IIT Madras Current Affairs - 2019

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IIT-Madras launches country’s first standing wheelchair: Arise

Indian Institute of Technology (IIT) Madras has launched country’s first indigenously designed standing wheelchair named as ‘Arise’ in presence of Union Minister of Social Justice and Empowerment Thawarchand Gehlot at the institute.

About Wheelchair ‘Arise’

The assistive device enables a differently-abled person requiring a wheelchair to shift from sitting to standing position, and vice versa, independently and in a controlled manner. The testing partners for Arise included individual users, hospitals, NGOs, rehabilitation centres and clinicians who provided inputs.

The device was designed and developed by TTK Center for Rehabilitation Research and Device Development (R2D2) at IIT Madras in collaboration with Phoenix Medical Systems.

The project was also supported from foreign countries such as United Kingdom (UK) and moreover, the commercialisation of Standing Wheelchair technology was made possible with support from Wellcome Trust (UK) through an ‘Affordable Healthcare in India’ Award. This award brought together research and manufacturing partners.

Since Arise is a novel, mass-manufacturable mechanical design (one Indian patent granted, other Indian, US and China patents pending), and with Phoenix’s manufacturing capabilities, it will be made available at an affordable price of around Rs.15,000.

Health Minister announces plans to set up National Genomic Grid (Cancer)

Union Minister of State for Health and Family Welfare Aswini Kumar Choubey, announced that government plans to set up a National Genomic Grid, so as to take cancer research to the next level and make treatment viable for people of different economic classes. This National Genomic Grid will study genomic data of cancer patients from India.

About National Genomic Grid (Cancer)

The National Genomic Grid for India-specific cancer research will collect samples from cancer patients from India to study genomic factors influencing cancer and identifying the right treatment modalities for Indian population.

The grid to be formed will be in line with National Cancer Tissue Biobank (NCTB) set up at Indian Institute of Technology (IIT), Madras. NCTB functions in close association with Indian Council for Medical Research (ICMR) and has the capacity to stock 50,000 genomic samples from cancer patients.

The government plans to set up National Genomic Grid in same style as that of NCTB with pan-India collection centres by bringing all cancer treatment institutions on board.

The grid will have four parts, with the country divided into east, west, north and south.