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Narayana Health, CSIR-IICB sign MOU to initiate Translational Research

Bangalore: Narayana Health, a 6000-bed healthcare conglomerate with presence in 14 cities across India, and CSIR-Indian Institute of Chemical Biology (IICB), a CSIR institute based in Kolkata pursuing research in multiple areas of life sciences and drug discovery, have signed a memorandum of understanding to do translational research leading towards advanced therapeutics and diagnostics.

Under this memorandum, the two organizations will work on multiple disease areas of national interest, ranging from pathogenic infections to oncology, metabolic disorder, maternal and child health. Whenever necessary, the two organizations will jointly raise funds to support the research, according to a statement issued on Thursday by Narayana Health.

“At this time when governments across the globe are finding it difficult to keep healthcare costs under control, such collaborations between leading healthcare providers and pioneering research institutes are of utmost importance since it will dramatically reduce the distance between research to treatment and thereby reduce cost,” said Dr Ashutosh Raghuvanshi, Group CEO, Narayana Health.

He further said, “This is a unique collaboration between two organizations that span across two extreme ends of healthcare – from basic research to healthcare delivery. We are extremely hopeful that such collaborations will lead to the eventual development of affordable therapeutic and diagnostic products, which would benefit the large patient population in India across multiple unmet needs.”

Dr G Suresh Kumar, senior principal scientist, chemistry division and head, business development group, CSIR-IICB, who was instrumental in forming this collaboration, said, “CSIR-IICB has been actively working on various diseases of national interest and have developed therapeutic and diagnostic candidates in areas like Kala-Azar, Asthma, Visceral Leishmaniasis, infectious diseases and various forms of Cancer. In all of these endeavours we felt the need for partners who are directly involved with the patients. The collaboration with NH will fill this much-needed gap in our research. This partnership will help us to better characterize a disease that is prevalent in Indian population, say a new drug-resistant strain of bacteria, and come up with therapeutic agents against it.”

Dr Biju Jacob, who heads healthcare innovations and research of Narayana Health Group of Hospitals, said, “We will co-host a highly specialized team through this alliance to provide the necessary scientific and clinical expertise in administering patient-oriented research and appropriately tracking results. We will add value in this world-class endeavour by creating an ecosystem for clinicians and scientists to work together.”

“Research that takes place at the bench often do not reach the bedside due to clinical considerations that were not envisaged by the researcher. Such collaboration will help the clinicians from NH and the researchers from CSIR-IICB to interact with each other and share their experience,” he added.

Siddhartha Roy, Director, CSIR-IICB, said, “Through the tireless works of Dr Devi Shetty, NH has established itself as an abode for affordable healthcare whereas CSIR-IICB has been serving its mandate for working on diseases of national interest. Synergy between the complementary capabilities of two such organizations is bound to yield results that would benefit the nation.”

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