Renowned clinical, vaccine scientist Gagandeep Kang resigns as Director, Translational Health Sciences and Technology Institute
Dr Kang is the first woman from India to be elected a Fellow of the Royal Society.
World-renowned clinical scientist and vaccine researcher Dr Gagandeep Kang has reportedly resigned as the executive director of the Translational Health Sciences and Technology Institute, based in Faridabad. She let the autonomous health research institute under the Department of Biotechnology (DBT). Dr Kang is also the first woman from India to be elected a Fellow of the Royal Society.
Dr Kang’s tenure was reportedly to end in August 2021, according to a report in the Indian Express, but the 57-year-old scientist requested the Department of Biotechnology to let her go by the end of August.
THSTI was permitted to test for COVID-19 in an extension of the capabilities of Faridabad’s ESIC Medical College and Hospital, the report adds. Researchers at the institute had been working to develop antigen tests to check for SARS-CoV-2 more efficiently, under the guidance of Dr Kang.
A huge statement on the way science is being bureaucratised and mismanaged in India . A big shame, a huge loss.
India’s most formidable virologist Gagandeep Kang quits Translational Health Science and Technology Institute, Faridabad - The Hindu https://t.co/4busFvr4mt
— Amitabh Mattoo (@amitabhmattoo) July 6, 2020
— Sandhya Koushika Lab (@WormlockHolmes) July 6, 2020
Kang’s achievements are many. She is the first Indian woman to have been elected Fellow of the Royal Society of London.
Gagandeep Kang Quits as Director of Translational Health Science and Technology Institute https://t.co/OsgpEatZvH via @TheWireScience
— Neha Sinha (@nehaa_sinha) July 7, 2020
This is so very worrying that a widely respected vaccine scientist whose integrity and commitment is an inspiration to so many, has resigned as head of top-research institute. CMC Vellore Prof Gagandeep Kang headed translational science institute (THSTI)https://t.co/2wKhHhX5sW
— Bobby Ramakant (@bobbyramakant) July 7, 2020
Dr Kang is a medical scientist who has worked on diarrhoea diseases and public health in India since the early 1990s. She is a key contributor to the study of rotavirus epidemiology and the development of a WHO-licensed vaccine against the infection. Kang is known world over for her inter-disciplinary research in transmission, development and prevention of enteric infections, with a special focus on their pathology in children in India.
In 2016, she was awarded the Infosys Prize in life sciences, for her pioneering contributions to understanding the natural history of rotavirus and other infectious diseases that are important in the Indian and global context.
Dr Kang currently serves as vice-chairperson of the Coalition for Epidemic Preparedness and Innovations, a global consortium facilitating promising vaccine candidates for COVID-19. She was also head of a group constituted by the Indian Council for Medical Research (ICMR) and the National COVID-19 taskforce to look at prospective indigenous vaccine candidates out of India. However, this group was disbanded in under two months of its formation, the Hindu reported previously.
Dr Kang is also a Professor in the Department of Gastrointestinal Sciences at Christian Medical College in Vellore.
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