ICMR approves indigenous kit to detect Omicron
- Posted By
Science & Technology
6th Jan, 2022
Recently, the Indian Council of Medical Research (ICMR) has approved a kit named OmiSure. It will be used to detect Omicron.
What is OmiSure?
- The kit was designed and developed by a US – based company Thermo Fisher. It was manufactured by Tata.
- It is currently the only kit in India to use this method to detect Omicron.
- The kit will be used to confirm Omicron in patients with its S-Gene Target Failure (SGTF) strategy.
- The price of the kit is Rs 240. The cost of RT – PCR kits sold by government agencies is Rs 20 to Rs 30.
What are S-Gene Target Failure (SGTF) cases?
- The Covid-19 tests such as RT-PCR target “multiple genes” of the virus so that a broad range of variants are covered.
- For example, ‘S’ Gene, ORF, ‘N’ gene, ‘E’ gene etc are viral genes that are targeted to detect COVID-19 virus.
- In the case of the Omicron variant, the ‘S’ gene is not getting detected in the RT-PCR test due to mutation in the gene while other gene targets are getting detected. This occurrence is called ‘S’ Gene Target Failure (SGTF) positive cases.
- Such samples can be presumptively reported as Omicron positive.