IIT Roorkee develops breath-based cancer detector

In an endeavour to make the non-invasive early-stage cancer diagnosis an affordable reality, Tata Steel’s new materials business has signed a technology transfer agreement with IIT Roorkee for a breath-based Cancer Detector.

The agreement to this effect was signed on 17 October, 2022.

“IIT Roorkee’s team of professors- Prof. Indranil Lahiri, Prof. Partha Roy, Prof. Debrupa Lahiri and researchers along with their groups have developed a simple, easy-to-use breath-based detector (BLO Detector) for early detection of cancer,” the company said.

Talking about the development, Debashish Bhattacharjee, Vice President, New Materials Business, Tata Steel, said, “Tata Steel is constantly working towards fostering a culture of innovation and continuous improvement to drive excellence. We intend to leverage this opportunity with IIT Roorkee to develop and deploy the BLO detector.”

The device, which works on the principles of colorimetry, can detect the presence of breast, lung and oral cancer, the company said.

BLO Detector will be important for screening a large pull of the population, who are susceptible to any of these three types of cancer. A positive result in this test will ensure a quick visit to a doctor for a detailed diagnosis and treatment of cancer, it said.

“This will have a huge impact on increasing the survival rate of cancer patients, specifically of these three types of cancer. The device has undergone an initial clinical test in a Cancer Research Institute at Dehradun, with a sensitivity and specificity of 96.11% and 94.67% respectively,” the company said in a press release.

Tata Steel would further improve upon the design and use efficiency of the prototype on commercial terms, re-evaluate the efficacy in collaboration with Tata Medical Centre, Kolkata and thereafter commercialise the device under Medical Material and Devices, New Materials Business.

The Medical Material and Devices Business Unit of Tata Steel’s New Material Business has a strategic focus on developing novel indigenous & affordable solutions and reducing import dependency in various sectors of Health Technology.

The vertical works closely with academia in promoting translational research from bench to bedside with a focus on India-based manufacturing for the Indian demography.

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