NanoSpermviricide Gel : A Dual Acting Aid for Prevention of Unintended Pregnancy and Unprotected Sexual Intercourse Associated HIV

Students of Institute of Chemical Technology, Mumbai , Amit Girishkumar Mirani, Prashant Girish Upadhaya won the award for research project of NanoSpermviricide Gel : A Dual Acting Aid for Prevention of Unintended Pregnancy and Unprotected Sexual Intercourse Associated HIV. They carried their research work under guidance of Dr. Vandana B Patravale.

Prevention of HIV infection and unintended pregnancy has become a worldwide priority to reduce the health burden in women. Currently, various physical and chemical barriers are available in the market to serve this purpose individually, however, none of the simultaneous intervention approaches exists in the market with very few under clinical investigation. We propose novel “NanoSpermViricide Gel” for simultaneous prevention of HIV-1 infection and unintended pregnancy. NanoSpermViricide Gel is a combination of HIV-1 inhibitor (Tenofovir disoproxil fumarate) with non-hormonal contraceptive (Quercetin) loaded in o/w microemulsion. Tenofovir disoproxil fumarate (TDF) curbs nucleotide reverse transcriptase enzyme while Quercetin downregulates p24 antigen production and HIV-1 entry inhibition. Additionally, Quercetin exerts both systemic and local contraceptive activity by decreasing the Ca+2 ATPase. The TDF and Quercetin was loaded in o/w microemulsion and was gelled using optimized concentration of Carbopol (1% w/w) to form a NanoSpermViricide gel with globule size in the range of 20-50nm. The developed gel exhibited slow release profile (Coitus independent behaviour), thereby improving the consumer compliance. The in vitro anti-HIV activity assessed using β-galactosidase assay indicated 6times increase in anti-HIV activity of TDF + Quercetin loaded o/w microemulsion (IC50 0.0052µM) as compared to Quercetin loaded o/w microemulsion (IC50 0.030 µM). Similarly, the in vitro spermicidal activity revealed that the 100x dilution of combination TDF + Quercetin o/w microemulsion based gel exhibited 10 times increase in inhibition of sperm motility as compared to conventional quercetin and combination gel formulation. The results ensure the enhanced efficacy by dual mechanism of action of developed NanoSpermViricide Gel to cater to the increasing social burden instigated due to HIV infection and unintended pregnancies, especially in developing nations.

The Hon’ble President of India, Shri Ram Nath Kovind awarded the Gandhian Young Technological Innovation (BIRAC – GYTI) Award to Amit Girishkumar Mirani, Prashant Girish Upadhaya, Institute of Chemical Technology, Mumbai at the GYTI 2018 Awards function held at Rashtrapati Bhawan on March 19, 2018.

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