Research (CSIR) announced on Saturday. For the uninitiated, the name 'Feluda' has perhaps been chosen as the name also belongs to a popular Indian detective character on the lines of Sherlock Holmes, in stories written by legendary writer-filmmaker Satyajit Ray.Indigenously developed, cutting-edge CRISPR technology has been put to use for the detection of the genomic sequence of the SARS-CoV-2 virus.
The Tata CRISPR test achieves accuracy levels of traditional RT-PCR tests with quicker turnaround time, less expensive equipment and better ease of use.
CRISPR is a genome-editing technology to diagnose diseases and has been developed by CSIR-IGIB (Institute of Genomics and Integrative Biology).
"The Tata CRISPR (Clustered Regularly Interspaced Short Palindromic Repeats) test, powered by CSIR-IGIB (Institute of Genomics and Integrative Biology) FELUDA, received regulatory approvals today from DCGI for commercial launch, as per ICMR guidelines, meeting high-quality benchmarks with 96 percent sensitivity and 98 percent specificity for detecting novel coronavirus," the statement said.
The Tata CRISPR test is the world's first diagnostic test to deploy a specially adapted Cas9 protein to successfully detect the virus causing COVID-19, it stated.
Furthermore, CRISPR is a futuristic technology that can be used for the detection of multiple other pathogens in the future.
"The Tata Group has worked closely with CSIR-IGIB and ICMR to create a high-quality test that will help the nation ramp up COVID-19 testing quickly and economically, with a "Made in India" product that is safe, reliable, affordable and accessible," the statement added.
Taking about the launch, Girish Krishnamurthy, CEO, TATA Medical and Diagnostics Ltd said, "The approval for the Tata CRISPR test for Covid-19 will give a boost to the country's efforts in fighting the global pandemic.
"The commercialization of the Tata CRISPR test reflects the tremendous R&D talent in the country which can collaborate to transform India's contributions to the global healthcare and scientific research world," he said.