Two Sri Lankan scientists win Silver Award
Two Sri Lankan scientists Manoj Hettiarachchi and Nalin Kannangara of
Emergen Life Sciences were recently honoured with a silver award at the
44th International Exhibition of Inventions held in Geneva for their
innovation of process of manufacturing of Budenoside + Foremtrol dry
powder inhalation medicines. The two scientists, who are alumni of Sri
Lankan universities have also honoured with a Sri Lankan Presidential
Award in February 2016 for this unique innovation.
Nalin Kannangara talking to the press is on extreme left.
Manoj Hettiarachchi is in the centre while company
representatives are on either side. Pic Thushara Fernando
The significance of this breakthrough is that unlike the imported
medications that are costly, the patent process innovated by the Sri
Lankan scientists provide low- cost, easy accessible medications for
asthma and its more aggressive form, (Chronic Obstructive, Pulmonary
disease) also known as COPD. This means that low cost and effective
medication is freely available to Sri Lankan consumers, as an
alternative to the imported varieties that have been the only solution
for asthma and COPD suffers in the past.
Manoj Hettiarachchi and Nalin Kannangara headed a team consisting of
young scientists from Sri Lankan universities, in a state-of-the-art
high tech manufacturing complex equipped with a range of pharmaceutical
testing and production equipment.
"We are proud that this is a truly Sri Lankan achievement", they
Manoj Hettiarachchi, Chairman Emergen Life Science said, "We
identified a noticeable trend in the increase of Asthma COPD and also
understood that the country depended on costly imported medications for
treatment. Our researchers were able to identify respiratory care
medication as a fundamental area of research and were focus on improving
the currently available pharmaceutical formulations."
Asthma is one of the diseases that 20 percent of the adult population
is affected by environmental changes such as pollution which is the main
cause for the increase in asthma in the aging population.