Filipina scientist behind saliva RT-PCR test
A Filipina scientist has led the development of an alternative reverse transcription-polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR) test that uses saliva instead of nose swab to detect coronavirus, according to a report by GMA News.
According to an update shared on Sen. Richard Gordon’s Facebook page on Thursday, Dr. Diana Ranoa of University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign was at the helm of this test development with the collaboration of Dr. Michael Tee and his team from UP College of Medicine.
This saliva RT-PCR test was “cheaper, faster, and non-invasive—no more painful oral and nasal swabbing needed,” said the post by Senator Gordon, who is also the chairman of the Philippine Red Cross.
He also said it was the result of the “collaboration of the best Filipino minds.”
“Our entire COVID-19 response was made possible through the best and brightest of the Filipino youth: med techs who work long shifts and risk their lives to save others, volunteers from Dashboard Philippines who are volunteer students based all over the world, and cum laude graduates from our country’s top universities,” he said.
Gordon announced on Tuesday that PRC would be rolling out the COVID-19 tests nationwide by the first week of February.
“By first week of February, we should have saliva testing in all Red Cross laboratories in the country; schools and offices will get tested through our PRC chapters,” he said in a Facebook post.
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