Will use the company’s Anti-COVID Screening platform to understand the molecular and pathological characteristics of the coronavirus to establish a rational basis for testing potential drugs in vitro
CSIR-Centre for Cellular & Molecular Biology (CCMB) has announced on Monday that it had forged a unique public-private collaborative research effort with Bengaluru-based Eyestem Research Private Ltd in the fight against COVID-19.
Under the agreement, CCMB will use Eystem’s human lung epithelial cell culture system provided as part of the Anti-COVID Screening (ACS) platform to understand the molecular and pathological characteristics of the coronavirus so as to establish a rational basis for testing potential drugs in vitro.
Potential for vaccine development
CCMB Director Rakesh Mishra informed in a press release that culturing the virus outside the human host is a technical challenge that needs to be overcome. “We are hoping that by employing Eyestem’s cell culture system which expresses the key determinants of the viral entry and replication, our research team, led by Dr. Krishnan Harshan will be able to grow the virus predictably and thereby open up the potential for drug screening and vaccine development strategies,” he said.
Eyestem CEO Dr. Jogin Desai informed that the ACS platform has been devleloped by Dr. Rajesh Pai and his team and he was hopeful that CCMB will be able to leverage it to advance the research on COVID-19 to help humanity in India and abroad. “We are honoured to enter into this research collaboration with one of the premier scientific institutes of the country. The ACS platform developed by our team is also a testament to our depth and expertise in cell therapy as well as disease modelling,” he added.