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Tuesday, November 24, 2020

PGI to get India’s first dedicated animal house laboratory

The Department of Radio Diagnosis and Imaging at the PGI, Chandigarh is installing the first-ever Digital Subtraction Angiography (DSA) facility in the country, dedicated for basic research in animals.

By: Express News Service | Chandigarh | November 18, 2020 2:43:13 am
Chandigarh is installing the first-ever Digital Subtraction Angiography (DSA) facility in the country, dedicated for basic research in animals.(Representational Image)

The Department of Radio Diagnosis and Imaging at the PGI, Chandigarh is installing the first-ever Digital Subtraction Angiography (DSA) facility in the country, dedicated for basic research in animals.

This facility will aim at testing new drugs and hardware that can potentially be used for treatment of human disorders, stated Professor Dr M S Sandhu, Head, Department of Radiodiagnosis at PGI. The DSA machine is a sophisticated digital X-ray emitting machine, which helps in the precise evaluation of vessels inside the human or animal body and displays the vascular system of that particular organ and the blood flow pattern.

Interventional radiologists use this machine for doing angiography of various organs of the body like the brain, liver, kidneys and also of the extremities. The various treatments that interventional radiologists can do is opening blocked vessels, plugging leaking vessels and delivering super selective chemotherapy or radiation to the tumor in the affected organ.

Before coming into the market for human use, all the drugs and allied equipment have to undergo strict checks initially in animal models, followed by human trials in various phases. Currently, due to the lack of appropriate testing facilities for newer devices aimed at interventional treatment of disorders in India, almost all these certifications are done in the USA, Europe, and East-Asian countries. This often involves delay in treatment coming to Indian shores and is significantly expensive due to high import duties. With the setting up of this laboratory, there is a chance that these limitations may be superseded to some extent for some new drugs and equipment.

Other areas where animal DSA may prove useful is in devising minimally invasive interventional treatment of primary and secondary liver and renal tumours, peripheral arterial disease in patients presenting with blackening of the arms and legs secondary to reduction in blood flow due to diabetes, smoking and high cholesterol levels and for treatment of vascular disorders of the lungs and abdomen. Newer anticancer drugs, the safety of which is not known, can be angiographically injected in specific organs of the animals and the response can be assessed thereafter.

The facility will help the institute and the department to set high standards in patient care through concurrent testing of various novel treatments by angiographic means, reiterated Prof MS Sandhu.

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