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The MoU signing ceremony L>R Dr.Samuel JK Abraham (NCRM), H.E. Mr. Hyosuke Yasui,The consul general of Japan at Mumbai, Hon'ble Shri. R.R. Patil, The Deputy Chief Minister of Maharashtra, & Dr. S. Natarajan (Aditya Jyot)
On the 06th Feb-06, NCRM signed a Memorandum of Understanding with Mumbai based Aditya Jyot Eye Hospital for a collaborative research on Retinal stem cells in the presence of the Deputy Chief Minister of Maharashtra Hon`ble R.R. Patil, His excellency the Consul general of Japan at Mumbai Mr. Hyosuke Yasui, in the formers chamber.

Age related macular degeneration (ARMD) and Retinitis Pigmentosa are diseases affecting the retina and each eventually jeopardizing the vision of 5 Lakhs of people in India, with no definitive treatment of cure as of now. It has been reported

that in the mammalians including human cadavers, retinal stem cells are found in certain portions of the eye which can be used to regenerate the damaged retinal cells when engineered in the laboratory and implanted into the eye. Though the same have been proven in the animals, neither research publications nor clinical reports are available on the same in human beings. Major obstacles to such treatment being the difficulty in engineering the retinal stem cells in the laboratory due to non-availability of suitable substrates and difficulty in implanting them in the eye due to dependency on animal proteins for such tissue engineering, which when implanted could lead to rejection.

Nichi-In Centre for Regenerative Medicine, Chennai, headed by Dr Samuel JK. Abraham, a Cardiothoracic surgeon, attached to the Yamanashi University Hospital, Japan having been working in tissue engineering of stem cells and related technology in association with Japanese universities and laboratories, have got the strength of several technology, materials and processing methodologies in overcoming several obstacles mentioned above are now joining with Aditya Jyot Eye hospital, Mumbai, headed by Dr. S. Natarajan, a third generation ophthalmologist and specialist in the surgical treatment of Retinal and Vitroeus diseases.


Dr.S.Natarajan (Aditya Jyot) & Dr Samuel JK. Abraham (NCRM) jointly addressed the press after the MoU signing.


The collaborative research is likely to take a minimum of 12 months and further renewable when successful, is hopeful of yielding a definitive solution to the above mentioned problems of the Retina. Prof. Mori Yuichi and Dr Yoshioka Hiroshi of Waseda University, Tokyo, Japan would function as advisors in the project.

To our knowledge this is likely to be the first such research project in the country. Earlier NCRM has already filed an international patent on an invention jointly with a Chennai based hospital in corneal limbal stem cells and have also been working on areas such as Liver failure and Autologous Immune Enhancement Therapy for cancer




  The ceremony of signing the MoU was attended by Dr. Rateulus, Director Nehru Science Centre Mumbai, (Left extreme) Mr.Sushil Jiwarajka (2nd from left), Chairman, Western Regional Council of FICCI (Federation of Indian Chamber of Commerce and Industry) Maharashtra Chapter, and Mrs. Priti Natarajan, (Extreme Right) Managing Director, Aditya Jyot Eye Hospital Pvt Ltd  
*"Nichi" stands for Japan and "In" stands for India. This institute started on an Indo-Japan collaboration now has spreaded further with global alliances
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