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Chinese firm develops kit detecting novel coronavirus in 15 minutes

Chinese firm develops kit detecting novel coronavirus in 15 minutes

OSAKA: A Chinese firm has developed a test kit that can detect the new coronavirus that causes COVID-19 in 15 minutes, far quicker than the current method, a media report said.

Textile and chemical product-maker Kurabo Industries has announced that from next week it will begin selling test kits developed by its Chinese partner.

The kit, which uses a small blood sample and a reagent, is expected to reduce time and costs compared to the Polymerase chain reaction (PCR) test currently used to detect the pneumonia-causing disease, according to the maker. PCR testing takes four to six hours after a sample is collected from a patient’s throat or other parts of the body.

The new kit will take only 15 minutes to display a red line on a test strip after a blood sample from a suspected patient is mixed with a reagent on the strip. The red line indicates the presence of antibodies for the virus in the blood and a positive test result. The kit developed in China has already been used by Chinese medical institutions, report said.

It will be on sale from Monday, and unlike the current PCR tests, it is also effective in detecting the virus in patients at early stages of the disease, the Chinese firm said.