Tuesday, August 11, 2020
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B. Pharm, BioTech and Pharm-D students to help in research of covid-19 drug

New Delhi: To extend their respective knowledge in the field, teachers, researchers, professionals and students of computer science, chemistry, pharmacy, medicine and biotechnology are coming together to work for the development of a drug for covid-19.

These professionals will be assisting in the fight against the virus amid the growing number of cases in the country to research and prepare its medicine.

The fatal virus has taken over 17,800 souls in India till now. Presently, the country’s 2,26,947 citizens are suffering with the infection.

“Conducting a research on a drug is a very complex and expensive process. Computational drug design process can be used to complete it in a short period of time, and at a low cost,” Union Human Resource Development Minister Ramesh Pokhriyal Nishank said on Thursday.

“Most importantly, this initiative is for researchers from all over the world as we are also keen to include the international talent in our efforts to find a drug to combat Covid-19,” the Minister said.

The HRS Minister, and Health and Family Welfare Minister Harsh Vardhan together organized the Drug Discovery Hackathon on Thursday to start the action plan.

This launch also saw support of the All India Council for Technical Education and the Council of Scientific and Industrial Research.

The hackathon would be completed in three tracks.

It’s first track will utilize computational models to design drugs or identification of compounds from present databases, which possess the capability to stop the SARS-CoV-2 virus.

For the second track, the volunteers would be encouraged to develop new tools and algorithms using data analytics and artificial intelligence, and machine learning to find compounds such as drugs with minimal toxicity and maximum specificity.

In the third track, only new and unique ideas would be seen and understood through the “moonshot approach”.