Minister of Research and Technology: Unpad’s Cepad Test Innovation Play an Important Role in Handling Covid-19

Menteri Riset dan Teknologi RI Prof. Bambang Brodjonegoro menjelaskan mengenai produk inovasi tes CePAD besutan tim peneliti Universitas Padjadjaran dalam konferensi pers virtual yang digelar Senin (28/12).*

[] The CePAD antigen-based rapid test developed by the Universitas Padjadjaran research team is a nationally acclaimed innovation expected to have the ability to reduce the number of Covid-19 transmission cases in Indonesia.

Together with the GeNose rapid test produced by Universitas Gadjah Mada researchers, CePAD Unpad was introduced by the Minister of Research and Technology of the Republic of Indonesia Prof. Bambang Brodjonegoro in a virtual press conference held Monday (28/12).

“The two innovations of the nation’s children have a very important role in handling Covid-19, especially in the implementation of 4T (testing, tracing, tracking, and treatment),” said the Minister of Research and Technology.

The Minister of Research and Technology explained that CePAD and GeNose are two innovative products categorized as tools for rapid detection of the presence of Covid-19 in humans. Both products are similarly not categorized as antibody-based rapid tests, but each have different testing objectives.

“We encourage this tool to be used in public places so that economic activities can continue but with the application of health protocols,” he said.

The CePAD rapid test product developed by Lecturer of Chemistry at the Faculty of Mathematics and Natural Sciences Unpad, Muhammad Yusuf, Ph.D., and the team functions to perform rapid detection through the Coronavirus antigen test taken from nasal swab samples. This test detects a viral protein with a high viral load early in the infection.

The results of the CePAD test are relatively fast, which is about 15 minutes with a high degree of accuracy. Moreover, continued the Minister of Research and Technology, the antigen test itself has received a recommendation from the World Health Organization or WHO as well as a recommendation from the Indonesian Clinical Pathology Association.

Currently, the CePAD Unpad test product has received a distribution permit from the Ministry of Health since last November 4th, 2020. Several hospitals and health laboratories in West Java have used this product.

The Minister of Research and Technology hopes that the innovation of the CePAD test made by Unpad can reduce imports for the rapid antigen test. “In terms of price, it will also be much cheaper than the PCR test,” said the Minister of Research and Technology.

Muhammad Yusuf added that the level of sensitivity, specificity, and accuracy of the CePAD test was at a percentage of 85%, 83%, and 84%. This figure has exceeded the standards set by WHO for antigen testing, which is at least 80%.

“CePAD products also meet the ASSURE principles which are the criteria for diagnostic tools according to WHO,” said Yusuf.

Yusuf further explained that the CePAD test was developed to mediate the limitations of the PCR test as the gold standard in the detection of Covid-19. On the other hand, the results from the PCR test take a long time to come out, so the CePAD product is expected to shorten the waiting period.

Because it is able to detect the virus when its viral load is high, the CePAD test is able to detect people who are susceptible to transmitting the Coronavirus to other people. “So it is hoped that it will be able to reduce the transmission of Covid-19,” he added.

Currently, the development of CePAD test products has collaborated with two industrial partners, namely Tekad Mandiri Citra and Indonesian Biomedical Experts for research and production with a capacity of 500 thousand per month. Besides, the team also collaborated with PT. West Java UBJ regarding the development of the CePAD portal for the tracing process. *

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