Pakistan launches its first COVID-19 testing kit

By: News Desk      Published: 08:10 PM, 12 Jun, 2020
Pakistan launches its first COVID-19 testing kit

Made-in-Pakistan coronavirus testing kit has got Drug Regulatory Authority of Pakistan’s approval and would be available soon for one-fourth the price than the other kits available in the market soon.

Pakistan has achieved this significant milestone through the scientists of the National University of Science and Technology (NUST), who have developed first-ever COVID-19 testing kit in Pakistan. The testing kit, a PCR-based assay called N-CovKit, was developed by scientists and professors Dr Aneela Javed and Dr Ali Zohaib at the Attaur Rahman School of Applied Biosciences at NUST.

Federal Minister for Science and Technology Fawad Chaudhry announced the news on Twitter on Friday.

“Another landmark achieved.... DRAP has approved Pakistan first COVID testing kit, Congratulations to @Official_NUST and our brilliant scientists people have made us proud ... this ll bring significant cost reduction of COVID tests also ll save huge import bill< the mister said in a tweet.

The NUST said it had successfully performed lab trials of the N-CovKit on 330 blinded samples. “The kits will soon be mass produced by a selected leading pharmaceutical company as soon as the company is granted DRAP approval for commercial production,” read the university’s statement.

NUST had developed the “Molecular Diagnostic Assay” for the detection of the novel coronavirus in collaboration with the Wuhan Institute of Virology China, DZIF Germany, Columbia University USA and Armed Forces Institute of Pathology Rawalpindi, it said in a statement in March.