Dr. Kiran Mazumdar-Shaw funds establishment of “R. I. Mazumdar Young Investigator” position at IISc

Dr. Kiran Mazumdar-Shaw, Chairperson and Managing Director, Biocon Limited, has made a generous contribution to the Indian Institute of Science (IISc) to establish the “R. I. Mazumdar Young Investigator” position. This endowment fund will be used to support cutting-edge research in Bioengineering and related areas by bright young faculty members currently at or recruited in the future by IISc.

Dr. Siddharth Jhunjhunwala, Assistant Professor, Centre for BioSystems Science and Engineering at IISc, has been selected as the first “R. I. Mazumdar Young Investigator” for a term of 2 years. His research focuses on a cross-disciplinary effort combining elements from drug delivery and materials science, to study and engineer the immune system.

“It is an honour to be chosen as the first awardee,” said Dr. Jhunjhunwala. “I am grateful for the support extended, as it will enable us to expand our ongoing work on developing tools to modulate immune responses.”

In recent years, IISc has consistently maintained its position as the #1 Indian institution in world university rankings. Establishing such prestigious Young Investigator positions and Chair Professorships is part of the Institute’s long-term vision to reach the top 50 universities in global rankings. The Young Investigator positions are aimed at encouraging cutting-edge research by bright young assistant professors and incentivizing outstanding researchers to join IISc as faculty members. Each of these endowed positions can be named after the individual contributor/organization and will be associated with them for perpetuity.

“I am delighted to support IISc through the ‘R. I. Mazumdar Young Investigator’ Endowment fund, dedicated to my late father, R. I. Mazumdar, who was instrumental in putting me on the path of innovation and had inculcated a strong sense of social conscience in me. I congratulate Dr. Siddharth Jhunjhunwala, who will be the first recipient of this scholarship. Through this fund, I hope to encourage young scientists to focus on cutting-edge science for innovation in the area of bioengineering and material sciences that can address unmet medical needs. I believe private funding can play a critical role in strengthening the innovation ecosystem in our country,” said Kiran Mazumdar-Shaw.

Ms. Kiran Mazumdar-Shaw’s philanthropic efforts are directed at affordable healthcare and encouraging science & innovation. She has established the Mazumdar Shaw Center for Translational Research (MSCTR) with the aim of developing scientific breakthroughs resulting in more effective and affordable healthcare for a wide range of human diseases and conditions. The center provides an interface for the
integration of engineering, science and medicine in a discovery-centered environment towards the development of new treatment modalities.

She has also set up a 1,400-bed Mazumdar-Shaw Cancer Center (MSCC) in Narayana Health City, Bangalore, aimed at making cancer care affordable. MSCC’s affordable healthcare model allows the poor to access treatment at costs subsidized by those who can afford to pay for their therapy. She has also invested in creating sustainable livelihood solutions for the people of Karnataka in the areas of  healthcare, education and community development through the Biocon Foundation. Ms Mazumdar-Shaw is the Second Indian to join the ‘Giving Pledge’, a global initiative of Bill and Melinda Gates foundation that encourages billionaires to bequeath the majority of their wealth to philanthropic causes.

About Kiran Mazumdar Shaw:
Kiran Mazumdar-Shaw, a pioneering biotech entrepreneur, is the Chairperson and Managing Director of Biocon, Asia’s leading biopharmaceuticals enterprise. Named among TIME magazine’s 100 most influential people in the world, she is recognized as a global thought leader for Biotechnology. She has recently been conferred the highest French distinction – Chevalier de l’Ordre national de la Légion d’Honneur (Knight of the Legion of Honour). She is also the recipient of India’s coveted national awards: Padma Shri and Padma Bhushan. Under her stewardship, Biocon has evolved from an industrial enzymes company to a fully integrated, innovation-led, emerging global biopharmaceuticals enterprise. Through innovative products and research services, Biocon is today enabling access to affordable healthcare for patients, partners and healthcare systems across the globe. It has successfully developed and taken a range of Novel Biologics, Biosimilars, differentiated Small Molecules and affordable Recombinant Human Insulin and Analogs from ‘Lab to Market’.