Indian Startup Detects Early Stage Cancer With A Blood Test

Indian Startup Detects Early Stage Cancer With A Blood Test

A specialised molecular diagnostic startup, Tzar Labs along with Mumbai-based Epigeneres Biotechnology, has made a breakthrough in early-detection of cancer. Let’s see how they did this by using just a simple blood test on the given subjects.

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What Is Its Accuracy?

The discovery enables the detection of early stage cancer and the stage of the disease from a simple blood test with virtually 100% accuracy.

As per Tzar

Has A Trial Been Done?
Yes. A clinical study on detecting cancer of 1000 subjects has been conducted and a peer-reviewed paper by the startup Tzar has been published in Stem Cell Reviews and Reports (SCRR).

How Did They Do It?
The tech can detect organ-level RNA mutations directly from the blood. They researched on marker genes and found the key indicators of cancerous conditions at the molecular level.

What Is The Test Called?
The test is called the HrC test.

We can also safely rule out the risk of cancer for the following year if your HrC marker falls in the safe zone. We envisage a world where one needs to do the HrC test once a year, and we will catch cancer either at stage 1 or prior.

Ashish Tripathi, CEO of Tzar

How Deadly Is Cancer?
The disease accounts for one in every six deaths worldwide, as per the American Cancer Society. It kills more people every year than HIV-AIDS, tuberculosis and malaria combined.

What Are The Numbers?
In 2017, an estimated 17 million cases of cancer were diagnosed, and 9.5 million people died of the disease. By 2040, the figures are expected to reach 27.5 million new cases and 16.3 million cancer deaths.

Leading Cancer Case Types In India

Indian States With Highest Cancer Prevalence

Curiopedia
  • Mumbai-based nanotech scientist Vinay Kumar Tripathi and his family are majority shareholders in both companies. Tripathi’s youngest son is the best-selling author Amish Tripathi, best known for the series Shiva Trilogy. 
  • James P. Allison and Tasuku Honjo won the 2018 Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine “for their discovery of cancer therapy by inhibition of negative immune regulation”. Their work was around cancer immunotherapy, which has been used as an alternative for surgery, chemotherapy and radiation.
  • The Indian Cancer Research Centre was established in 1952. It then got combined with The Tata Memorial Hospital which is now more popularly known as the Tata Memorial Centre.

How Is India Inc Helping The Nation Fight Covid?

How Is India Inc Helping The Nation Fight Covid?

While India is grappling with the second wave of Covid 19, Indian Corporate is stepping up and contributing to tackle it. In the past year, major aid came on social and humanitarian grounds. Whereas in 2021, funds are utilized to support the infrastructural demand. From big business houses to niche startups, each firm is donating its bit. Let’s look at some of them.

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In one of the most unprecedented times, the Corporate India is stepping up to support not only its employees but also other people. Let’s see how from conglomerates to startup, many companies are doing their bit to tackle Covid-19.

Startups To The Rescue

  • Paytm will continue to pay salary for the current fiscal to the families of its 8 employees who succumbed due to Covid.
  • Zomato will provide 100% of the income to the family of the deceased employees for 2 years.
  • Flipkart will give paid Covid Care Leave of 28 calendar days in case an employee is diagnosed with Covid.
  • Urban Company set up Mohit Agrawal relief fund of ₹1 crore in the memory of the company’s Director of Engineering who died due to Covid-19.
  • Byju’s formed a ₹20 crore fund to support Covid expenses of employees.
  • Unacademy raised $1million Covid Fund to avail free vaccinations to employees and educators.

Infrastructural Aid

  • JSW Steel is supplying 1000 MT of oxygen per day and plans to ramp it further.
  • Reliance Industries is supplying 700 MT of oxygen per day and plans to scale it up to 1000 MT/day.
  • Amazon India airlifted 8,000 oxygen concentrators and 500 bi-level positive airway pressure (BiPAP) machines from Singapore.
  • ITC Ltd airlifted 24 cryogenic ISO containers, 20 tonnes each from Asian countries. It is also setting up a 200 bed medical facility in Kolkata.
  • Adani Group imported 4 cryogenic tanks with 80 MT of liquid oxygen from Saudi Arabia.
  • ArcelorMittal Nippon Steel India is supplying 200 MT of liquid oxygen per day to Gujarat. They have also set up a 250-bed Covid hospital in Hazira in collaboration with the Gujarat government.

Financial Aid

Tata’s No Limit Covid Care
Tata Trust’s Chairman, Ratan Tata and Tata Group’s Chairman N Chandrasekaran directed to have no limit in Covid funding. The group and trust have collectively pledged ₹2000 crore to date for Covid Care.

Major initiatives include:

  • Converting 1500 hotel rooms in Indian hotels to hospital beds.
  • Tata Projects setting up labour camps with food and stay facilities for migrant workers.
  • Tata Steel supplying up to 800 MT of medical liquid oxygen a day.
  • Tata Trusts organising medical training programmes for volunteers.
  • Collaborating with Linde to airlift oxygen containers from Singapore, China and Dubai to India.

Curiopedia
  • Shah Rukh Khan is the current brand Ambassador of Byju’s. Former co-founder of Facebook, Eduardo Saverin Invested $1 billion in Byju’s in April, 2021. The current evaluation of Byju’s is around $15 billion.
  • Originally Zomato was known by the name of “FoodieBay”. The name of Zomato is a wordplay around the word Tomato.
  • Flipkart was founded by former Amazon employees Sachin and Binny Bansal in October 2007. In 2018, Walmart bought 77% stake in Flipkart for $16 Billion.

Investment Profiling Of Tiger Global Management

Investment Profiling Of Tiger Global Management

It’s raining unicorns, in literal sense! In just 4 months of 2021, India made a breakthrough of getting 13 unicorns. The Indian startup ecosystem is home to approximately 38,815 active startups and dwells over 5,694 active investors. But what is more intriguing is that one of the leading investors in these startups is the Tiger Global Management.

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About Tiger Global Management (TGM)
The American investment firm first came in India in 2006-07 and invested in Make My Trip, Just Dial, Future Group, etc. However, it shut its operations in 2009. A year later under the leadership of Lee Fixel, TGM invested in e-commerce platforms Flipkart and Myntra.

TGM’s Investment In Major Indian Startups
As per Venture Intelligence, total investments in the Indian startup ecosystem in just Q1 of 2021 hit a two-year high of $4.2 billion, 40% higher than Q1 of 2020. TGM has invested in 21 Indian Unicorns which is almost 50% of the total unicorns that India dwells. Of the 13 unicorns of 2021, TGM has invested in 7 of them.

TGM Investment In India

But Who Is The Driving Force Behind It?
Tiger Global Management (TGM) is a New York based investment fund focused on the global internet, software, fintech and consumer firms. It was founded in 2001, by Chase Coleman III who was a former technology analyst at Julian Robertson-owned hedge fund Tiger Management.

In 2000, when Robertson shutdown Tiger Management, he handed Coleman with over $25 million to manage, giving birth to Tiger Global Management. TGM was also an early investor in Facebook and LinkedIn. As of 2020, TGM’s assets under management amounted to $50 billion.

Curiopedia
  • From the period of 2007 to 2017, according to the Preqin Venture Report, Tiger Global raised the highest amount of capital amongst venture capital firms.
  • In 2020, Tiger Global earned its investors $10.4 billion, more than any other hedge fund on the annual list of the top 20 managers compiled by London fund-of-funds firm LCH Investments.
  • The sociologist Alfred W. Jones is credited with coining the phrase “hedged fund” and is credited with creating the first hedge fund structure in 1949. Jones referred to his fund as being “hedged“, a term then commonly used on Wall Street to describe the management of investment risk due to changes in the financial markets.

Understanding Startups And The Benefits They Get In India

Understanding Startups And The Benefits They Get In India

India reportedly has world’s third largest startup ecosystem. Moreover, it is expected to be a home to 50 unicorns by end of 2021. Doesn’t it sound amazing? Well, if you aspire to become an entrepreneur one day, India is definitely heading towards becoming a great place for startups. Read the story to know how you can be a part of it.

Crux of the Matter

What Are Startups?
Before actually getting into all the methodological work let us understand what makes a startup different from any normal business.
As reported by Forbes “Startups are young companies founded to develop a unique product or service, bring it to market and make it irresistible and irreplaceable for customers.”. Thus, startups are ought to be disruptive.

3 Things Essential To Qualify As A Startup In India

  1. Your firm should be registered in India up to 10 years from its date of incorporation.
  2. Business’s annual turnover shall not exceed ₹ 100 crore for any of the financial years.
  3. The startup entity could be a private company, limited liability partnership or a partnership firm.

Moreover, an Indian Startup should be working towards innovation, development or improvement of existing products and a scalable business model with a high potential of employment generation or wealth creation.

What Is Startup India?
With the Motive of availing a conducive entrepreneurial culture in India, Start Up India was launched in January 2016 by the GOI

Benefits That Startups Get Over Other Businesses
Tax Holiday
Startups get exemption from paying Income Tax for a period of 3 years from the date of incorporation. The only requirement is getting a Inter-Ministerial Board Certificate to avail the benefit

IP Filings Cost Reduction
There has been an 80% reduction in the cost of filing Patents, with startups bearing only statutory fees.

Quick Exits
The liquidation and winding up of a startup shall not exceed more than 90 days of application filing.

Incentives to Invest
Individuals investing their capital gains in ventures set up by government will get tax exemptions from Capital gains. These benefits boost investor confidence in Venture Capitalists and thus make the required money flow available.

Some Startup Stats

  • There were 40,000 active startups in 2020.
  • $63 billion was raised between 2014-2019.
  • Average time taken by Indian Startups to reach Unicorn Stage was 7 years.
  • Bangalore ranked as one of the world’s five fastest growing startup cities.

Read more: A Look at India’s Defence Startups

Curiopedia
  • In 1994, Amazon was started as Cadabra Inc. Bezos also considered naming the online store, relentless.com
  • Uber was founded in 2009 by Garrett Camp and Travis Kalanick as Ubercab. However, they changed its name to Uber in 2011 after complaints from San Francisco taxicab operators.
  • Started in 1999, India’s first e-commerce website is Fabmart.com.

Understanding Tech Behind India’s Defence Startups

Understanding Tech Behind India's Defence Startups

Indian startup ecosystem is leveraging technologies like drones, imaging systems and IoT based laser walls for strengthening the nation’s military while achieving the vision of Aatmanirbhar Bharat or self-reliant India. Let’s understand the tech behind some of the interesting defence systems developed by these startups.

Crux of the Matter

Avenger UC of Tonbo Imaging
EO (Electro-Optical) systems are imaging systems used for military applications. Involving both visible and infrared sensors, they help formulate images of possible threats during the day, light or low light conditions.

Avenger UC is one such EO system designed specifically for maritime applications like sea navigation and early threat detection in sea or air, via 360° rotation and continuous zoom ability for 24/7 defence operations.

Every UAV Is A Drone But Not Every Drone Is A UAV
UAV or Unmanned Aerial Vehicle is a military aircraft with no pilot on board. It can be either a remote-controlled aircraft (e.g. flown by a pilot at a ground control station) or a pre-programmed flight that is flown autonomously.

Drone is a broader term that refers to both commercial and civilian operations like hobby quadcopter or helicopters with four motors and commercial transportation services like Amazon Prime Air and local emergency service startups.

UAS or Unmanned aircraft systems include the entire system required for advanced drone operations i.e the aircraft, ground control station, and communications system.

Ninja UAV Of ideaForge
It is a lightweight UAV built for Mapping and Surveillance with NPNT compliance. ‘No Permission No Take-off” or NPNT is a software program that enables drones to obtain valid permissions through a digital sky platform before operating in India’s defence arena.

It is also helpful in crowd management i.e monitoring the progress of events where large groups of people gather together.

Big Bang Boom’s Flying Warden
This is a drone that can identify and tag miscreants involved in crimes like drug usage, arson, petty theft, spray paint, public urination, etc in regions that can’t be monitored regularly by the police.

Kavach of CRON Systems
Kavach (KVx) laser walls are smarter than the existing laser walls, which are visible because of laser beams. KVx is based on an infrared array that uses thermal images to be invisible.

The walls can alert the nearest outpost immediately about any intrusion attempts and triggers action from a quick response tool (QRT), connected via the internet of things (IoT) technology. In case power goes off, it can be run on UPS for 8-12 hours. The soldier on duty can then assess the threat visually or send out drones to inspect the post.

If you want to know about investments and the business side of these defence startups, check out this story: A Look At India’s Defence Startups

Curiopedia
  • The Fairey Aviation Company was a family of British reconnaissance biplanes. First flying in 1917, its flights were still in use during the Second World War.
  • The drone in a box is an emerging form of autonomous UAV technology that uses drones that deploy from and return to self-contained landing “boxes”. Drone-in-a-box systems have been a focus of interest for militaries as a less expensive and less dangerous alternative to human-led communications, resupply, and offensive missions.
  • A target drone is a UAV, generally remote-controlled, used in the training of anti-aircraft crews. More advanced drones are usually made from large, older missiles that have had their warheads removed.