My Story: I Lost My Father To Sickle Cell Anaemia When I Was 8, Today I Am Working To Find A Cure

My Story: 'I Lost My Father To Sickle Cell Anaemia When I Was 8, Today I Am Working To Find A Cure'

Ruthik Thorat is working as a student researcher with Mumbai-based HiMedia Laboratories on a novel drug that gives a pleiotropic effect for sickle cell anaemia.

There are more than 20 million sickle cell anaemia patients worldwide, and I am one of them. I was interested in researching immuno-haematology.

I was diagnosed with sickle cell anaemia when I was 3-year-old. Since my childhood, I have been reading about sickle cell anaemia disease and other blood disorders. What kept me going to research was my father's demise when I was 8-year-old.

He passed away due to sickle cell anaemia. I was shattered; losing someone so precious in my life was unacceptable to me. I had to do something about it so that others won't have to face what I suffered.

I wanted to find better treatment for people living with sickle cell disease. So, I started to read about this dreaded disease at the age of 11 and discovered that it was life-threatening. Curiosity became a passion for learning deeply into scientific papers and publications. The impact of this disease on my life resulted in a challenge for me to take this disease as my project and find a cure for it.

So, I started drug hunting for this disease and found a drug that has promising properties, and I read further about this drug.

Studying in-depth about medicine seems to be promising as I am keen to learn more about the treatment of sickle cell anaemia. Currently, I have taken a gap year after my high school graduation, and I'm simultaneously working with HiMedia R&D team under the guidance of Dr.Vishal G. Warke. To focus on my project and pursuing other research interests, I remain thankful to my mentors.

Furthermore, I am also working on glioma(brain cancer) at IIT-Bombay Proteomic Analysis of Human Gliomas for Biomarker Discovery at India Institute of Technology Bombay (IIT- B).

I researched at Himedia labs for my project idea, "A Novel Peptide Drug as therapeutic for sickle cell anaemia". This project made me win the national science fair, IRIS National Science Fair I was selected to be part of the team from India in order to present this research idea at Phoenix, Arizona, USA.

I want to do more research in this field and make the treatment accessible to more patients. I strongly feel that despite setbacks, we should keep moving ahead in life.

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Editor : Shubhendu Deshmukh
Creatives : Abhishek M

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