Scientists in Turkey have produced materials that will upgrade novel coronavirus tests, a senior official announced Monday.
The country’s National Metrology Institute (UME), under the Scientific and Technological Research Council of Turkey (TUBITAK), was able to produce RNA-based reference materials that will allow for more accurate PCR tests, Industry and Technology Minister Mustafa Varank said in a statement.
“This will increase the accuracy of PCR tests. Also, the materials produced will be used for the internal quality-control of PCR kits,” said Varank, adding that they had requested these materials from other equivalent bodies, but that those had failed to deliver.
“They made lame excuses […] We launched a project to produce these reference materials ourselves for use by laboratories and kit manufacturers in our country. We completed our work in such a short time as three months.”
He underlined that the materials produced domestically were more resistant to dust and heat than those that would have been provided by these institutions.
The materials will serve to confirm the signal generated by PCR tests, thereby increasing the reliability of their results.
For his part, UME Director Mustafa Cetintas said they guaranteed the quality of the PCR tests made with reference materials, which had been produced with local and national facilities.
“The most important contribution of this material is that it does not require any cooling process. We can easily distribute the material to stakeholders in the country without subjecting it to the cooling process,” he added.
*Writing by Yunus Girgin in Ankara
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