Kerala

TrueNat results can be the final word

TrueNat Beta CoV, a fully indigenous diagnostic platform, which was being engaged by the State government in public sector hospitals as a first-level screening test for COVID-19, can now be used as the final confirmatory test, according to the latest advisory issued by the Health Department.

This has become possible with the State newly acquiring the facilities for performing the confirmatory assay also.

TrueNat is a chip-based platform which uses a two-step assay to detect SARS-CoV-2 virus. Step one is an E-gene screening assay. Step two identifies the RdRp gene in the viral RNA, which can confirm the presence of the virus.

Kerala has been utilising 20 TrueNat machines to test for COVID-19 at its 18 public sector hospitals. However, till now the machines were capable of doing only the step one assay because of which the ICMR had directed that all samples tested using TrueNat and found to be E-gene positive be reconfirmed using an RT-PCR or Gene Xpert test.

The chips for performing the step two confirmatory assay, which detects the RdRp gene from viral RNA has now arrived in the State. Hence, all samples which are found E-gene positive can be confirmed in the same laboratory using the step two assay.

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Printable version | May 15, 2021 8:12:02 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/kerala/truenat-results-can-be-the-final-word/article31872536.ece

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