India, Israel test four technologies to detect Covid-19 in 30 seconds
New Delhi : The only solution one can see right now from coronavirus pandemic is to detect the Covid-19 infection and take precautions accordingly. India and Israel are testing four technologies which can detect and produce results for Covid-19 in just 30 seconds.
About 10,000 people will be tested twice; once using the gold standard molecular RT-PCR test and then the four Israeli technologies to evaluate whether these innovations will work in a field setting.
Changing the way testing was being done till date, people will not be asked for swab samples, instead, they will have to blow air inside the instrument which will collect sample for test.
If these technologies test successfully then this will pave a way for reopening on businesses and people would be able to coexist with the coronavirus till a vaccine is created.
"The diagnostics are being tested in a collaboration between the Israeli Defence R&D, the Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO), and Council of Scientific and Industrial Research (CSIR). The first technology attempts to detect the virus by a technique called terahertz spectroscopy. In this, a sample is taken, deposited on a chip and then examined in a manner that specifically detects SARS-CoV-2 virus that causes Covid-19. This does not involve any chemistry or reagents as it does in the current standard tests. The results will come in less than a minute," Hindustan Times quoted professor K Vijay Raghavan, principal scientific advisor to Prime Minister Narendra Modi.
Raghavan said the second approach is called an isothermal test, and it amplifies the genetic material of the virus rapidly. "The third approach detects what are called poly amino acids specific to the virus. The fourth approach is to study speech samples from asymptomatic and presymptomatic patients, compare them with others and see if the tools of artificial intelligence can be used to identify those who are Covid-19 positive. All these approaches are working well in the laboratory setting, but the challenge is to see how they will work in a field setting," he said.