India’s Karnataka State Launches COVID-19 Convalescent Plasma Study Starting at Bangalore Medical College and Research Institute

India’s Karnataka State Launches COVID-19 Convalescent Plasma Study Starting at Bangalore Medical College and Research Institute

After receiving a national government greenlight, India’s Karnataka state has initiated a clinical trial offer COVID-19 clinical trials in the region in the form of convalescent plasma therapy initiatives to treat severely infected patients. Thus far, India hasn’t’ been hit as hard as China to the north nor the U.S. or Europe but the country’s leadership doesn’t want to take risks and is full throttle to help severely ill COVID-19 patients.

India’s National Regulator Approves Convalescent Plasma Study

Just days ago, the Hindu Business Line reported that India’s Central Drugs Standard Control Organization (CDSCO –the Drug Controller of India) permitted the Indian Council of Medical Research (ICMR) to conduct a clinical trial of convalescent plasma to treat COVID-19 patients. ICMR has apparently submitted to the higher-up government authority of list of research sites keen on participating in the clinical trial—similar in nature to the COVID-19 Convalescent Plasma nationwide study in the United States. This Indian initiative involves an open label, randomized, Phase II study evaluating the safety and efficacy of the use of convalescent plasma in patients with moderate COVID-19 infection.

Convalescent Plasma Studies at Local Sites

Just on Saturday, the state’s Medical Education Minister, Dr. K Sudhakar, along with Health & Family Welfare Minister Sriramulu inaugurated the clinical trial at Bangalore Medical College’s Victoria Hospital. Also present was Victoria Hospital’s Dean—Dr. CR Jayanthi and Dr. Vishal Rao of Bangalore Institute of Oncology who were recently given the greenlight by ICRM to commence the trials.

Dr. K Sudhakar, Karnataka Medical Education Minister, commented on this study, “This is a historical moment for the State and confident that plasma therapy helps serious COVID-19 affected to recover. I have always maintained that plasma treatment is very effective for the patients in critical condition and relieved when we got permission from the Centre for trials and able to commence trials in just 3-4 days as reported in The Hindu Business Line. Dr. Sudhakar also thanked those recovering patients in attendance at the inaugural event that donated their plasma. But for these volunteer donors there wouldn’t be a trial, which commences next week in severely ill patients infected with COVID-19.

The Site: Bangalore Medical College

The Bangalore Medical College and Research Institute was launched as a private Medical college in 1955 by Mysore Education Society. It is run by the Government of Karnataka and located on K.R. Road near City Market. A government run medical college in Bangalore and one of 10 such institutions in Karnataka, BMCRI is an autonomous institution under the Rajiv Gandhi University of Health Sciences, Jayanagar, Bangalore.

The academic medical center includes the following hospitals/providers:

·       Victoria Hospital (1,000 beds)

·       Bowring & Lady Curzon Hospital (686 beds)

·       Vanivilas Women and Children Hospital (536 beds)

·       Minto Eye Hospital (300 beds)

About Karnataka State

A state in the south western region of India. It was formed in 1956 with the passage of the States Reorganization Act. Originally known as the State of Mysore, it was renamed Karnataka in 1973. Its capital city is Bengaluru. With nearly 70 million people in the state, its largest city of Bangalore (Bengaluru) has about 12.5 million inhabitants.

Lead Research/Investigator

Dr. Vishal Rao, Bangalore Institute of Oncology