IIT Guhawati in collaboration with RR Animal Healthcare Ltd. recently developed Viral Transport Media (VTM) kits, RT-PCR kits and RNA isolation kits with inputs from Gauhati Medical College and Hospital (GMCH). With the increasing demands for these kits and the exorbitant price associated with them, the National Health Mission, Assam has urged the technological institute to develop kits that are affordable yet as sterile as those available in the market. They were successfully launched by the Minister of Finance, Health and Family Welfare of Assam, Himanta Biswa Sarma on June 17, 2020.
“We want to identify and contain this disease at an early stage and it is vital that we have all the crucial kits and materials so that our frontline healthcare workers and doctors who are doing a commendable job do not face any hurdles. We are very happy with this product development and launch of the VTM and other Covid-19 related kits in IIT Guwahati Assam,” said Sarma. The VTM kits are generally used for collecting nasal and oral swab specimens from suspected covid-19 patients which are further cultured and tested.
Those developed at IIT Guwahati can be used for collection, transport, maintenance and long-term freezer storage of the specimens. The sterile kits are designed in compliance with standard CDC protocols for viral specimen collection and are packed in user-friendly manner and their transportability helps in preserving the specimens for up to 72 hours.
In addition to this, the RT-PCR kits which IIT Guwahati has developed in collaboration with RR Animal Healthcare Ltd help in determining the presence or absence of coronavirus in a viral specimen through a series of processes. The large scale production of these kits is predominantly aimed to meet the requirements of the entire Assam state and across the country in the future.