Prof. Dr DM Vasudevan
Technical Director
Agappe Diagnostics Limited

MISPA i-Series in COVID-19 testing

A decade ago, nearly 35 percent of specific protein estimation were done by latex methods. The latex methods are qualitative/semi-quantitative tests. Due to this limiting factor of latex testing, there was always uncertainty of results in the borderline areas of reference ranges. These tests were affordable to the rural population, but due to their low specificity and sensitivity, the purpose of testing was eluded in many cases. Approximately 45 percent of the protein estimations were performed in turbidimetry assays in fully automated or semi-automated systems at a higher cost. Nephelometry, the gold standard method for protein testing, was unreachable to the common laboratories because of the very high cost of the automated instruments, reagents, and consumables.

With the motive to provide high-quality protein estimation at affordable costs, Agappe sowed the seed of its Intelligent breed–Mispa i-series specific protein analysis with gold standard rate-based nephelometry. Within a decade, our flagship models Mispa i2 and Mispa i3 changed the game for specific protein testing.

At present, we have more than 8500+ installations globally, with an assay panel that offers 25 parameters with better sensitivity and linearity that ensures flexibility in laboratory testing with marginal investment. Mispa i2 and Mispa i3 come with smart card calibration technology, which avoids reagent wastage and calibration errors, thus offering reliable results.

Studies show that parameters like CRP, D-dimer, and Ferritin are used to indicate the prognosis of COVID-19 infection. The C-reactive protein (CRP), serves as an early inflammation or infection marker; a drastic increase in CRP values was observed in severely ill patients with COVID-19, by up to 50,000 times in acute inflammation. CRP starts exhibiting raised levels within 6 hours and peaks at 48 hours. Ferritin is an iron storage protein that represents the primary source of reserve iron in each cell. However, increased serum ferritin concentrations can also be suggestive of conditions not related to iron storage, such as severe inflammation.

Therefore, IFCC has recommended monitoring of serum ferritin levels for COVID-19 management. D-dimer is one of the protein fragments produced when a blood clot gets dissolved in the body. D-dimer tests are used to help rule out the presence of an inappropriate blood clot (thrombus). The triggering of host inflammatory reactions also results in increased production of inflammatory cytokines that activate coagulation process. D-dimer levels correlate with disease severity, and is a reliable prognostic marker for in-hospital mortality in patients admitted for COVID-19.

To address the increasing demand of the CRP, D-dimer, and ferritin testing in India, Agappe has made efforts to increase the production line in both instruments and reagents. We have shipped more than 200,000 tests of CRP and 100,000 tests of D-dimer with the onset of the pandemic in India. This really helped in proper diagnosis during the initial screening of COVID-19 suspected cases.

Agappe is known for bringing in innovative technology at affordable price, and as the world is now traversing through a turbulent pathway, let us join our hands together to serve mankind by providing quality products for better diagnosis, prognosis, and treatment.

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