AIIMS has developed a diagnostic test with high sensitivity and specificity for TB meningitis

A team led by Prof. Jaya Sivaswami Tyagi from the Department of Biotechnology at All India Institute of Medical Sciences (AIIMS) has developed the diagnostic test for TB meningitis with nearly 100% sensitivity and about 91% specificity. The diagnostic test is based on a derivative of a DNA aptamer that shows high binding affinity in the nanomolar range and high specificity to a TB antigen (HspX). The performance of the diagnostic test was evaluated in 87 cerebrospinal fluid samples obtained from paediatric subjects. The currently used diagnostic methods of microscopy and culture of cerebrospinal fluid are with huge limitations in terms of sensitivity and time (up to 8 weeks). Even GeneXpert has only 55% sensitivity. The introduced diagnostic test for TB meningitis has been patented by AIIMS and Translational Health Science and Technology Institute (THSTI) and licensed to AptaBharat Innovation Pvt Limited.

Dindigul district administration has proposed to conduct Kodai festival in the month of August

The Dindigul district administration has proposed to conduct Kurinji flower, Kodai festival in the month of August. The Kurinji flower, which blossoms once in 12 years in Kodaikanal, Yercaud and Nilgiris would be showcased. The Department of Tourism, in association with the Horticulture team and NGOs, conducts this fest by taking the visiting tourists to these spots. It aims to make the people understand the significance of Kurinji flowers through innovative means.

Vice President M. Venkaiah Naidu pitches for diversifying agriculture to improve nutrition level of food crops

Vice President M. Venkaiah Naidu pitched for diversifying food production by moving away from mono-cropping of major cereals, to a system that integrates a variety of food items including small millets, pulses, fruits, and vegetables. He was inaugurating the National Consultation on Leveraging Agriculture for Nutrition at the MS Swaminathan foundation in Chennai yesterday. The pulses cultivation will not only help in improving nutrient-rich food production but also in restoring nutrient value to the soil. He will also reduce the import burden of nearly six million tonnes of pulses.

Egypt beat England to win boy’s title at WSF-World Junior Squash team championship

Egypt defeated England, 2-0 to win the boy’s title at the WSF-World Junior Squash team championship in Chennai. Egypt’s Marwan Tarek, who lost the individual championship final, defeated Nick Wall of England in straight games. The first game saw Tarek poised to win easily before Wall fought back to 10-all. The Egyptian, however, snatched it on extra points and rode the momentum to seal the tie. In the second match, Omar El Turkey overcame a stiff challenge from Sam Todd in the first game before running away with the next two to clinch the top prize. The Czech Republic and the US finished third and secured the bronze medal. Host India finished 11th overall.

FSSAI sealed an edible oil manufacturing unit under the suspicion of adulteration

Food Safety and Standards Authority of India (FSSAI) sealed an edible oil manufacturing unit near Kinathukkadavu in Coimbatore under the suspicion of adulteration. The unit was sealed with 64,774 litres of edible oil worth Rs.70 lakh. Five samples of edible oils have been collected for analysis in the Government laboratory. The company manufactured edible oils in three types namely coconut oil, sunflower oil, and blended vegetable oil and selling them under six brand names.

The two, Made in India, tank engines were handed over to the Army

Defence Minister Nirmala Sitharaman handed over two types of indigenously built high-power multi-fuel tank engines to Vice-Chief of Army Staff Lt. Gen. Devraj Anbu. The engines, V-46-6 and V92S2, can power up the tanks – T-72 Ajeya and T-90 Bhishma. This making of fully indigenized engines, for the first time, is under the Center’s ‘Make in India’ programme. It was produced by the Engine Factory Avadi (EFA), a unit of Ordnance Factory Board. The EFA has manufactured more than 12,000 engines since its inception in 1987 for the Indian Army.

EIL has lunched Electric Vehicle charging and battery swapping infrastructure initiative

Essel Infraprojects Ltd, (EIL) has launched Electric Vehicle charging and battery swapping infrastructure initiative under Essel Green Mobility Limited in Lucknow. Essel Infraprojects is planning to invest Rs.1,750 crore on this project. Under the project, EIL has initiated 250 charging stations, 1,000 battery swapping stations in 20 cities of Uttar Pradesh. EIL will also invest in the deployment of 25,000 e-rickshaws simultaneously. This will create around 50,000 job opportunities.

Government to introduce DigiYatra for air passengers

Government is in the process to introduce Digiyatra facility to enhance the experience of air passengers. It will be one among the Digital India programme that is coordinated by the Ministry of Civil Aviation. The aim is to reduce the queues at airports and bring efficiency to the boarding process. It is to place Indian Aviation amongst the most innovative aviation networks in the world. In this facility, the image of the passenger will be captured as he/she enters the airport, and then the passenger will be able to go through the full lifecycle of the travel in a hassle-free manner. To access this facility one needs to enrol into DigiYatra program through AirSewa app. The DigiYatra programme will be launched at airports in Bengaluru, Hyderabad, Kolkata, Varanasi and Vijayawada.

Sourabh Verma won Russian Open Badminton Trophy

Ace Indian shuttler Sourabh Verma won the Russian Open Badminton trophy at Vladivostok. Sourabh won the Chinese Taipei Masters in 2016 and finished runners-up at Bitburger Open the same year. In Mixed Doubles, the pair of Rohan Kapoor and Kuhoo Garg lost in the Final against the Russian-Korean team of Vladimir Ivanov and Min Kyung Kim, 19-21, 17-21.

Bajrang Punia won second consecutive international gold at Yasar Dogu International

Bajrang Punia won his second consecutive international gold and Sandeep Tomar won a silver medal at the Yasar Dogu International in Istanbul, Turkey. Indian wrestlers returned with 10 medals, including seven by women, from the ranking event. In the women’s competition, Pinki gold medallist in the 55kg category with her 6-3 win over Ukraine’s Olga Shnaider in the final. The Olympic bronze medallist Sakshi Malik failed to reach the medal round in the 62-kilogram category.

India plans to buy missile shield from U.S. for USD 1 billion

India is aiming to buy an advanced air defence system from the U.S. to defend the National Capital Region (NCR) from aerial attacks like 9/11-type. The cost estimated for buying National Advanced Surface-to-Air Missile System-II (NASAMS-II) is $1 billion. The buying process has been initiated. India is also planning to buy a very long range S-400 air defence systems from Russia. India is also developing an indigenous Ballistic Missile Defence (BMD) system. Phase-I of the BMD will be deployed soon.

Union Minister JP Nadda launches National Viral Hepatitis Control Program

To eradicate viral hepatitis by the year of 2030, Union Minister J P Nadda launches National Viral Hepatitis Control Program. He released the Operational Guidelines for National Viral Hepatitis Control Program, National Laboratory Guidelines for Viral Hepatitis Testing and National Guidelines for Diagnosis and Management of Viral Hepatitis. The programme has been developed in association with all stakeholders who have worked at the grass-root level and has been launched in accordance with Sustainable Development Goals (SDG), 2030.

India post joined hands to promote tiger reservation on Global Tiger Day

On Global Tiger Day, July 29, India post released a special cover in order to promote tiger reservation at Bandipur. In all, 6,500 covers have been printed and will be made available to the public at a cost of Rs. 25 each. International Tiger Day is held annually on 29 July. It is an annual celebration to raise awareness for tiger conservation. It was created in 2010 at the Saint Petersburg Tiger Summit.

International Army Games 2018 declared open in Moscow

The International Army Games 2018 at Patriot Park in Moscow region was declared open by Russian Defence Minister Sergei Shoigu. Indian teams are taking part in two major competitions– Tank Biathlon event at Alabino ranges and Moscow region and Elbrus Ring competition in Caucasus mountains. The games are being held from July 28 to August 11 at 24 training grounds in seven countries namely Azerbaijan, Armenia, Belarus, Iran, Kazakhstan, China, and Russia. For the first time that Armenia and Iran are co-hosting events of the Army Games. The opening ceremony was attended by Indian Ambassador to Russia, Pankaj Saran along with Indian attaches attended the ceremony.

Mangalores KMC doctors identified a rare blood group called P Null phenotype

A team of doctors, from the Blood Bank of Kasturba Medical College (KMC) Mangalore, came across a rare blood group and identified it as ‘pp’ or ‘P null’ phenotype. Immunohaematology work-up was performed by the team and International Blood Group Reference Laboratory (IBGRL), Bristol, U.K., confirmed it by doing a serological test. This is the first time that the P blood group null phenotype has been detected in India.

Dharmendra Pradhan laid foundation stone of Permanent Campus For NSTI, Women In Mohali

This is the first Nanoscience and technology (NSTI)Institute for Punjab and only one of its kind in India which is exclusively for women. The Minister also launched a unique Pradhan Mantri Kaushal Kendra (PMKK) which would admit differently abled persons as well, also a first of its kind in India at Mohali. He launched India’s first in-phone guide and mobile application “Go whats That” in Chandigarh.

Prime Minister Narendra Modi launched Projects Worth Rs 60,000 Crore In Lucknow

The union government has estimated about 2.1 lakh jobs in the states through these projects. In the event attended by Home Minister Rajnath Singh, Uttar Pradesh chief minister Yogi Adityanath and business tycoons like Gautam Adani and Kumar Mangalam Birla 81 projects are launched in Uttar Pradesh, Lucknow. The ceremony was held to implement 81 of the 1,045 MoUs signed at the Uttar Pradesh Investors’ Summit. By the year 2022, the government ensured everyone will get a permanent house. In order to meet this target, the government has approved 54 lakh houses in the cities and also provided more than 1 crore houses to people in the village.

India into deep ocean exploration

India has allocated Rs.8,000 crore for a deep ocean exploration. This plan will extend for 5 years. The Union Earth Sciences Ministry revealed the blueprint of the ‘Deep Ocean Mission (DOM)’. The plan includes an offshore desalination plant based on tidal energy and developing a submersible vehicle that can go to a depth of at least 6,000 metres with three people on board. Deep Ocean Mission will focus on advanced technologies that will be used for deep-sea mining, underwater vehicles, underwater robotics and ocean climate change advisory services.



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