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Sree Chitra Tirunal Institute developed magnetic nanoparticle-based RNA extraction kit for PCR and LAMP tests for COVID-19

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Sree Chitra Tirunal Institute for Medical Sciences and Technology (SCTIMST), an Institution of National Importance under the Department of Science and Technology, Govt. of India has developed ribonucleic acid (RNA) extraction kit namely “Chitra Magna” for segregating RNA from swabs samples for COVID-19 tests that will enhance the chances of identifying positive cases of the contagion.The Institute has filed for a patent for this technology.magnetic nanoparticle-based RNA extraction kit

  • It is developed by Dr Anoop Thekkuveettil and his team, which has earlier,came up with Chitra GeneLAMP-N.
  • Chitra Magna provides a highly purified and concentrated level of RNA of the causative virus of COVID-19 pandemic i.e.SARS-COV-2.
  • The technology of Chitra Magna has been transferred to the Agappe Diagnostics Ltd Ernakulam.

Key Points:

Easy to use Technology: The “Chitra Magna” technology is simpler than imported isolation kits as it uses magnetic nanoparticle to capture and concentrate the RNA from swab sample.It is to be noted that the critical step in detecting this virus is confirming the presence of the RNA of the virus in the sample.

Advantage of Chitra Magna: Currently, in the lab, the RNA of SARS-CoV-2 is extracted, converted into DNA and amplified using the PCR technique or LAMP technique. In case, if some viral RNA disintegrates during storage and transportation of the patient samples, all of it is captured by the magnetic bead-based extraction technology of Chitra Magna.

Need for Chitra Magna: The majority of RNA isolation kits are imported and non-availability of them becomes restriction for RT-PCR (Reverse transcriptase- Polymerase chain reaction) testing.On the other hand, Chitra Magna can be used not only for Loop-mediated isothermal amplification (LAMP) testing but also for the RT-PCR test.

About Chitra GeneLAMP-N:
Earlier the institute has developed a low-cost diagnostic test kit “Chitra GeneLAMP-N” that can confirm COVID-19 (Coronavirus) in just 2 hours. The kit detects the N Gene of SARS-CoV-2 using reverse transcriptase loop-mediated amplification of viral nucleic acid.

Location– Thiruvananthapuram, Kerala
President– Dr. Vijay Kumar Saraswat
Director– Dr. Asha Kishore