‘Feluda’ test approved
The Drugs Controller General of India (DCGI) approved ‘Feluda’, the Tata Clustered Regularly Interspaced Short Palindromic Repeats (CRISPR) test powered by the CSIR-IGIB, for commercial launch, Union Ministry of Science and Technology’s CSIR has said in a statement. The test was approved as per the guidelines set by the Indian Council of Medical Research (ICMR), which has been spearheading the battle against COVID-19 in India. The test met high quality benchmarks, and was found to have 96% sensitivity and 98% specificity for the detection of novel coronavirus.
- The test makes use of an indigenous, “cutting-edge” CRISPR technology to detect the genomic sequence of the coronavirus.
- The newly approved test is the first diagnostic test in the world to deploy a specially-adapted Cas9 protein for the successful detection of SARS-CoV-2, the novel coronavirus which causes COVID-19.
- This was a significant achievement on the part of the scientific community in India, since the team did everything from the research to the development of a scalable, reliable and high-accuracy test within less than 100 days.
- The ‘Feluda’ or Tata CRISPR test can achieve the same accuracy levels as those of the traditional and widely used RT-PCR tests, while having a quicker turn-around time, being easier to use and requiring less expensive equipment.
- The test was developed due to the scientific community and the industry working in tandem, with the Tata Group working closely with ICMR and CSIR-IGIB for the development of a high-quality test.
- This can help India significantly increase its testing capability at an economical advantage within a short span of time. The test is ‘Made in India’ and is safe, accessible, reliable as well as affordable.