RT Lamp i.e. Reverse Transcriptase loop-mediated isothermal amplification is an advanced technology for COVID-19 infection diagnosis.

Key Points

  • RT Lamp is a superior technique than the presently available techniques of detecting COVID-19 like RT CPR. RT Lamp is a one-step nucleic acid amplification method that multiplies specific sequences of RNA of the COVID virus.
  • This method, unlike RT PCR, can be carried out using a constant temperature of 65 degrees Celsius.
  • In the present commercially available method (RT PCR), the COVID-19 infection is diagnosed by detecting the presence of viral nucleic acids in nasopharyngeal swab samples.
  • The RTPCR has some shortcomings like long turnaround time, costlier equipment, specialized training for personnel, special storage requirement, etc. Most importantly, the RT PCR requires differential temperatures in a single cycle of testing.

Benefits of RT Lamp

As RT Lamp requires a constant temperature, there is no need to wait for thermal changes and no time is lost. Thus, RT Lamp allows for higher amplification efficiency. RT Lamp is 10 times more sensitive than RT PCR. Other advantages include high selectivity and specificity for the genetic material. The method is more efficient and less costly than RT PCR. RT Lamp also provides early results after the test as compared to RT PCR.

ICMR Clearance for RT Lamp Technology

Recently, a Kochi-based medical devices manufacture, Agappe Diagnostics Ltd became the 1st Indian company to get approval from the Indian Council of Medical Research (ICMR) and Central Drug Standards Control Organisation (CDSCO) for RT Lamp. The company launched a new COVID-19 test kit using RT Lamp. As per the company, the test can be completed in 10 mins and results can be known in 1 hour.


Indian Council of Medical Research (ICMR) is the medical research organization of India that is responsible for formulating, coordinating, and promoting biomedical research. It was formed in the year 1911 as the Indian Research Fund Association (IRFA). The name of the body was changed to ICMR in the year 1949.


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