BENGALURU: Annually, about one million cases of cancer is detected in India, and less than 10 per cent of the population can afford treatment. Dr Rohit Srivastava, from IIT Mumbai, is working on a technique based on gold nano-structures that would offer treatment at just `10,000.In order to continue research on this promising procedure, the scientist is now resorting to crowdfunding and has started a page for this.
Speaking at a session on ‘Nano Medicine’ at Bengaluru India Nano-2017, he said the technology, when fully developed and tested, will help in healing cancer without surgery or chemotherapy. It is among the new techniques to cure cancer being developed and is expected to drastically reduce the treatment cost and cut-off hospital stay. “Many of the patients affected by cancer have to spend in lakhs for proper diagnosis and treatment,” he said, adding that average cost comes around `3 to `5 lakh per patient.
According to Rohit, nanoshells filled with anti-cancer drug and coated with gold nano-particles, are targeted at the cancer cells. Then, the nanoshells are heated to around 50 degrees using Near Infrared Light, causing the shell to disintegrate and deliver the drug at the cancer site. He said that Phase 1 trials were complete and they were preparing for Phase 2 testing of the procedure.
The crowdfunding page — www.impactguru.co — seeks funds to the tune of `7 crore. Forty-five days after the fundraising page was started, they have been able to raise `63,000.Prof Shanthikumar V Nair, Dean, Centre for Nanosciences, Kochi, said nano medicine targeting cancer cells clearly shrank the size of the tumour. “Current search is exploring the possibility of delivering multiple drugs using a single capsule,” he said.