Cipla on October 28 announced the commercialisation of antibody detection kits for COVID-19 in India.
As part of this collaborative effort, Cipla will be responsible for the marketing and distribution of the SARS CoV-2-IgG antibody detection ELISA that will be manufactured by KARWA.
ICMR has provided the requisite technological knowhow and process for developing the test kits to approved manufacturers.The product will be marketed under the brand name ‘ELIFast’. Cipla’s expansive distribution network will help in ensuring seamless supply of kits across the country. Supply will be undertaken through channels approved by ICMR to ensure equitable access.
IgG antibody tests identify the immune status of individuals to the COVID-19 infection.
ELIfast has been validated and approved by ICMR and the National Institute of Virology (NIV), Pune. It is found to have specificity and sensitivity of 99.33 percent and 92 percent, respectively. The kit is user friendly with a simple protocol, ready-to-use reagents and is compatible with common ELISA equipment.
Frequently Asked Questions
A vaccine works by mimicking a natural infection. A vaccine not only induces immune response to protect people from any future COVID-19 infection, but also helps quickly build herd immunity to put an end to the pandemic. Herd immunity occurs when a sufficient percentage of a population becomes immune to a disease, making the spread of disease from person to person unlikely. The good news is that SARS-CoV-2 virus has been fairly stable, which increases the viability of a vaccine.
There are broadly four types of vaccine — one, a vaccine based on the whole virus (this could be either inactivated, or an attenuated [weakened] virus vaccine); two, a non-replicating viral vector vaccine that uses a benign virus as vector that carries the antigen of SARS-CoV; three, nucleic-acid vaccines that have genetic material like DNA and RNA of antigens like spike protein given to a person, helping human cells decode genetic material and produce the vaccine; and four, protein subunit vaccine wherein the recombinant proteins of SARS-COV-2 along with an adjuvant (booster) is given as a vaccine.
Vaccine development is a long, complex process. Unlike drugs that are given to people with a diseased, vaccines are given to healthy people and also vulnerable sections such as children, pregnant women and the elderly. So rigorous tests are compulsory. History says that the fastest time it took to develop a vaccine is five years, but it usually takes double or sometimes triple that time.