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Minal Dakhave Bhosale: The wonder woman who delivered India's first coronavirus testing kit, then her baby

Sunday, March 29, 2020 • Tamil Comments

Minal Dakhave Bhosale: The wonder woman who delivered Indias first coronavirus testing kit, then her baby

It was just hours before delivering her baby girl, virologist Minal Dakhave Bhosale, Mylab’s research, and development chief, introduced India's first Wuhan Coronavirus testing kit that delivers result in just two and a half hours as compared to the imported testing kits which take six-seven hours to deliver the results. Under Minal Dakhave Bhosale leadership, the coronavirus testing kit called Patho Detect was developed in a record time of six weeks.

We started the development process for Covid-19 six weeks ago on an emergency basis looking at the national crisis and need for an indigenous accurate solution for improved management. We have developed a unique formulation for test reagents that increases the catalytic activities of the enzymes, reducing the enzyme unit requirement, resulting in reduced cost”, said Minal, who has a decade long experience in the diagnostic field, and also worked on the swine flu disease at NIV, Pune, during the 2009 outbreak. On March 18 evening, within an hour of submitting the proposal for FDA approval, she got admitted to a hospital for a c-section and the very next day, Minal delivered her baby girl.

coronavirus

Initially in India, only the state labs were allowed to test for coronavirus, but permission has now been extended to several private labs too. Mylab was the first in the country to receive a commercial clearance from the Food and Drug Authority (FDA), the Central Drugs Standard Control Organisation (CDSCO) and the National Institute of Virology (NIV). This made-in-India kits reached the market on Thursday and costs Rs 1,200, about a quarter of the Rs 4500 that India pays to import testing kits from abroad. Mylab shipped the first batch of 150 to diagnostic labs in Pune, Mumbai, Delhi, Goa and Bangalore this week. The next batch will be sent out on Monday. The diagnostic firm has said that it is capable of proving up to 100,000 Covid-19 testing kits per week and can produce up to 200,000 if required.

As the spread of novel coronavirus, which has, so far, claimed 19 lives in India, this home-grown kit is viewed as a key breakthrough.

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