Feluda, FNCAS9 Editor-Limited Uniform Detective Assay, is a method of a test by paper. It was named after a famous Indian fictional detective. The Indian Drug Authority approved the Test-strip for COVID-19 check-ups which shows results in less than an hour. In a few months, it will be developed for self-testing. But, for now, it will be available only for lab tests.
How does the paper strip test works?
Feluda uses CRISPR (Clustered Regularly Interspaced Short Palindromic Repeats) technology to detect the Coronavirus by adapting the Cas9 protein. The test gets completed in four steps. It extracts the viral RNA from nasal or throat swab samples, then the RNA gets converted to DNA by the reverse method.
Then, the Cas9 protein binds itself with the DNA of the virus, and during the amplification process, it generates a colorimetric reaction on the paper strip. On the last step, the paper strip is dipped in the Feluda mix with that same component, Cas9 protein, and if the paper shows two lines then it’s positive, if it shows one line then it is negative.
The whole procedure has been manufactured by IGIB scientists, Souvik Maiti, senior principal scientist, and Debojyoti Chakraborty, a senior scientist.
More about the Test kit
The test kit doesn’t require any machinery equipment, it needs skilled manpower. As per the Ministry of Science and Technology, it has 96% sensitivity and 98% specificity to detect the SARS CoV-2 virus. The Tata Group is handling the marketing strategy.
The commercial availability and the market price of the test strip will be announced soon.
India has ranked the second most position in suffering COVID-19 cases in the world, and a test kit which could give a result within an hour was very much needed. Feluda is a paper strip test that can detect the DNA of the virus, and the Indian Drug Authority has approved it.