Digging deep for new developments: To harness the wealth of the ocean!

The Government of India on a new initiative has decided to bolster India’s position as one of the leaders in deep sea bed mining and provide a competitive edge for pharmaceutical companies in the development of new drugs.

The Department of Earth Sciences has launched a new programme to harness new beneficial molecules from the sea for “therapeutic purposes”. Launched by the Government as a long term assignment, the programme is spearheaded by the Central Drug Research Institute, with the active participation of seven institutes from all over the country including the National Institute of Oceanography, Goa, National Institute of Ocean Technology, Chennai, Indian Institute of Chemical Technology, Hyderabad and Calcutta University, Kolkata.

The Centre launched the long-term new discovery researches after the private sector players found it difficult to compete in the world market despite having spent upto 10 per cent of their turnover for research.” The new molecules are expected as potential anti-diabetic, as well as those having properties of anti-hyperglycaemic and anti-hyper-lipidemic and are well on their way to being developed by these institutes.

With the expansion and dependent on the sucesses of the programme, a proposal has been made to induct new institutes for rearsch, participation and i. such as the Institute of Fisheries Education, Mumbai, Centre of Advanced Studies in Marine Biology; and Annamalai University, Parangipetta, Department of Fisheries, Government of West Bengal, Kolkata. Two other reputed institutes based in Mumbai and Chennai have been rumoured to help in the development of the anti-cancer drug and anti-HIV drugs.

Main Source: Pharmabiz, February 13th, 2008.

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