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Nicholas Develops Drug Leads From Antarctica (India)

This article was originally published in PharmAsia News

Executive Summary

India-based Nicholas Piramal India (NPI) is developing pharmaceuticals from the flora and fauna of Antarctica. NPI may be the first company worldwide to develop a full-scale product from there. NPI soon plans to apply for patents for two antibiotics still being designed from live Antarctic microbes; these antibiotics may be useful for treating cancer. "The live microbes in Antarctica exist in less than minus 50 degree Celsius, which prompted us to think of collecting rare species of microbes with potential drug leads," says NPI scientist Swati Piramal. NPI traveled to the continent in December 2005, and to date India's government has led 26 expeditions there. In 2006 researchers with India's Central Council for Research in Ayurveda and Siddha developed two herbal supplements to boost energy from Antarctica, Antarctica Tea and Antarctica Laddoo. (Click here for more
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