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Kiran Mazumdar-Shaw, 67

Executive chairperson, Biocon

Previous Rank : 2

Her companies, Biocon and Syngene, made significant contributions to addressing the fallout of the Covid-19 pandemic. In July, the Drugs Controller General of India (DCGI) granted ‘restricted emergency use’ of Biocon’s novel biologic drug, Itolizumab, for the treatment of cytokine release syndrome in Covid-19 patients. This isn’t all. The DCGI had also given the company approval for emergency use of CytoSorb, a blood purification device that helps fight cytokine storms in critically ill Covid-19 patients. For those suffering from Covid-19, cytokine storms are believed to be a leading cause of death. CytoSorb therapy is meant to reduce this through blood purification. Meanwhile, Syngene, the research services arm of Biocon, repurposed one of its laboratories to set up an RT-PCR-based Covid-19 testing facility. The company also indigenously developed an ELISA kit that identifies the presence of SARS-COV-2 (the virus that causes Covid-19) antibodies in blood samples.