Friday November 22, 2019

FDA Gives Market Authorisation For Zika Diagnostic Test

A Zika diagnostic test developed by Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis was newly granted market authorisation

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Zika, Virus, Test
Aedes aegypti mosquitoes are seen in a mosquito cage at a laboratory in Cucuta, Colombia,Feb. 11, 2016. VOA

A Zika diagnostic test developed by Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis was newly granted market authorisation by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA).

According to a press release posted on the website of the university on Wednesday, using an antibody as well as other components to detect anti-Zika antibodies in the blood of people recently infected with the virus, the test can detect signs of Zika infection in serum samples within 12 weeks of infection, the Xinhua news agency reported.

Zika, Virus, Test
Scientists develop nanotechnology based test that detects Zika virus. Wikimedia Commons

The test is not meant to be used as a stand-alone proof of infection. The FDA recommends that the test be used only for people with symptoms of recent infection, as well as a history of living in or travelling to geographic regions where Zika circulates. Positive results should be confirmed in accordance with guidelines from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

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Zika virus can cause babies to be born with devastating brain damage. But the signs of Zika infection in adults: rash, fever, headache and body aches, are nonspecific, so a pregnant woman who develops such symptoms can’t be sure if she has contracted Zika or something less risky for her fetus.

“This test, along with another that detects viral genetic material at very early stages of infection, will help women and their doctors make informed health-care decisions,” said Michael S. Diamond, a co-inventor of the technology that underlies the test and a professor of molecular microbiology and of pathology and immunology at Washington University.  (IANS)

Next Story

Instagram Likely to Expand its Private Like Counts Test Globally

'Restrict' was also a feature recently announced to protect your account from unwanted interactions

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facebook, social media
Facebook, Messenger and Instagram apps are displayed on an iPhone, March 13, 2019, in New York. VOA

Instagram on Thursday announced to expand its Private Like Counts test globally, including in India.

In the test, you can still see your likes by tapping on the liker list, but others will not be able to see how many likes your post has received.

Likewise, you will not be able to see how many likes others’ posts have received.

Vishal Shah, Vice President of Product, Instagram, said that if you’re in the test, you’ll no longer see the total number of likes and views on photos and videos posted to Feed unless they’re your own.

facebook privacy
FILE – The Instagram icon is displayed on a mobile screen in Los Angeles. VOA

“While the feedback from early testing has been positive, this is a fundamental change to Instagram, so we’re continuing our test to learn more from our global community,” Shah said in a statement.

The test began in Canada in May 2019 and expanded to Australia, New Zealand, Japan, Brazil, Ireland and Italy in July this year.

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The roll-out of this test comes close on the heels of the recent ‘Instagram Experience’ organised in Mumbai where an ‘Unlabel’ content series was announced in partnership with Yuvaa, a youth media platform, featuring young Indians challenging stereotypes to be their authentic selves.

‘Restrict’ was also a feature recently announced to protect your account from unwanted interactions. (IANS)