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Lunch with Pippa Hudson
13:00 - 15:00

[LISTEN] Home grown: Local scientists grow Coronavirus in lab in first for SA

12 May 2020 5:22 PM

The SARS-Cov-2 culture is a collaborative effort between the UWV and Stellenbosch University. Ismail Lagardien finds out more...

Scientists working together from the University of the Western Cape (UWC) and Stellebosch University (SU) have for the first time grown a culture of coronavirus in a high-security laboratory.

We have managed to isolate the virus, which means we have been able to grow it in a lab.

Dr Tasnim Suliman, Post doctoral research fellow - University of the Western Cape

We ended up with a pure culture of the virus that we can use for downstream testing and other experiments.

Dr Tasnim Suliman, Post doctoral research fellow - University of the Western Cape

So how exactly did they grow the virus in the lab? Dr Tasnim Suliman says viruses need a compatible 'cell line' in order to grow:

We took the appropriate cell line, the culture of cells and took the sample from a patient who had tested positive and put them together and incubated it... and we ended up with a pure culture of the virus.

Dr Tasnim Suliman, Post doctoral research fellow - University of the Western Cape

Click below to find out how scientists intend to use the lab-grown coronavirus culture.


12 May 2020 5:22 PM

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