Why in news?
Amid the coronavirus pandemic, the Ministry of Science & Technology has established 4 COVID-19 Bio Banks for facilitating Research and Innovation.
About COVID-19 Bio Banks
- The four Bio Repositories under the purview of the Department of Biotechnology are NCR-Biotech Science Cluster (i) THSTI, Faridabad – Clinical samples (ii) RCB Faridabad –Viral samples, Institute of Life Sciences, Bhubaneswar, InStem, Bangalore and ILBS, New Delhi.
- Oropharyngeal / nasopharyngeal swabs, bronchoalveolar lavage, sputum, blood, urine and stool of COVID-19 patients will be collected and archived for future use to develop validated diagnostics, therapeutics, vaccines etc.
- These designated facilities will develop uniform Standard Operating Procedures (SoPs) for sample collection, transportation, aliquoting, storage, and sharing.
- The role of bio-banks for COVID-19 samples would be development of a vaccine and treatments; guidance regarding handling, including nasopharyngeal swabs; and conditions under which the higher BSL-3 practices should be followed.
- The Department of Biotechnology would be supporting these COVID-19 designated Bio-bank facilities through a well strategized future plan so that novel technological interventions can be developed in due course of time.
- These designated bio repositories will use the clinical samples for R&D purpose in their respective Institutes.