Metropolis Healthcare, HaystackAnalytics launch NEXTGEN TB

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Metropolis Healthcare has launched NEXTGEN TB, whole-genome sequencing of tuberculosis utilising the Next Generation Sequencing (NGS) platform for rapid identification of drug resistance in TB patients and providing genotypic level information on drug-resistant genes for up to 18 Anti – TB antibiotics.

Partnering with HaystackAnalytics (start-up incubated at SINE, IIT Bombay), Metropolis Healthcare plans to offer this test in Sri Lanka, Mauritius, the UAE, Kenya, Zambia, Ghana, Tanzania as well as three other African countries to help their fight against tuberculosis.

The 18 drugs covered are Streptomycin, Isoniazid, Rifampicin, Ethambutol, Pyrazinamide, Kanamycin, Amikacin, Capreomycin, Ofloxacin, Moxifloxacin, Gatifloxacin, Ethionamide, Para-amino salicylic acid, Linezolid, Clofazimine, Bedaquiline, Pretomanid, and Delaminid.

NEXGEN TB has a better turnaround time with much faster and reliable results. Additionally, any novel drug resistance genetic mutations can be identified by whole-genome sequencing using NGS.

Ameera Shah, Promoter and MD, Metropolis Healthcare, “It’s an honour to partner with homegrown start-up, HaystackAnalytics to help launch NEXTGEN TB, as its need has become essential to this world. With TB being around long enough for everyone to know how lethal it could be, it is a sheer moment of pride to be able to launch such a test as we hope this could help us cope through the silent pandemic which has been smouldering against us for so many years.”

Dr Niranjan Patil (MD, Microbiology), Scientific Business head- Infectious diseases, Microbiology & Molecular biology- Head & Biosafety officer, Metropolis Healthcare said, “Whole-genome sequencing-based tests such as Nextgen TB not only identifies the TB species involved & in one go it helps reduce the time for performing anti TB drug susceptibility from weeks to just seven to 10 days thus saving crucial time for initiation of evidence-based treatment regimens as well as complementing the TB culture-based tests. It also helps to identify any novel mutations responsible for TB drug resistance which is an added advantage.”