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Monday, Oct 21, 2019

Hybrid plaster splint, biopsy gun among 20 new products

The inventions unveiled include a knee-ankle-foot orthosis (KAFO) that enables people affected with polio, paralysis or accidents to walk.

mumbai Updated: Apr 14, 2019 12:18 IST
Sadaguru Pandit
Sadaguru Pandit
Aneesh Karma with his KAFO caliper invention.
Aneesh Karma with his KAFO caliper invention.(HT Photo)

The biomedical technology centre at the Indian Institute of Technology- Bombay (IIT-B) has announced the development of more than 20 low-cost medical inventions, including affordable walking calipers (a type of leg brace) for people with paralysis or polio, a stethoscope that can be used to diagnose patients remotely, a diabetic foot screener, and a portable operation theatre.

IIT-B’s Biomedical Engineering and Technology Incubation Centre (BETiC), which announced the inventions on Saturday, said it has signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) to set up similar centres at Haffkine Institute of Training, Research and Testing, Parel; B J Government Medical College and Sassoon General Hospital, Pune; Grant Government Medical College and Sir JJ Hospital, Byculla and Government Dental College, Fort.

“We are close to creating a first-of-its-kind umbrella organisation with six stakeholders — government officials, medical professionals, scientists, engineers, financial investors, and start-up professionals — to boost the country’s medical innovation industry,” said professor B Ravi, head, BETiC.

The inventions unveiled include a knee-ankle-foot orthosis (KAFO) that enables people affected with polio, paralysis or accidents to walk. The Ayulynk Smart Stethoscope is capable of recording and sending heart and lung sounds of patients to doctors in other locations for accurate diagnosis. The diabetic foot screener invention can prevent long-term ulceration and amputation; the biopsy gun can diagnose samples of a cyst or tumour within minutes, and the hybrid plaster splint can immobilise fractured bones to prevent further damage to body tissue.

“Three of our innovations recently won the prestigious Biotechnology Ignition Grant award of ₹50 lakh from the Biotechnology Industry Research Assistance Council, New Delhi,” said Dr Rupesh Ghyar, senior executive officer, BETiC.

The centre has involved future users of its products in its processes. Aneesh Karma, 36, the inventor of KAFO, is a polio patient himself. A resident of Bulandshahr, Uttar Pradesh, Kamra was only able to study up to Class 12. He came up with the idea of KAFO and was researching a sustainable environment to introduce it when he finally found support at BETiC. He is one of the few innovators, who despite not being a part of the IIT-B, was invited to join the centre and worked closely with other innovators under the guidance of top doctors and mentors. “It was my dream to invent better calipers for myself and others like me,” said Kamra.

Dr Anil Kakodkar, nuclear scientist and Padma Vibhushan awardee, called BETiC one of the best examples of an innovation ecosystem thriving in Indian conditions. “Its unique culture of inter-disciplinary multi-institution collaboration is highly effective in creating medical device success stories,” he said.

First Published: Apr 14, 2019 03:32 IST

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