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Nutritional Supplement for adults with pulmonary tuberculosis on a
re-treatment regimen in Vellore District, Tamil Nadu

 

Under nutrition is both an important risk factor for, and a common consequence of TB. It is associated with longer time to sputum conversion, higher risk of liver toxicity, malabsorption of drugs, TB recurrence, drug resistance and also death. A large study of pulmonary TB patients from rural India showed that 80% of women and 67% of male had moderate to severe under nutrition. We propose to give nutritional supplement to 1000 pulmonary TB patients on a re-treatment regimen in the 7 TUs of Vellore district of Tamil Nadu, for a period of eight months. The supplement will consists of finely ground mixture of millets and nuts. This initiative supported by Janssen, pharmaceutical division of Johnson & Johnson Pvt. Ltd. was launched by the Director-In-Charge of NIRT, Dr. Srikanth Tripathy, on 21/12/2016. We believe that a larger number of malnourished and underweight TB patients receiving a retreatment regimen along with ATT will go on to complete their treatment course, resulting in lesser default, higher cure rates, faster reconstitution of body weight, better quality of life and will return to work (normal functionality) much earlier and then those who receive only ATT.

 

 

 

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National Florence Nightingale Award 2016

 

Ms. Shyamala Gopu, Nurse has received the "National Florence Nightingale Award 2016" from the Honorable President of India on 12th May 2016.

 

 

 

 

 

Report on the dissemination workshop on the study titled
“HIV prevention through mobile phone technology among male sex workers
in India”

A dissemination meeting was held at the  National Institute for Research in Tuberculosis (NIRT) – ICMR  on the  5th March, 2016  to share the findings of the Intervention study using mobile phone technology for HIV prevention. The study was undertaken by the Department of Social and Behavioural Science Research (DSBR) in collaboration with Massachusetts General Hospital/Harvard Medical School (Boston, USA). The work shop was attended by around 100 members which included representatives from the state HIV prevention programme (TANSACS), NACO, CBO representatives, MSM community members and representatives from NIRT.

 

 Dr. Soumya Swaminathan,   Director General, ICMR welcomed the gathering and delivered the inaugural address. The importance of disseminating the findings which are key to translating research to policy was highlighted by her. Dr Swaminathan emphasized that impact in public health can be brought only by understanding the behaviour and the need for socio behavioural research.

 

The findings of the study were presented by Dr Beena Thomas (Indian PI) and Dr. Mathew Mimiaga ( US-PI). The findings reflected the effectiveness of mobile phone technology in sexual risk reduction and as a feasible and acceptable HIV prevention strategy. Mr.Vivek Anand-CEO of Humsafar, a community based organisation (CBO) shared their experiences using technology through the internet as another strategy for those MSM who used the internet for risky sexual behaviours. Dr Thanikachalam, the joint Project Director of TANSACS appreciated the study and said that this was an intervention that needed to be advocated as a powerful HIV prevention strategy. The discussions from the floor were interactive and lead by a panel which include Dr Shyamala Nataraj founder of SIAAP(NGO), Jeya from Sahodaran(CBO) and Sankari from Neerankal (CBO). Dr Shyamala complimented the team for undertaking such a challenging study and commented on the professional expertise that the team had displayed in reaching out effectively through an innovative intervention to the MSM hard to reach community.

 

 

 

 

Annual Day 2016

 

The Annual day of the National institute for research in tuberculosis was celebrated on the first august-2016 in our campus. The annual extravaganza started with the usual pomp and splendour .The programme was presided by the Director, Dr.Sanjay Mehendale. Other distinguished members on the dais were Dr.Srikanth Tripathy Sc G, HOD HIV and immunology division, Dr.Mohan Natrajan .Sc F and HOD clinic and special guest Dr. S. Radhakrishna, Retd. Director, IRMS. Dr.Mohan Natrajan welcomed the enthusiastic gathering with Dr.Tripathy and Dr.Radhakrishna delivering succinct speeches on the greatness of NIRT and what is expected of the current staff to maintain its global reputation. Dr.Sanjay Mehendale ‘s speech was the hallmark of the show. His speech narrated his administrative capacity and his love for his staff. It was an in-depth overview of the achievements of the entire institute, the individual accomplishments of nearly each of the scientists and a summary of events that had taken place in the last annual year including the sad demise of some of the NIRT staff including Dr.V. Kumarasami. It was an astonishing and adorable speech thoroughly appreciated by the audience for the meticulous effort. The felicitation of staff who had completed 25 years of service followed suit. Dr.Vanaja Selvakumar was welcomed to briefly describe her newly patented drug-Transitmycin. Dr.Gomathi exhibited her talents as an enthusiastic comparator for the cultural programme that had a fine blend of humour but had important messages to the society. The recital by Ramakrishnan, the dramas by the two teams from bacteriology and department of social behavioural research received a pounding applause. The efforts of the annual day committee and the administration to have arranged for the day with a short notice under the leadership of  
Dr.L. Sekar and Dr.P. Kannan deserves a special mention. Mr. Sankaran, Mr.Asokan , Mr.Rajkumar and Dr.P.K.Bhavani had contributed effectively to the organisation of the function that culminated in making the progarmme, a grand success once again. Dr.G.Narendran delivered the vote of thanks and the programme ended with the National Anthem.

 

 

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“Best Participant Award”

A twelve week Foundation Training Programme for Scientists & Technologists was designed by Indian institute of Public Administration, New Delhi to provide the young scientist a holistic view of the Inter-relationship between Science, Society and Development. Dr N.Saravanan, Scientist C from NIRT is one among the 15 participants from various discipline and geographical region of the country. the programme was planned to develop administrative, behavioural and problem solving skills in order to prepare the participants for future senior positions. The various components of the programme were lectures, panel discussions, workshops as well as field visits. The entire programme was sponsored by Department of Science and Technology, and initiated in the month of 23rd Nov. 2015 and concluded by 12th Feb. 2016. After the successful completion of the programme Dr N.Saravanan was awarded "a best participant" award . 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Workshop on ‘'Pharmacovigilance & Pharmacoepidemiology
in RNTCP''

A workshop on ‘'Pharmacovigilance & Pharmacoepidemiology in RNTCP'' was conducted at NIRT during 4th and 5th March, 2016. The workshop was funded by the USAID through WHO-SEARO, New Delhi through the Model DOTS project.

 

The objectives of this workshop were two-fold – firstly, to gain a better understanding of the ongoing pharmacovigilance programme and the challenges faced by the adverse drug reaction (ADR) monitoring centres in reporting ADRs, and secondly, to develop an operational research protocol related to daily anti-TB treatment in RNTCP.

 

We were fortunate to have experts from diverse disciplines - clinicians, program managers, microbiologists, clinical pharmacologists, health economists, statisticians, public health experts etc. The workshop participants comprised of programme managers representing the Central TB Division, WHO, Pharmacovigilance programme of India, Directors and their representatives from ICMR institutes, Pharmacology professors from Medical Colleges across India, STOs, DTOs, epidemiologists, clinicians in TB Patient Care etc.

 

There were presentations by experts on topics such as, Pharmacoepidemiology, RNTCP's perspective on ADR Management and Pharmacovigilance, Role of medical colleges in Pharmacovigilance, Pharmacokinetics of anti-TB drugs, Pharmacoeconomics and Experience from RNTCP, ART and PvPI centres. ICMR institutes highlighted their role in the Pharmacovigilance/Pharmacoepidemiology and the future directions.

 

Dr Soumya Swaminathan, Secretary, Dept of Health Research & Director General, ICMR emphasised the importance of the Pharmacovigilance programme and the need for ICMR to participate and strengthen it.

 

The participants were divided into groups, which worked on different components of the operational research proposal. Each group presented their component which was further discussed.

 

 

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Vigilance Awareness Week 2015 (October 26 - 31)

The Vigilance Awareness Week, 2015 was observed in the Institute from 26 th October to 31 st October, 2015. This was commenced with the pledge taking by all the staff members of the Institute in the presence of the Director, Vigilance Officer and Senior Administrative Officer. Banners and posters containing anti-corruption slogans were placed at key locations of the Institute, so that the staff were reminded of their role in the fight against Corruption

 

 

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WORLD DRIVER'S DAY: 17 SEPTEMBER 2015

The “World Driver's Day 2015” was first time celebrated in National Institute for Research in Tuberculosis (NIRT) on the 16 th September 2015 that was organized by the drivers of the institution. It was a well-attended function where staff at all levels from scientists, technical and administrative participated with enthusiasm. The drivers had also invited dignitaries from different expertise who participated in making this day a memorable one.

 

This day is dedicated to remember the contributions made by drivers to help improve the quality of life of all citizens. This is a group who are taken for granted and need to be remembered with gratitude. All the speakers expressed their appreciation to drivers and especially drivers of NIRT. Their commitment, hard work and enthusiasm to work was commented on and greatly appreciated. In a research center like NIRT where there was a lot of focus on patients and their follow up for treatment drivers played a major role in visiting patients with different staff of NIRT. This they did with utmost dedication and patience considering the areas they needed to commute and the directions they had to travel to reach the homes of patients and the health centres to provide care for patients. The staff also spoke about the airport and station visits for staff from NIRT, other institutes who were always appreciative of the welcome they received from our drivers. All the dignitaries delivered meaningful lecture on the important role of drivers across the country and appreciated the NIRT drivers for this unique event in providing such a platform to celebrate a day only meant for drivers and valuing their profession. Drivers are the wheels which keep our nation moving they said. The drivers were presented gifts as a token of appreciation. This was indeed a very well organized event by the drivers of the NIRT.

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This annual day assumed greater importance as the Director of NIRT had been recently declared selected as the DG of ICMR.it was a proud moment for the entire institute. This was reflected by the enthusiasm of each of the staff. The organising committee left no stone unturned to make it a grand event with support from a number of volunteers and participants who eagerly came forward to help.

The programme started with paying tributes to two scientist of impeccable calibre. One was Dr.Wallace Fox, the founder director of NIRT and the other was our renowned leader and former president Dr.APJ Abdul Kalam who recently passed away.

Dr.Soumya Swaminathan, Director NIRT, welcomed the chief Guest Dr.V.M.Katoch, former DG, ICMR and Secretary DHR and the special guests of honour who were professors of Chest medicine heading leading medical colleges in Chennai and had been actively collaborating in various trials of NIRT - Dr.Ranganathan {Director,ITM and prof .MMC} Dr.Nalini Jayanthi(Superintendant FAC,GHTM, Dr.R.Sridhar ,Stanley medical college and Dr.Lakshmi Murali ,State Tb officer and Joint director (TB).

Important among the distinguished dignitaries included Dr.Sanjay Mehendale, Director NIE, former Vice chancellor Madras university Dr.S.P. Thyagarajan, Former DIC of NIRT Dr.Aleyamma Thomas, Dr.Mahil Maran, Prof of Chest medicine, MMC, Dr.Manjula Dutta , Dr. Rema Mathew and various others.

The Chief Guest Dr.V.M.Katoch inaugurated the automated system for registration of patients enrolled in clinical trials and sputum sample collection and also the video conferencing facility which was fully upgraded in Madurai, as part of the agenda.

The Chief guest and the Director applauded the contribution of Madurai staff and announced that Dr.E.Thiruvalluvan Sc.B, was the recipient of the award for completion of 25 years of meritorious service for the year 2014-15 in the presence of other dignitaries, using the video conferencing facility that was inaugurated.

The basic theme of all the speakers was similar; the changing face of NIRT – what is expected of NIRT in the current research world and what will be the future/ guiding role of NIRT to India and to the world at large. All the speakers spoke about the important achievements of NIRT and the evolution of the centre over the years.

This was followed by a scintillating display of cultural programmes which blended TB awareness information and public enjoyment.

Dr.Mohan Natrajan, HOD of the clinic delivered the vote of thanks and the entire staff whose
co-operation had made it a grand success. 

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NASI-Scopus Award for Medicine for 2014

This was an annual competition organised by the National Academy of Medical Sciences and Elsevier for scientists on nine categories, who pursue their research carrier in India. Candidates with age less than 40 years as on March 2014 with post graduate /Ph D qualification were eligible. Dr.G.Narendran applied for the category "Medicine" . Out of 625 entries , four were selected for the direct presentation and interview at AIIMS, New Delhi. He came out successful in the finals and was awarded the NASI-Scopus young scientist Award which was given by the Minister of Science and technology, PMO-incharge Dr.Jitendra Singh in the presence of Dr.Kasturi Rangan, president of the National Academy of Medical Sciences and other eminent scientists . The mentorship provided by Dr.Soumya swaminathan, other senior colleagues and the research team in the division of HIV-AIDS in NIRT had helped Dr.G. Narendran in achieving his goal.

 

 

INTERNATIONAL YOGA DAY CELEBRATION AT NIRT

The International yoga day was celebrated in a grand manner at NIRT Chennai on 22nd June 2015. As given below two speakers from Krishnamachari Yoga mandiram Dr Nrithya Jagannathan and Mr VC Sundaram from SKY Yoga centre chennai spoke on their vast experience in Yoga and also taught the audience five asanas and breathing excercises. Some of the staff of NIRT who are trained in Yoga had taken pains to train the orphanage children in the nearby corporation school for about 10 - 12 days in the previous weeks. About 20 - 25 of the children performed the yogasanas at NIRT during the NIRT international Yoga day function. They were given small gifts to encourage them.

 

INTERNATIONAL YOGA DAY CELEBRATION AT NIRT
CHENNAI 600 031.

 

To commemorate the International Yoga Day at NIRT, we are having lecture and
Yoga demonstration.

 

DATE                   :   22.06.2015

 

TIME                   :   2.00 P.M.

 

VENUE                :   NIRT ATRIUM ( CLINIC BUILDING )

 

SPEAKER            :   1. Ms. Nrithya Jagannathan

                                        Krishnamachari Yoga Mandiram

                                        Mandaveli, Chennai.

 
TOPIC                  :   "Presentation on Yoga and a lesson on an asana practice"

 

 

SPEAKER            :   2.  Mr.V.C. Sundaram

                                         President WCSC (Chennai City Zone) WCSC Sky Yoga Centre

                                         Thiruvanmiyur, Chennai.

         

Topic                   :   "Yoga for health"

 

   

Yoga demonstration by Orphanage Children

 

 

Participation of the audience in Yoga is encouraged.

 

Dr Sujatha Narayanan

ex Scientist " G "

NIRT , Chennai

 

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