The Defence Research and Development Organization (DRDO) has recently developed an antibody detection kit for the early screening of COVID-19.
- An antibody detection-based kit ‘DIPCOVAN’, the DIPS-VDx COVID 19 IGg Antibody Microwell ELISA for sero surveillance has been developed by the Defence Institute of Physiology and Allied Sciences, a lab of DRDO, in association with Delhi based firm Vanguard Diagnostics Pvt Ltd.
- The COVID-19 antibody detection kit was approved by the Indian Council of Medical Research in April 2021.
- 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.
- In May, the product received regulatory approval from the Drugs Controller General of India to manufacture for sale and distribution.
Significance of the DIPCOVAN Kit:
- The kit seeks to be very useful for understanding COVID‐19 epidemiology and assessing an individual’s previous SARS‐CoV‐2 exposure.
- The kit can detect both spikes as well as nucleocapsid proteins of the SARS-CoV-2 virus with a high sensitivity of 97% and specificity of 99%.
- 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.
- DIPCOVAN aims for the qualitative detection of IgG antibodies in human serum or plasma, targeting the SARS-CoV-2 related antigens.
- The DRDO had also launched an anti-COVID drug 2-deoxy-D-glucose (2-DG).
- The drug is developed by the Institute of Nuclear Medicine and Allied Sciences of DRDO in partnership with Dr. Reddy’s Laboratories.
- The first batch of the anti-COVID drug was launched by the Union Defence Minister Rajnath Singh.