Assam Scientists Work Towards Plugging Gaps in COVID-19 Testing

A research team in Assam has come up with a potentially safer and cheaper alternative testing method for COVID-19.

2 min read
Image used for representational purposes. 

A research team in Assam has come up with a potentially less harmful and cost-effective alternative testing method for COVID-19.

The team, comprising of experts from North Eastern Hill University (NEHU), Adamas University and Shillong University, made “breakthrough” research to facilitate replacement of Thermal Infrared Scanners and CT imaging currently used for early detection of COVID-19, reports The Times Of India.

Dinesh Bhatia from NEHU and Moumita Mukherjee from ADAMAS and their collaborative research group are working on an Artifical Intelligence (AI)- powered T-Ray scanning unit to plug the present gaps in the infrared thermal scanners.

In a statement, the two researchers said the fingerprint absorption of T-Ray radiation in the lungs and the contrasted thermal image of affected as well as healthy lungs will help professionals detect the virus even in patients who are asymptomatic.

The statement read:

“The product will be cost-effective, allowing quick diagnosis with accurate in screening and monitoring of mass population. Their extensive research is showing a ray of hope in easy identification followed by safe monitoring of COVID-19 patients worldwide. They acknowledge the support of their respective institutions for carrying out this research study.”

They added that due to a lack of testing kits in India, those with minor symptoms are left in the dark about whether they have a simple cold or a mild case of COVID-19.

Further, they said Thermal Infrared system used to scan people at airports have major limitations in identifying asymptomatic patients.

“Since Terahertz is non-ionising in nature, its repetitive use in scanning and imaging for screening and monitoring will be harmless to the population and its users such doctors, paramedical team and other security staff in the vicinity in comparison to using X Ray or CT scan device, as both (X Ray or CT scan device) are and can cause cancer if repeatedly used for testing on COVID-19 patients in future", said Bhatia

(With inputs from The Times Of India)

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