UoH-incubated firm gets DBT funding

To develop in vitro platforms for COVID-19 research

Updated - April 27, 2020 08:29 am IST

Published - April 26, 2020 10:33 pm IST - HYDERABAD

Founder-CEO of OncoSeek Bio Pvt. Ltd. Suresh Poosala with members of his research team.

Founder-CEO of OncoSeek Bio Pvt. Ltd. Suresh Poosala with members of his research team.

A startup incubated at the University of Hyderabad (UoH) has been selected for financial support for developing an ‘in vitro lung organoid model’.

OncoSeek Bio Pvt. Ltd. was incubated at ASPIRE-BioNEST located in the university’s School of Life Sciences which provides a plug-and-play life science ecosystem of incubation. The Biotechnology Industry Research Assistance Council (BIRAC) under the Department of Biotechnology (DBT) announced funding support to 16 projects out of 500 proposals received for COVID-19 research consortium and OncoSeek Bio is one of them.

“Current animal models available for research on COVID-19 are either difficult to get into India or create them in time, to address the pandemic. The company envisages creating novel in vitro platforms for the research under the support,” said founder-CEO of OncoSeek Bio Pvt. Ltd., Suresh Poosala, on Sunday.

OncoSeek Bio has a vision to develop in vitro and in vivo platforms for specific diseases for therapeutics screening.

A team consisting of Mr. Poosala, Bharadwaja Vadloori and Shanmuga Priya has been conducting research on cell culture models for a few diseases including cancer. Under the COVID-19 grant received from BIRAC/DBT, they plan to expand the team and enhance the scope of current in vitro platforms to a different state-of-the-art research level.

Under this grant proposal, the company plans to use their novel platform to screen drugs/ peptides/ molecules/ agents/ compounds targeted against the virus or the host cell. It plans to create this capability in the next six months.

ASPIRE manages the innovation and entrepreneurial activities at the UoH through incubation of startup companies.

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