launches operations in India
Cryo-Save Group announced the launch of its India operations
through its 100 percent subsidiary, Cryo-Save India. The Indian
subsidiary has been set up with an investment of €1.8 million.
Cryo-Save Group will scale up its investment to €2 million
within a year of its operation of the Indian subsidiary. Cryo-Save
India is believed to be the only company that does automatic processing
to avoid manual intervention and contamination. The company will be
offering the collection and storage of ADULT stem cells derived from
cord blood. The services will be available across all metros and other
Speaking on the occasion V R Chandramouli, managing director, Cryo-Save
India, said, “We are very happy to launch the Indian
subsidiary and offer our expertise in adult stem cell banking services
in India. A world class stem cell banking service was the need of the
hour for a huge market like India and Cryo-Save India will be offering
this. We are very keen to extend our footprint to India and we are very
excited about the immense market potential for adult stem cell banking
or family banking in India. Cryo-Save India will bring in our global
expertise, best practices and our vast experience to the Indian
“We see a huge potential in the stem cell banking business in
India and we have set up the best-in-class facility with an investment
of nearly €1.8 million to cater to this huge need which is set
to grow manifold,” he further added.
Cryo-Save India is headquartered in Bangalore with a
state-of-the art, one-of-its-kind, fully automated adult stem cell
storage facility. The facility at Bangalore covers 10,000 sq ft with a
storage capacity of 150,000 samples, extendable to 300,000 immediately.
declared as the “Nanocity of India” at the 2nd
Bangalore Nano Event
Bangalore gets another name, the ‘Nanocity of
India’, this was announced during the 2nd annual Bangalore
Nano event in the union on December 12-13, 2008. The event was
inaugurated by Vice President of India, Hamid Ansari.
On the occasion, Government of Karnataka promised to take
every possible measure to encourage the R&D of nanoscience and
nanotechnology, create opportunities for the commercialization of
Nanoscience and facilitate development of small, medium and large scale
industry committed to nanotechnology. In addition to budgetary support,
Karnataka Government has allotted 14 acres of government land for
setting up India’s first premier
‘Nano-institute’ – Institute of Nano
Science and Technology – in Bangalore. This Centre
would be set up under the guidance of JNCASR, with a Rs 100 crore grant
by Government of India from the budgetary provision of Rs 1,000 crore
($250 million) for Nano Science and Technology initiative. Further,
Karnataka Government is also planning to develop a Nano Park and
PM gives Shanti Swarup
Prime Minister Dr Manmohan Singh gave away the Shanti Swarup Bhatnagar
Awards for the Year 2007 and 2008 at a function in New Delhi on
December 20. The winners in the Life Sciences categories are as follows.
Shanti Swarup Bhatnagar
Prize for the year 2007
Dr Narayanaswamy Srinivasan of the Indian Institute of Science,
Bangalore who has made outstanding contributions in the area of
computational genomics, protein structure analysis, modeling and
computational studies on proteins that are involved in cellular signal
transduction pathways. His studies at the whole genome level
have helped to identify remotely similar proteins sharing structural
and functional features.
Dr Upinder Singh Bhalla
of the National Centre for Biological Sciences (TIFR), Bangalore
who has made outstanding contributions in computational and
experimental approaches to understand neuronal and synaptic
signaling in memory and in coding of olfactory information.
Dr Pundi Narasimhan
Rangarajan of the Indian Institute of Science, Bangalore
for his outstanding contributions towards understanding gene expression
changes induced by neurotropic viruses as well as DNA vaccine
The Shanti Swarup
Bhatnagar Prize for the year 2008
Dr Gajendra Pal Singh
Raghava of the Institute of Micobial Technology (CSIR),
Chandigarh contributed significantly in the field of bioinformatics,
particularly in the searching of potential drug and vaccine targets.
Dr L S Shashidhara of
the Centre for Cellular & Molecular Biology (CSIR), Hyderabad
has made outstanding contributions to the understanding of appendage
development in animals. His studies on the underlying molecular
pathways have important implications in deciphering growth control and
Dr Ravinder Goswami of
the All India Institute of Medical Sciences, New Delhi. Dr
Ravinder Goswami is recognized for his significant contributions in the
field of clinical endocrinology with particular reference to
hypocalcaemic disorders. His research work has documented the
prevalence, significance and causes of vitamin D deficiency in
apparently healthy individuals for the first time in India.
O2h wins ERBI award
ERBI’s Innovation in Enabling Bio-Technology Award 2008 was
presented to Oxygen Healthcare Ltd (O2h) at the ERBI Winter Ball held
at Duxford’s Imperial War Museum. This award
recognizes the role O2h has played in developing technologies that
facilitate drug discovery and development.
“To receive recognition for innovation from an organization
that hosts the largest bio-cluster in Europe makes us extremely
proud” said Sunil Shah, CEO and head of business development
who accepted this award from Lady Archer. “O2h was
incorporated in 2003 and we have grown the company organically as
owner-entrepreneurs from business plan.” he added.
O2h, founded by brothers Prashant and Sunil Shah, is a four-year old,
discovery services company. Its 90 employees work from a
client project office in Cambridge, UK and its operations in Ahmedabad
India. The services offered by the company include FTE-based synthetic
chemistry, Medicinal Chemistry, Computational Chemistry, Full services
lab-units and ADME.
Commenting on the award, Prashant Shah, co-founder and COO of Oxygen
Healthcare said, “I am delighted that O2h has won this award,
it is a recognition that drug discovery has become truly global and of
the hard work the team has put into ensuring fast results for our
Govt plans new
legislation on medical devices
The government is working on a legislation to regulate the quality of
medical equipment being marketed in the country, Kapil Sibal, minister
for science and technology and earth sciences said.
Speaking at the inaugural session of the fifth India Health Summit on
the theme “Optimizing Healthcare Delivery in India: A Patient
Centric Approach”, Sibal said the new regulation
will help standardization of the quality of medical devices
manufactured in India.
“Most of the medical equipments in India are imported and the
medical devices industry in India has not grown much. The government of
India is working on medical devices legislation, in order to
standardize the quality of Indian manufactured medical
devices,” he said.
Sibal identified four key areas—R&D in the field of
technology and genomics focussed on target drugging, vaccinations and
innovative solutions, manufacturing and managing medical
devices domestically, delivery of quality human resource and
affordability—as the major challenges before healthcare
Speaking on the occasion, Prathap C Reddy, chairman, CII National
Committee on healthcare and chairman of Apollo Hospitals Group said,
“The task before us is how do we rapidly fill the huge
deficit for quality healthcare, which is inaccessible to many. We
should look at innovative healthcare models, work on standard
definition and working environment for PPP.”
Chakravorty conferred with the 2nd Bangalore Nano Award
During the 2nd Bangalore Nano, M. Hamid Ansari, H.E. Vice President of
India, presented the 2nd Bangalore Nano National Award to Prof.
Dipankar Chakravorty, recognizing his awe-inspiring achievements in the
field of Nanotechnology.
award to Multiplex Biotech
Fertilizer Association of India (FAI), New Delhi, the supreme body of
fertilizer manufacturers, has presented an award for the best
performance in “Production, Promotion and Marketing of Bio
Fertilizer” to Multiplex Biotech Pvt Ltd, Bangalore. Dr GP
Shetty, CMD of Multiplex Biotech has received the award from the
secretary, Ministry of Fertilizers, New Delhi. Dr GP Shetty
was also conferred with “Karnataka State Rajyotsava
Award” for his outstanding contribution to the agriculture by
the chief minister of Karnataka.
Lucknow biotech park
Lucknow Biotech Park was recently inaugurated by the Union Minister for
Science and Technology, Kapil Sibbal. The park buildings were
completed in 2006. Sixteen companies are today operating in the park
out of which five are from abroad. The park is both an incubator and
Tata Chemicals invests
$16.7 mn in biodiesel
Tata Chemicals’ wholly-owned subsidiary, Tata Chemicals Asia
Pacific will invest $16.7 million in Singapore-based jatropha seedling
Tata Chemicals will get exclusive marketing rights for
JOil’s jatropha seedlings in India and East Africa and a
preferential price for seedlings it requires for its own cultivation of
“Jatropha has been identified as an ideal starting
material for biodiesel production for countries like India, because it
can be grown on wasteland. However, the non-availability of good
quality planting material has resulted in highly variable yields from
the cultivation carried out so far,” said Homi Khusrokhan,
managing director, Tata Chemicals.
“Through this JV we would like to access some of
the excellent work done by Temasek Life Sciences on this plant and make
the superior varieties of Jatropha available to those interested in its
cultivation. It also holds great promise for our own bio-fuels
program,” he said.
JOil has been set up by the Temasek Life Sciences, along with
other investors in Singapore. The company will set up tissue culture
labs in various locations, and market jatropha seedlings produced by
using the micro-propagation technology developed by Temasek.
“We are very pleased to be partners with Tata
Chemicals in this venture and are confident that this partnership will
create sustainable and competitive technological solutions for the
biofuel industry,” said Peter Chia, COO, Temasek.