Hyderabad a global hub for medical research: Kishan Reddy

Hyderabad, Aug 16 (IANS) Union Minister for Tourism and Culture G. Kishan Reddy on Tuesday said Hyderabad has emerged as an important global hub in medical research to develop new vaccines and drugs.

The minister visited the National Animal Resource Facility for Biomedical Research (NARFBR) being set up under the auspices of the All India Council of Medical Research (ICMR) in Genome Valley here.

He said this centre had assumed significance in view of the medical research being undertaken in Hyderabad for developing new drugs, vaccines, medical devices and food products.

The Union minister interacted with ICMR officials and scientists on the progress in the works.

He said after recognising the need for developing necessary infrastructure to develop new drugs and vaccines, the Central government came out with the idea of building a research centre with world-class facilities.

Kishan Reddy said NARFBR is being developed at a cost of Rs 400 crore with a built-up area of 4 lakh square feet. He told reporters that 60 per cent of the equipment and machinery had arrived for the Centre.

Reddy said the remaining work would be completed in coming days. The facility will provide biotechnology, biopharma, and biomedical facilities at one place for drug and vaccine making companies and research institutes.

He pointed out that the only vaccine testing laboratory in the country is in Himachal Pradesh and in view of the growing number of pharma companies and research institutes in and around Hyderabad, the Centre mooted the idea of building a similar facility here. It was in 2014-15 that the Central Cabinet approved the proposal.

The union minister said the research centre has animal resources ranging from mouse to horse for the research work. This facility is being developed to cater to the needs of not just India but of the world.

He said the facility would be helpful for research by the students at universities and also for preservation of endangered species. He said with the development of the research facility students from medical colleges, universities, other educational institutions and researchers of biotech and biopharma companies will no longer need to go abroad for research work.

He praised the centre for developing 3 MW solar power plant to meet its energy requirements.

He claimed that after becoming Prime Minister, Narendra Modi visited various pharma companies, research centre and vaccine making firms in the country to encourage them.

Kishan Reddy said in the past India used to look at other countries for its vaccine requirements. He cited the example of the polio vaccine.

“Today we are producing vaccines not just for our needs but we are also helping other countries thanks to the efforts of our research institutes and scientists,” he said.

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