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Interactive Research School For Health Affairs (IRSHA), Pune


Dr. Supriya Bhalerao

The prevalence of metabolic diseases is increasing worldwide. Obesity forms a cornerstone of these diseases. Further, amongst various comorbidities associated with obesity, diabetes is the most commonly observed condition. While Orlistat is the only anti-obesity drug available in the market currently, the available Oral Anti-Diabetic Agents are associated with range of adverse effects. In addition, another challenge posed by these conditions is unavailability of prevention strategies.On this background, the aim of the Obesity-Diabetes laboratory is to evaluate the efficacy of herbal drugs, nutraceuticals and lifestyle interventions in these conditions and to elucidate their mechanism of action.

Current Research Projects:

  • Effect of Yoga intervention on skeletal muscle linked glucose homeostasis in pre-diabetic individuals

    Funding agency: Department of Science and Technology- Science and Technology of Yoga and Meditation (DST – SATYAM)

    Yoga is reported to be beneficial in diabetes for control of blood glucose level. However the mechanism through which yoga works on blood glucose level in not known. One of the possible mechanisms can be glucose regulation mediated through skeletal muscles. The present study is therefore planned to evaluate effect of yoga intervention muscle quality/functionality and thereby normalization of glucose levels in pre-diabetic individuals. This would potentially be used as a prevention or prolongation program for a population that shows diabetic symptoms and is at risk of getting diabetes in short time. It would also be useful for a known population (obese population for e.g.) at risk of having diabetes.

  • Evaluation of the effect of Triphala on obesity induced cognitive deficits

    The impairment in neuro-cognitive functioning linked to obesity is an important yet under-emphasized area. In present study we are planning to evaluate the effect of Triphalaand further elucidate its mechanism of action in experimental models of obesity associated cognitive impairments. We are proposing to carry out both in vitro and in vivo studies. While in vitro model resembles the damage to brain cells by increased levels of free fatty acids in obesity, the in vivo model focuses on the behavioral and altered biochemical changes seen in obesity.

  • Knowledge and usage of Triphala: A community-based survey

    Triphala is a popular Ayurvedic polyherbal formulation consisting of 3 medicinal plants together; Phyllanthus emblica, Termnalia chebula and Terminalia bellerica. Despite an immense therapeutic potential, people from limited sections of the society are aware of its medicinal features. Besides, people tend to have varied preferences for different systems of medicine and factors like accessibility, acceptability & affordability, too play an important part. The present survey study thus has been planned to understand the varied patterns of Triphala usage and its knowledge in community.

  • Association of obesity with child’s lifestyle and maternal antenatal history in urban school going children

    It has been reported that childhood obesity, if ignored, may lead to lifestyle disorders like Diabetes and Cardiovascular diseases in adult life. Ayurveda has also described influence of mother's lifestyle during pregnancy on the progeny. With this background, we have initiated this project in the form of a survey questionnaire which aims to gauge the current dietary habits, physical activity of the child (age 6-7 years) along with detailed antenatal history of the mother. the mother.

  • Evaluation of the effect of CIT on innate and adaptive immune responses in healthy individuals

    Funding agency: Charak Pharma Pvt. Ltd.

    The immune system has evolved to protect the host from a universe of pathogenic microbes along with elimination of toxic or allergenic substances that enter through mucosal surfaces. The emergence of COVID- 19 pandemic currently has brought the immune system to the forefront. Thus strategies to boost the immune system for health maintenance are the need of the hour. The formulation CIT, manufactured by Charak Pharma Pvt. Ltd., in the wake of the current situation, will be evaluated for its effect on immunity in healthy individuals.


Ph.D.s awarded: 1


Industry projects:

Obesity Diabetes lab is rigorously involved in industry sponsored clinical trials in all research areas

Training Activities conducted:

  • Continuing Medical Education (CME) on “ Basic Techniques in Research Methodology” for Ayurvedic PG Teachers Sanctioned by Rashtriya Ayurveda Vidyapeeth (RAV), Ministry of AYUSH, Govt. of India held from 27th February – 4th March, 2017
  • Orientation Training Programme of Ayurveda for Non-AYUSH Doctors/Scientists sanctioned by Rashytriya Ayurveda Vidyapeeth (RAV), Ministry of AYUSH, Govt. of India held from 27th January 2020 to 1st February 2020.

Annual Events:

Yoga Day:

International Yoga Day Celebrations every year on 21st of June with related activities like lecture, demonstrations or discussions

Obesity Day:

International Obesity Day Celebrations every year on 11th October with scientific discussion, conducting the camps etc.

Diabetes Day:

International Diabetes Day Celebrations every year on 14th November with scientific discussion, conducting the camps etc.

Current Team:

  • Dr. Poonam Gupte, Senior Research Assistant
  • Dr. Sarika Mane, Research Assistant
  • Ms. Shital Giramkar, Technical Assistant & PhD student
  • Ms. Anu Christopher: PhD student

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