Abhiruchi Probiotic – the startup that aims to prevent heart diseases
With startup India on the rise there have been many startups, where people have started it varying from astrology to that of the foods, but here is a startup that has come up with a unique probiotic research that aim to reduce the heart diseases with a different touch. According to a report by World Health Organizations (WHO), cardiovascular diseases (CVDs) are the number one cause of death globally, and more people die annually from CVDs than from any other cause. Over three quarters of CVD deaths take place in low- and middle-income countries. Globally 31% pf the deaths recorded accounted for CVD’s according to the records of 2012 deaths, and it measures up to 17.5 million deaths. The most common factor for all those suffering with heart ailments all over the world has been diagnosed as Cholesterol. India is considered as hub for two major ailments diabetes being the number one and heart ailment that follows it. Making a note of this Abhiruchi Probiotic decided to carry a research on this factor Cholesterol. In order to find an amicable solution by finding novel probiotic products that improves the health.
Founder of the startup and people involved in it
It was the 25-year-old Mr Hrishikesh Mungi working at NCL (National Chemical Laboratory), Pune, came up with the idea of solving one of India’s major health threats. Mr Mungi’s father and grandfather were also entrepreneurs who inspired him to actively pursue entrepreneurship since his early childhood. While developing the technology at NCL, Mr Mungi worked hard for a monthly pay as little as Rs 8000. At times he had to wait patiently for months together to receive his salary.
In 2012, after graduating with an Engineering degree in Biotechnology from KLE Engineering College, Belgaum, Mr Mungi was selected to work on a project on the extraction of bile salts hydrolase enzyme at NCL. Soon he realized the commercial potential of his research. His guide, Dr Archana V Pundle, a chief scientist at NCL was the first to point out the research’s commercial viability. With the help of NCL they later applied for patenting their research. With NCL they put ahead a business plan including market survey and future goals for building a commercial enterprise. The research work was selected by BIRAC (Biotechnology Industry Research Assistance Council) for funding the project further through its BIG (Biotechnology Ignition Grant) scheme.
Dr Pundle served as a scientific advisor and non-executive director of this start-up in 2014 with Mr Mungi heading it. Abhiruchi is a technologically-driven start-up, involved in developing novel probiotic products having health benefits. Investments worth Rs 50 lakh has been invested in the company so far. It is currently focusing on developing, manufacturing and commercializing of a cholesterol-lowering probiotic formulation without any side effects on the body. The company has now acquired provisional patent for lowering cholesterol by the application of probiotics. At the moment they are validating the technology, and it’d take another 5 years for the products to reach the market.
Accolades of the Founder!
Mr Mungi bagged the ‘Young Entrepreneur Award’ at Eureka 2014, a business model competition conducted by IIT-Bombay.
Abhiruchi Probiotic Future
Abhiruchi now is looking to collaborate with companies, research institutes, academia and the industry to carry out clinical trials on its products. It is also seeking active partnerships to optimize and scale-up its fermentation process, and diversify its R&D.
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