In a positive development, the Indian Institute of Technology (IIT) Hyderabad has developed nano-fibre based controlled-release oral tablets of Amphotericin B (AmB) to treat fungal infections arising out of COVID-19, Economic Times.
It should be noted that as of present, AmB is an injectable drug. The researchers from IIT Hyderabad have decided to keep the technology free of intellectual property rights. They are also looking at partnering with pharmaceutical players for mass-scale production.
It should be noted that as per IIT Hyderabad faculty member Saptarshi Majumdar, “AmB has poor aqueous solubility and forms aggregates in the system, which stresses renal filtration and thus causes nephrotoxicity (toxic for kidneys).”
Back in 2019, Majumdar and his colleague Chandra Shekhar Sharma from the institute’s Department of Chemical Engineering had released a study that oral nanofibrous AmB can be effective to treat kala-azar, a parasitic ailment that can cause fever, weight loss and swelling of the liver or the spleen. This was a first-ever attempt to fabricate nanofibrous oral tablets of amphotericin B for the potential cure of kala-azar or leishmaniasis.
They have expressed confidence that the technology can be transferred to suitable pharmaceutical partners for large-scale production.
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