- INDICoV-Om kit is the first kit developed by any government institution for the omicron variant.
- It will make India self-reliant in RT-PCR diagnostics.
- It will help in detecting omicron variants quickly and cost-effective manner, over genome sequencing for a large population.
Interesting Facts about INDICoV-Om RT-PCR Kit
- The kit has been made within two months.
- It is one of the very few specific kits for detecting Omicron in the entire world.
- It will provide the test results in two hours. It may cost around Rs 150 – Rs 200.
- It can also be aligned to detect other emerging variants of Covid infection and respiratory infections.
When will the public get access to the Om kit?
- The kit has been referred to the ICMR-National Institute of Virology (NIV) for validation.
- Once approved by the Indian Council of Medical Research (ICMR), The kit will be launched by mid-February.
Significance of Om kit
- Most RT-PCR-based diagnostic kits do not confirm the covid variant causing the infection.
- Currently, the detection of omicron variants depends on tests like the S-gene dropout or by NGS (Nextgen sequencing) of the whole viral genome.
- The S-gene drop-out method is not specific and does not pinpoint the type of variant.
- Also, The NGS method has certain limitations such as expense, turnaround, and the number of centres that can provide such service.
- The Om diagnostic kit will be used to specifically detect the omicron variant.
- Its detection will help in the proper diagnosis and treatment of the patient.
- The CSIR – CDIR’s scientists have developed an indigenous RT-PCR kit called ‘Om’ for testing the omicron variant.