Sat. Jan 28th, 2023

IIT Bombay alumnus Raj Nair to fund the construction of a Biosafety Level 3 (BSL3) Good Manufacturing Practice (GMP) Lab at the Institute

IIT Bombay alumnus Raj Nair

In a recent move, the Indian Institute of Technology Bombay signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with its Distinguished Alumnus  Raj Nair (B. Tech., Metallurgical and Material Science Engineering, 1971) and its fellow alumni organisation IIT Bombay Alumni Association (IITBAA) for the construction of a sophisticated Biosafety Level 3 (BSL3) Good Manufacturing Practice (GMP) Lab at the Department of Biosciences and Bioengineering (BSBE). The MoU was signed by IIT Bombay’s Director Prof. Subhasis Chaudhari, the donor Mr. Raj Nair and IITBAA’s CEO Latha Venkitachalam.

Mr. Nair has committed to donate a substantial undisclosed amount to IIT Bombay for this purpose, and also program manage its implementation with help from Ajit Jawle, a fellow alum and expert in GMP systems. Nair has offered to also guide the researchers on the commercial aspects of the go-to-market strategy using his experience as a strategy consultant.

The proposed facility located at BSBE department is expected to facilitate the progression of breakthrough translational research from the laboratory stage to the market by manufacturing materials required for human clinical trials. This facility will be used by the researchers in BSBE and other departments on campus to manufacture nanomaterials, tissue-engineered grafts, CAR-T constructs, drug nanoparticles, etc. for conducting clinical trials. Several IIT Bombay faculty members specialise in these areas and the GMP lab can help shorten the time it takes to get their life-saving solutions to the market. Mr. Nair’s vision for this initiative is that India and IIT Bombay become a place where the output of research will result in bold and impactful solutions for the masses that facilitate a 10X improvement – better, cheaper, and faster – than the existing solutions anywhere in the world, so that thousands of patients suffering from difficult-to-treat diseases will benefit.

Briefing about the partnership, Prof. Subhasis Chaudhuri, Director, IIT Bombay, stated: “There was a critical need for a GMP lab at the Institute’s BSBE department and we are extremely grateful to Mr. Nair for tending to it. Mr. Nair’s donation will serve to further our vision of making lab-produced products easily available in the market and facilitate real-word practical applications that are faster, better and beneficial to the masses. The establishment of this lab is a step towards our stated objective of being among the top 50 institutions in the world.”

Speaking on this collaboration, Mr. Raj Nair said, “I felt that the best way to give back to my alma mater is to raise the level of ambition of the faculty and students drastically by working towards goals that might seem hard to reach for ordinary people. The best way to give to the needy would be to bring to them, highly affordable breakthrough medical solutions to save lakhs of people by facilitating translation research efforts.”

Prof. Rohit Srivastava Head, and Prof. Himanshu Patel, Chair Professor of the Department of Biosciences and Bioengineering at IIT Bombay spoke about GMP Lab being an important addition to the BSBE facility on campus and said, “We thank Mr. Raj Nair for his generosity and his vision of bringing indigenous lab researched products to market through the establishment of this GMP facility. This is a first-of-its kind facility at any of the IITs in India and will help shorten the time it takes to conduct Clinical Trials for products from the Department of Biosciences and Bioengineering and rest of the Institute.”

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *