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May 29, 2021 Saturday 02:56:45 PM IST

IIT Hyderabad Ready with Effective Cure for Black Fungus

Technology Inceptions

IIT Hyderabad has announced its willingness to transfer the know how of producing Amphotericin B against Kala Azar and Black Fungus to pharma industry. The 60 mg AmB tablet can be brought to market for Rs 200. AmB is amphiphilic in nature, has poor aqueous solubility and forms aggregates in the system putting stress on renal filtration and causing nephrotoxicity. Researchers in the Department of Chemical Engineering led by Prof Saptarshi Majumdar, Dr Chandra Shekhar Sharma, research scholars Mrunalini Gaydhane and Anindhita Laha found a solution with slower delivery of AmB orally. 

This was done with the objective of increasing drug absorption and reduce aggregation, to lower the drug toxicity. For this, the team has selected gelatin an FDA-approved polymer as an excepient for drug molecules. Further, as gastrointestinal tract contains different enzymes which hydrolyze the polymers, the team has also checked and confirmed the enzymatic stability of tablet in pepsin.  The significance of the nanofibrous tablets is depicted in the enclosed illustration. The main concern with high drug loading was if it imposes nephrotoxicity. To ensure this, the team has carried out a cell viability assay (MTT assay) against human kidney fibroblast cells which illustrated no evidence of cell toxicity caused by AmB as well as a minute amount of Glutaraldehyde crosslinker. 

Dr. Chandra Shekhar Sharma, Associate Professor said, “As the main idea behind our research is to find a solution to serve society. The technology developed, is made free from IP, so that it can be mass-produced and is affordable & available to the public at large.

 The concept is also briefed in a video on our YouTube channel: