Coronavirus Pandemic: Makerere University Developing COVID-19 Testing Kit

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AfricaTembelea

KAMPALA, Uganda — In the race to invent a faster coronavirus test, a group of scientists at the Department of Pathology of Makerere University, who manufactured the Ebola testing kit early this year have announced they are working round the clock to avail rapid testing kits for coronavirus.

According to Dr Misaki Wayengera, the lead researcher at the Department of Pathology at Makerere University, the team started working on the kit in February.

“The test uses a joint platform where you get a swab from the nose or mouth, put it in the tube, shake and get results,” Dr. Misaki said.

Africa Tembelea understands that, unlike the current testing that require complex machine, the one being developed uses a small tube and can be used in remote upcountry hospitals.

“We took up the mandate to develop the kit because people were bothering us. We already identified some proteins that will work and we are testing them,” he explained.

Adding that, “the test uses agglutination platform -where you get a swab from the nose or mouth, put it in the tube, shake and get results.”

He, also revealed that his team was working with a French partner to develop the kit which is expected by the end of April.

When, asked what the price of the kits would be, Dr Misaki said each would cost about US$1 (approximately UGX. 4000).

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