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NAGPUR: Adding another feather to its cap, National Environmental Engineering Research Institute (Neeri) has crossed 1 million testing of RT-PCR samples in almost a year, which is the highest among all regional hubs of Department of Biotechnology in the country. The institute is also carrying out sequencing of the virus to get more data about its variants.

In September last year, TOI reported the Centre appointed Neeri as the hub for all Covid-19 testing centres in the city. Apart from being the designated regional hub, the institute is also serving as the spoke model for the Centre for Covid-19 testing.

According to director S Chandrashekhar, Neeri on April 26 crossed 1 million-test mark, highest in the country so far. As a hub, the institute also provided training to 40 personnel from various labs in and out of the city.
Of the 1 million tests, over 50,000 were carried out using the dry swab technology. As reported by TOI on Friday, Neeri is the only laboratory in the country using this method. Using this technology, the institute has been able to complete tests in record time of less than three hours. Unlike the conventional RT-PCR testing being carried out across the country, the dry swab method eliminates the need of viral transport medium – a liquid which has specific ingredients to keep the virus viable and safe.

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