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The Union Minister for Science & Technology, Earth Sciences and Environment, Forest & Climate Change, Dr. Harsh Vardhan launching the four major projects at Sree Chitra Tirunal Institute for Medical Sciences and Technology, in Thiruvananthapuram, Kerala on June 23, 2018. Wikimedia Commons

Chitra Magna, a RNA extraction kit, developed by Sree Chitra Tirunal Institute for Medical Sciences and Technology (SCTIMST), an ‘Institution of National Importance’ under the Union Science and Technology Department, for isolating RNA (ribonucleic acid) from swabs for Covid-19 tests is ready for rollout.

It will be launched at by SCTIMST at a function here on Thursday. The innovative technology of Chitra Magna has been transferred to Agappe Diagnostics, Ernakulam.


The firm has the Chitra Gene LAMP-N technology, which uses RT-LAMP for identification of the N gene of SARS-COV-2. It’s a potential confirmatory test with accuracy matching RT-PCR in its initial validation at the National Institute of Virology, Pune, by the Indian Council of Medical Research (ICMR).


The protocol for the kit uses magnetic nanoparticles to capture and concentrate the RNA from the patient sample. (Representational Image). Pixabay

Also Read: Commute to Work by Walking, Cycling Instead of Car to Reduce Early Death Risk

The protocol for the kit uses magnetic nanoparticles to capture and concentrate the RNA from the patient sample. It’s of significant advantage because even if some viral RNA disintegrates during storage and transportation of the samples, all of it is captured by the magnetic bead-based extraction technology.

The present kits cost Rs 300 and are imported. The new one will cost Rs 150. Agappe Diagnostics will manufacture around 300,000 kits in a month, making testing quicker. (IANS)


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"Our focus and USP at Forest Essentials has always been at delivering high quality Ayurvedic products in a sustainable way, with a global appeal.

One of Indi's leading luxurious Ayurveda skincare brands, Forest Essentials, announces its international foray with the London based Lookfantastic.com, Euroe's premium online beauty retailer. The partnership enables the brand to take significant strides towards its expansion globally starting with the launch in the United Kingdom. "Our focus and USP at Forest Essentials has always been at delivering high quality Ayurvedic products in a sustainable way, with a global appeal.

We firmly believe that the time is right for Forest Essentials to expand to the UK, as our first international footprint with Lookfantastic,' Europe's premium online beauty retailer. "The UK audience is well aware of Ayurveda and we are certain that the demand for our Made in India luxurious Ayurveda products, is going to continue to grow multifold, as consumers are today looking for moments of self-care, to feel better in this stressful period and we are well positioned to support this type of feel-good indulgence that consumers are seeking today," says Samrath Bedi, Executive Director, Forest Essentials. The brand's iconic product ranges, across skincare, body care and haircare will be available for purchase in the UK, including the Soundarya collection, crafted with 24k gold.

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Khadi is no longer a dull, drab fabric meant only for politicians' wardrobes.

Khadi is no longer a dull, drab fabric meant only for politicians' wardrobes. A fashion show organised by the Khadi Gramodyog Board as part of the Azadi Ka Amrit Mahotsav to mark the 75th year of India's Independence showcased the use of Khadi in traditional, as well as, contemporary and festive wear. From lehengas in resplendent Khadi silk to western clothes and casual wear, the models on Thursday night displayed new facts of the fabric.

Several well-known Indian designers including Ritu Beri, Farah Ansari, Rina Dhaka, Asma Husain, Aditi Rastogi and Himmat Singh showcased their designs. Gaurav Gaur directed the fashion show with clothes like lehengas, kurtis, kurta pajamas and partywear.

Lucknow's chikankari and silk artisans also participated in the event. A wedding collection in Khadi was the highlight of the show. "The show was based on the concept 'Khadi for nation, Khadi for fashion' and the fabric for all costumes was provided by Khadi Gramodyog Board," said a spokesman. (IANS/ MBI)


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Pat Gelsinger, CEO - Intel

Intel saw its stock tumbling by more than 8 percent after the chipmaker said the industry-wide component shortage affected its PC chip business during the third quarter (Q3). Intel CEO Pat Gelsinger told CNBC late on Thursday that he didn't expect the semiconductor shortage to end until 2023. "We're in the worst of it now, every quarter, next year we'll get incrementally better, but they're not going to have supply-demand balance until 2023," Gelsinger was quoted as saying.


The company delivered its Q3 results with revenue up 5 percent (year-over-year) driven by strong demand in its DCG and IoTG businesses, despite the highly constrained industry-wide supply environment. "Q3 revenue was $18.1 billion slightly below our guide due to shipping and supply constraints that impacted our businesses," George S. Davis, Chief Financial Officer, said in a statement. He also announced plans to retire from Intel in May 2022. In the third quarter, the company generated $9.9 billion in cash from operations and paid dividends of $1.4 billion.

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