RGCB HLL COVID Kit – Coronavirus Rapid Test Kits Under Rs 400

Rajiv Gandhi Centre for Biotechnology (RGCB), a Thiruvananthapuram based National Institute under Ministry of Science & Technology and a Central Government Enterprise under Ministry of Health and Family Welfare, the HLL Lifecare Limited, the two public sector enterprises have developed Rapid Diagnostic Antibody kits for coronavirus detection separately.

Using the human serum, plasma, or whole blood obtained from the patient with signs and symptoms of respiratory infection, HLL’s ‘Makesure’ kit is a one-step COVID 19 IgM/IgG antibody detection kit. For using the kit in India, ICMR and NIV Pune have validated and approved the kit and at HLL’s rapid diagnostic kit manufacturing facility in Manesar in Haryana, these kits are manufactured.

For manufacturing and supplying the Rapid Antibody kit for COVID-19 detection, HLL is the first public sector company to get approval from ICMR in India. HLL sources said that the kit would be priced between Rs 350-400 per kit, and within the next ten days, the company plans to produce two lakh kits for supplying to various ICMR-approved testing facilities and hospitals.

As the COVID-19 cases are increasing over 10-12 percent every day in India, the country

is facing an acute shortage of diagnostic kits. To fight the disease, Trivitron Healthcare of Chennai and a Pune-based biotech company, Mylab have already developed rapid diagnostics kits,

A company called Ubio Biotechnologies, located at the RGCB campus in Kochi, is incubating the RGCB’s kit, which is expected to get approval this week. Sources said that RGCB plans to price the product at Rs 380, and it plans to make about 60 lakh kits in a month and about 2 lakh kits a day.

Within 15-20 minutes, the COVID-19 testing results can be delivered, said the HLL sources. As the molecular test volume pick-up will be required in huge quantities, HLL is also planning to develop and manufacture Viral Transport Medium (VTM) kits, which is in short supply in the country. From its manufacturing facilities in  Trivandrum, Peroorkkada, and Belgaum, Karnataka factories, HLL has also started manufacturing hand sanitizer, Medigard.

To confirm if a person has the novel coronavirus, the person who tested positive in the rapid tests have to also undertake the Reverse Transcription-Polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR) test. The test results from the RT-PCR may take about a day, while within just 30-45 minutes, the results from rapid antibody kits will be available.



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