Microsoft India will fund two projects of the Indian Institute of Technology (IIT), Delhi, both on new methods of testing the coronavirus disease, the institute has said. One of the two projects has already got a nod from ICMR; the other is an “ELISA-based diagnostic serological assay” against COVID-19.
If successful, the second test kit can help people diagnose themselves at home, claimed the IIT. Both the test kits will offer an “effective, quick, robust, and affordable diagnostic solution to COVID-19 outbreak,” the institute added. The funds from Microsoft India, said IIT, will be utilised for establishing a fast-PCR protocol for the ICMR-approved assay.
“We want to make sure researchers working to combat COVID-19 have access to the tools and resources they need. Researchers at IIT Delhi are leading a critical effort to develop low-cost diagnostic solutions that will make COVID-19 testing much more affordable and accessible for all. Microsoft India is proud to support this effort and we hope that by expanding access to our technology resources and grants, we can help accelerate this important work,” Rohini Srivathsa, National Technology Officer, Microsoft India was quoted as saying.
Prof Anurag S Rathore, Dean, Corporate Relations, IIT Delhi said, “Testing continues to be a challenge in managing COVID-19 and is likely to remain so for the years to come. IIT Delhi happens to be the first academic institute successful in offering a test that has been approved by ICMR. The grant from Microsoft India will aid in commercialisation of the probe free detection assay that has been developed at IIT Delhi and also fund research on examining the possibility of creating an ELISA like assay for COVID detection. This collaboration highlights IIT Delhi’s strength in healthcare. We wish success to both the teams in their respective projects.”
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