Hot Start-up: Crafting bioabsorbable implants for India

In 2006, Dr Ashish Lele, a chief scientist at National Chemical Laboratory (NCL), was first introduced to screws made of a polymer called Polylactic Acid or PLA, used for repairing of torn Anterior Cruciate Ligament


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PLA is a biodegradable biomaterial made from corn, sugarcane or sugar beets, widely manufactured in the United States.

The biomaterial instantly attracted Dr Lele's attention due to its unique properties including being able to be absorbable inside the body and retaining the mechanical properties to a certain time period.

He then introduced this product to Dr V Premnath, another chief scientist at NCL, who has his PhD from the world-renowned Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT). Dr Lele holds his PhD from the University of Delaware, USA.

The product was promising and was sufficiently challenging to stir the enthusiasm between the two, and before long, they teamed up together to develop biocompatible maxillofacial volume filling implants.

Four years later, in 2010, Mr Piyush Joshi, a polymer engineer from the University of Pune, joined them. His expertise helped them to identify the benchmark properties of the product to-be developed, and its economics.


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