Daily Current Affairs for UPSC Civil Services Exam – 22 October 2020

In Today’s News:

  1. COVIRAP Device – ICMR approves.

1. COVIRAP Device – ICMR approves

News Summary

Indian Council of Medical Research has approved the IIT Kharagpur’s new COVID diagnostic low costing device COVIRAP.

Prelims GS – Science & Technology

  • COVIRAP is a cuboid-shaped portable testing device that can deliver results in an hour, making it an effective tool to scale up Covid-19 screening in peripheral and rural areas.
  • COVIRAP Device showed accuracy similar to RT-PCR testing.
  • COVIRAP test would cost about Rs.500 and can be operated by a person with minimal training whereas RT-PCR kit is costly and it requires to be operated by a molecular biologist.
Working of COVIRAP:
  • Each testing kit contains three master mixes which can confirm the presence of the virus.
  • After the RNA sample is collected, it is mixed with master mixes and heated to a certain temperature after being inserted in the pre-programmed machine.
  • There is a second heating step which is exclusive to this device and has been patented, which makes the machine unique.
  • After the heating processes are completed, the RNA samples are put on a strip.
  • Whether a patient is COVID-19 positive or negative is dependent on whether lines appear on the strips or not.
  • The strips are then inserted in a cartridge in the machine from where the smartphone app uses the camera and inbuilt analytical tool to determine whether the test is positive or negative.


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