Hyderabad

Global cooperation needed to contain Coronavirus: Venkaiah

Vice-President M. Venkaiah Naidu, accompanied by CCMB Director Rakesh Mishra and others, going around the exhibits that highlight the research activities undertaken by CCMB, in Hyderabad on Monday.

Vice-President M. Venkaiah Naidu, accompanied by CCMB Director Rakesh Mishra and others, going around the exhibits that highlight the research activities undertaken by CCMB, in Hyderabad on Monday.  

Periodic outbreak of new viruses highlights our vulnerability to diseases, says Vice-President

Vice-President M. Venkaiah Naidu on Monday voiced his concern over the spread of Coronavirus and underscored the need for global cooperation for early detection and control of the spread of the disease.

The virus strain was spreading rapidly across nations and causing a major concern to health authorities, he noted and pointed out that the periodic outbreak of new viruses not only highlight our vulnerability to diseases but also the need to take steps on a global scale to contain any serious fallout.

Mr. Naidu, addressing scientists and research scholars and others at the CSIR-Centre for Cellular & Molecular Biology (CCMB) at its campus, said: “There are new challenges to scientists with climate change, pollution, new viruses, new diseases, resistance to antibiotics and so on. There have been advancements in science and technology over the years, but we cannot afford to be complacent and sit back on our laurels.”

Modern medicine has been facing a serious threat as many antibiotics might eventually become ineffective and if it continues unchecked, even a common infection could turn into a health threat. Hence, it was imperative to develop new antibiotics apart from preventing drug resistance.

The Vice-President urged scientists to focus more on agriculture considering the difficulties of farmers, so that the production is more from pest/diseases resistant crops giving remunerative prices. He was enthused about the new rice variety, developed by CCMB scientists here in collaboration with the Indian Institute of Rice Research ‘Samba Masuri’, a pest resistant and diabetic-friendly rice adopted by farmers in eight States spread over three lakh hectares and a turnover of ₹2,880 crore.

“I am told the farmers’ benefit is about ₹550 crore. This should be taken to all States across the country,” he said and said scientific research should ultimately lead to improving people’s lives. CCMB has made pioneering work in population genetics, DNA fingerprinting, molecular biology, protection of endangered animals and so on, he noted and wanted it to develop rapid DNA testing kits to detect genetic disorders of rare diseases.

It is providing diagnostic testing and counselling for 35 rare diseases. “It is important to predict and prevent genetic diseases as more than 70 million Indians are estimated to be suffering from genetic disorders and also take up campaigns on a massive scale to create awareness among the people about the health risks associated with consanguineous marriages. The private sector too should chip in and set up a fund to fund scientific and technological research,” he observed.

Labs like CCMB should become global hubs in their respective scientific fields, he felt and called for encouraging young scientists to take up challenging research assignments and come up with innovative ideas. Earlier, he went around the exhibits which highlighted the research activities undertaken by CCMB accompanied by Director Dr. Rakesh Mishra and others.

Why you should pay for quality journalism - Click to know more

Recommended for you
This article is closed for comments.
Please Email the Editor

Printable version | Feb 25, 2020 1:06:26 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/cities/Hyderabad/global-cooperation-needed-to-contain-coronavirus-venkaiah/article30668365.ece

Next Story