Harsh Vardhan releases compendium of COVID-19 technologies products developed by CSIR

New Delhi: Science and Technology and Earth Science Minister, Harsh Vardhan on Thursday announced that Indian scientists from the Department of Bio Technology (DBT) and Council for Scientific and Industrial Research (CSIR) have sequenced more than 1000 SARS-CoV-2 viral genomes, making it the largest effort in the country.
”This will help in understanding the prevalent strains and the mutation spectrum in India, which will help in diagnostics, drugs and vaccines,” said the Minister.
He also released a compendium of Covid-19 technologies and products developed by CSIR, which covers a wide range of technologies and products spanning from diagnostics to drugs to ventilators and PPEs with more than 100 technologies, 93 industry partners listed and with over 60 of these technologies have been transferred to industry.
Expressing his satisfaction, the Health Minister said, “CSIR has made significant contributions to India’s fight against Covid-19 on various fronts ranging from augmenting testing capacity to developing novel diagnostics and making affordable repurposed drugs available to patients in partnership with industry”.
The CSIR has developed many hospital assistive devices such as ventilators and PPEs for which a shortage was felt early on in the pandemic. Now, CSIR has compiled a compendium, which captures the technologies, products and know-how developed for mitigation of Covid-19 pandemic,” he added.
Dr Vardhan also complimented the role of CSIR in bringing repurposed drugs against Covid-19 to patients at the earliest in partnership with industry such as Cipla for Favipiravir.
He emphasised that efforts such as these will benefit Covid19 patients by making the drugs affordable.
”The CSIR-IICT has developed a cost-effective synthetic process technology for Active Pharmaceutical Ingredient (API) of Favipiravir using locally available chemicals and transferred the technology to Cipla who scaled up and manufactured the drug based on this technology,” said Dr Vardhan.
The Minister also highlighted the contribution of CSIR- National Aerospace Laboratory (NAL) having expertise in aviation, rose to the challenge and developed SwasthVayu a non-invasive BiPAP ventilator in a short span of 36 days.
He exhorted the scientific community to come together and develop new innovations, technologies and products at this time of need, as ”it is only S&T that can deliver us out of this pandemic and also fulfill the aspirations of Aatma Nirbhar Bharat”.
At the occasion, CSIR DG Dr Shekhar C Mande said that CSIR has partnered with not only large industries such as TATA Sons, Reliance Industries but also with PSUs such as BHEL and BEL and MSMEs for the deployment of the technologies and products at the earliest. Further, he highlighted that CSIR has developed a Covid-19 Portal that captures these technologies in an easily searchable format for users.