AP Minister inagurates stem cell research programme

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Hyderabad, Jan 30 (UNI) Union Minister of State for Human Resources Development D Purandeswari tonight inaugurated Champalimaud Translational Research Centre, a joint venture of the L V Prasad Eye Research Institute(LVPERI) and Antonio Champalimaud Foundation of Portugal.

While the Centre had extended a grant of about one million dollars to support research for five years, the Champalimaud extended a financial support of 1.04 million euros for pursuing stem cell research and therapy for corneal and retinal disorders and molecular genetic and bilogical studies of the causation of certain eye diseases and approaches to their treatment, D Balasubramanian of the LVPERI said.

Ms Purandeswari urged the Institute to put in their best efforts to provide eye sight to seven million Indians of the 45 million people world-wide suffering from avoidable blindness.

Speaking on the occasion, Portuguese Ambassdor to India Luis Filipe Castro Mendes said his country wanted to build a ''vibrant and modern'' relationship with India.

Research would be driven by disorders seen in the patients at the clinic, studying the basic biology of the disorders in the laboratory, and translating the results into possible therapy ie bedside to bench and back to bedside, Prof Balasubramanian said, adding that a team of seven scientists and 20 research fellows and associates would work with over 20 opthalmologists in a five-year programme.


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