Topic Covered :
Coronavirus: Govt lab claims to have identified ‘novel mutations’
Novel test may quickly, accurately detect novel coronavirus: Study
Delhi to begin clinical trials of ‘plasma therapy’ for coronavirus soon: Arvind Kejriwal
Chitra GeneLAMP-N makes confirmatory tests results of COVID 19 possible in 2 hours
CeNS develops portable sensor to ease heavy metal detection in water.
India to launch training programmes for SAARC healthcare professionals to fight COVID-19
Workforce guideline lands tea gardens in trouble
CORONAVIRUS: GOVT LAB CLAIMS TO HAVE IDENTIFIED ‘NOVEL MUTATIONS’
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Claiming a breakthrough in studying the mysterious ways in which Covid-19 works, scientists at the government-run Gujarat Biotechnology Research Centre have identified three "novel mutations" in the virus that they say could become building blocks in the quest for a universal cure.
Dr CG Joshi, director of the Gandhinagar-based institute, said on Thursday that genome sequencing of a Covid-19 sample taken from a patient in Gujarat revealed nine mutations, of which six had been reported in various countries hit by the pandemic.
Three mutations are unique to our sequencing. This indicates that the virus is mutating fast.
The institute plans to collect about 100 more samples from across the state to arrive at a comprehensive set of findings.
Hareet Shukla, secretary of science and technology, said the results of genome sequencing would be crucial to deciding a "drug strategy" for the viral infection as well as developing a vaccine for it.
NOVEL TEST MAY QUICKLY, ACCURATELY DETECT NOVEL CORONAVIRUS: STUDY
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Scientists have developed a new test that may detect the novel coronavirus more accurately and quickly, and relieve the pressure on polymerase chain reaction (PCR) based tests currently used in the fight against COVID-19 pandemic.
Millions of people have been tested for the novel coronavirus, most using a kit that relies on the PCR, a sensitive method that amplifies SARS-CoV-2 RNA from patient swabs so that tiny amounts of the virus can be detected.
Researchers including those from the Institute of Environmental Engineering, ETH Zurich in Switzerland, have developed a potentially more accurate diagnostic based on plasmonic photothermal sensing.
The method can detect interactions between molecules on the surface of a constructed metallic nanostructure as a local change in refractive index.
The team made DNA probes that recognised specific SARS-CoV-2 RNA sequences and attached them to gold nanoparticles.
When they added pieces of the viral genome, the RNA attached to the complementary probes like a zipper being closed.
The team used a laser to heat up the nanoparticles, making it more difficult for imperfectly matched sequences to remain attached, reducing false-positives.
For example, a nucleic acid "zipper" missing a couple of teeth -- indicating a partial mismatch -- would unzip under these conditions. In this way, the researchers could discriminate between SARS-CoV-2 and its close relative, SARS-CoV-1.
Although the test still needs to be tested on intact viral RNA from patient samples, it could help relieve the current pressure on PCR-based tests, they said.
DELHI TO BEGIN CLINICAL TRIALS OF ‘PLASMA THERAPY’ FOR CORONAVIRUS SOON: ARVIND KEJRIWAL
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Delhi government has got the Centre’s permission to conduct clinical trials of ‘plasma therapy’ to help critically ill coronavirus patients, Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal said on Thursday.
Plasma therapy is meant for only those coronavirus patients who are on ventilator support and are critical.
Through the Plasma Therapy, transfusion of plasma from a convalescent coronavirus patient to a critical patient is done. As the blood of a convalescent patient is rich in antibodies it is expected to help in the recovery of the critical patient.
In this therapy, the donor has to be a patient who has recovered, showed multiple negative testing and showed no symptoms after 14 days of isolation.
The Indian Council of Medical Research has asked institutions from across the country to participate in the clinical trials to assess the plasma treatment using protocols.
However, the trials needed permission from the Drug Control authority since conducting it involves relaxation in blood donation norms.
CHITRA GENELAMP-N MAKES CONFIRMATORY TESTS RESULTS OF COVID 19 POSSIBLE IN 2 HOURS
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Sree Chitra Tirunal Institute for Medical Sciences and Technology, Trivandrum, an Institute of National Importance, of the Department of Science and Technology (DST), has developed a diagnostic test kit that can confirm COVID19 in 2 hours at low cost.
The confirmatory diagnostic test, which detects the N Gene of SARS- COV2 using reverse transcriptase loop-mediated amplification of viral nucleic acid (RT-LAMP), will be one of the world’s first few if not the first of its kinds in the world.
The test kit, funded by the DST called Chitra GeneLAMP-N, is highly specific