New Delhi, Jan 20 (PTI) Chennai-based medical device firm Kriya Medical Technologies on Thursday said it has received Indian Council of Medical Research approval for Krivida Novus COVID-19 testing kit — developed in collaboration with ImmuGenix Bioscience — that can also detect the Omicron variant.

The kit detects the SARS-CoV-2 virus and also differentiates the Omicron variant from Delta and other variants. The test takes about 45 minutes to detect the infection and determine the variant, the company said in a statement.

“KRIVIDA Novus is a one of its kind test that not only differentiates the variants but also detects the sub-lineages of Omicron. The kit is compatible with Real-Time PCR machines with a test run time of roughly 45 minutes,” Kriya Medical Technologies CEO and Founder Anu Moturi said.

Besides tackling the issue of delayed testing, the kit also helps in swift prevention of spread and “since the test can differentiate between variants, it’s also ideal for entry point screening of travellers at airports”, Moturi added.

ImmuGenix Biosciences Chief Scientist, Founder and Director Dr Naveen Kumar Venkatesan said currently, patients who test positive for COVID-19 have to undergo genome sequencing to know the variant they have been infected with.

“KRIVIDA Novus kit employs a specific pattern of a unique combination of ‘SGTF’ (S Gene Target Failure) strategy and ‘Omicron specific amplification signal’ to detect the variant. The kit detects the Omicron variant (B.1.1.529) and all its sub-lineages, such as BA.1, BA.2 and BA.3,” Venkatesan added.

The Krivida Novus kit will be produced at Kriya’s manufacturing facility at Oragadam in Chennai. The company currently has a manufacturing capacity of 5 million kits and plans to increase it to 10 million within a week, depending on the demand, the statement said. PTI RKL BAL BAL

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