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Karnataka farmers may be first to test anti-pesticide gel

Researchers looking at nano intervention, hence, need to have a regulatory awareness right from the beginning of their study to see higher chances of success.

Published: 04th March 2020 06:01 AM  |   Last Updated: 04th March 2020 06:01 AM   |  A+A-

Express News Service

BENGALURU: The ill-effects of pesticides continue to be a major concern among farmers who are exposed to it on a daily basis. Now, researchers in Bengaluru, who have been working on a skin gel called poly-Oxime for the last four years - developed from a nucleophilic polyme at a laboratory in Bengaluru, are all set to apply to the Drug Controller General of India to conduct their first human clinical study.

Dr Praveen Vemula, assistant professor, Institute for Stem Cell Science and Regenerative Medicine (InStem), Bengaluru, told The New Indian Express that all technical studies including those based on schedule Y protocol (safety and toxicity studies) have been completed. The field study will begin in a year, and Karnataka farmers are likely to be the first to try the cream. Vemula, senior researcher whose anti-pesticide technology Sepio Health Private Limited is manufacturing the gel, was talking on the sidelines of India Nano 2002 conference.

In their interaction with about 200 farmers in Telangana, researchers found that farmers developed acute toxic reactions immediately after spraying a pesticide - fever, diarrhea, vomiting, muscular pain and tremors were almost immediate reactions, Dr Vemula said. The team has also been working on a cloth that will be infused with nucleophiles or pesticide-deactivators for a more optimal cover for farmers.

Dr Amit K Dinda, professor and chief of renal and transplant pathology, Department of Pathology, All India Institute of Medical Sciences, New Delhi, highlighted the need for nano science to re-purpose existing medicines. He said that often, there is a gap between the research outcomes and therapeutic practice --  the materials used in research are not allowed by regulatory bodies due to safety protocols. Researchers looking at nano intervention, hence, need to have a regulatory awareness right from the beginning of their study to see higher chances of success.

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