Controlled Release Society Indian Chapter (CRSIC) organized its 19th International symposium from 25th to 27th  February 2021 on a virtual platform. The theme of the symposium was “Advances in Technology and Business Potential of New Drug Delivery Systems” This is a flagship event of CRSIC that is conducted every year in the month of February in Mumbai and has always been receiving excellent participation from academia as well as industry. This year too, the symposium received an overwhelming response from the post-graduate students, academicians, and Industry with more than 800 registrations. The event being a virtual one, researchers from across the country as well as from the USA, Ireland, UK, Germany, UAE, Malaysia, and Australia could also participate. 

The symposium was unique in a number of ways. The registration was offered free of charge to all the CRSIC members. 66 e-posters along with the video presentations were made available for viewing throughout the 3 days of the symposium. The delegates had an opportunity to have live online interaction with the poster presenters during these three days. To enhance the engagement of the participants in the virtual program, brownie points were assigned for visiting the posters, interacting with the poster presenters, other delegates as well as with the speakers. Even a virtual selfie booth was set up for delegates to take a selfie and upload it on social media. Student mentorship sessions were arranged on Day 1 and 2 of the symposium wherein the invited speakers of the day mentored the young researchers on various aspects of research methodology. One more unique feature of this symposium includes the “Go Green Drive to Save Planet” adapted by CRSIC.  As a part of this drive, each invited speaker at the symposium was presented with a “Go Green Certificate” and a tree would be planted on behalf of each invited speaker at Tatyasaheb Kore College of Pharmacy, Warananagar.  The trees would be the epitome of the ever-lasting bond between the speakers and the CRSIC.


The symposium began with the inaugural function. The President CRSIC, Dr. Parizad Elchidana, Principal Technical Consultant – Pharma, ACG World gave the welcome address. Mr. Ajit Singh, Chairman ACG Worldwide, Ex- president, and patron member of CRS IC addressed the delegates regarding the importance of the research and novel drug delivery technologies in the advancement of the pharma sector. He also emphasized upon the involvement of the pharma and allied industry in the activities of organizations like CRSIC. Dr. Vandana Patravale, Professor of Pharmaceutics at Institute of Chemical Technology, Mumbai and Vice President of CRSIC, and the editor of the Newsletter briefed the audience about the CRSIC e-Newsletter and the e-abstract book. Dr. Yvonne Perrie, Professor in Drug Delivery, University of Strathclyde, Scotland, UK, and President, CRS Inc. was the Guest of Honor of the inaugural function. She formally released the e-Newsletter and e- abstract book. The inaugural program concluded with the vote of thanks proposed by Dr. Vandana Patravale. The program was ably coordinated by Dr. Madhur Kulkarni, Associate Professor, and HOD-Pharmaceutics, SCES’s Indira College of Pharmacy, Pune and Secretary, CRSIC.

Dr. Vyonne Perrie gave a plenary talk on “Designing Delivery Systems for mRNA Vaccines”. The session was chaired by Dr. Parizad Elchidana. Her well-received session was followed by the talk of Dr. Mark Willcox. Dr. Wilcox is currently a Professor and Research Director at the School of Optometry and Vision Science, UNSW, Australia. He enlightened the audience on “Developing New Antimicrobial Coatings and Disinfectants for the Fight against COVID – 19.” Dr. Rakesh Tekade, Associate Professor, NIPER, Ahemdabad enlightened the delegates on “Hybridized Dendritic Technology for the Delivery of SiRNA Therapeutics” The sessions were chaired by Dr. Yogeshwar Bacchav, Director Adex Pharma and Member of Executive committee, CRSIC.

The scientific program of the day was followed by the Student Mentorship Session. The panel of mentors included Dr. Vyonne Perrie, Dr. Rakesh Tekade, Dr. Parizad Elchidana, and Dr. Vandana Patravale. Dr. Milind Umekar, Principal Smt. Kishoritai Bhoyar College of Pharmacy, Nagpur coordinated the session.

Day 2

The symposium was initiated with an outstanding presentation of Prof. Marcelle Machluff, Dean, Technion- Israel Institute of Technology, Israel. She talked on a novel topic “Nanoghosts: A New Paradigm in the Drug Delivery Field”. The session was chaired by Dr. Vandana Patravale.

Dr. Cornelia Keck, Prof. of Pharmaceutics and Biopharmaceutics at The Philipps- Univesitat Marburg, Germany presented a session on “Fostering the Dermal and Transdermal Penetration of Active Compounds with Nanoparticles – Fascinating New Insight”

Dr. Sara Cordeiro, Senior Lecturer in Pharmaceutical Sciences, Leicester School of Pharmacy, De Montfort University, UK, spoke on  “Microarray Patches for Transdermal Drug Delivery and Diagnostic Approaches” The sessions were ably chaired by Dr. Maharukh Rustomjee, Founder and Managing Partner of Amaterasu Lifesciences LLP.

Dr. Ijeoma Uchegbu, Professor of Pharmaceutical Nanoscience, UCL School of Pharmacy, University College, London, UK was the Keynote speaker of the second day. She delivered a session on “Pharmaceutical Nanotechnology and Drug Development” The session was chaired by Dr. Vandana Patravale.

Dr. Sujata Sawarkar, Professor of Pharmaceutics, Bhanuben Nanavati College of Pharmacy, Mumbai coordinated all the sessions of day 2.

The Student Mentorship Session included Dr. Sara, Dr. Cornelia, Dr. Ijeoma, and Dr. Maharukh as the mentors. All of them kindly and efficiently addressed the queries and doubts of the delegates.

Day 3

Dr. Padma Devarajan, Professor of Pharmaceutics, Institute of Chemical Technology, Mumbai, and the patron member of CRSIC chaired the 1st scientific session of the day. Dr. Amirali Popat, Director of Research at the University of Queensland’s School of Pharmacy& President- CRS Australia presented the topic of “Emerging Trends in Stimuli-Responsive Oral Drug Delivery”

Dr. Andy De, Senior Director, Healthcare and Life Sciences Industry Solutions, Texas, USA delivered a session on “The Impact of Artificial Intelligence (AI) and Analytics in Healthcare in the Emerging Post-Pandemic New Normal”.

Dr. Kiran Krishnan, Senior Vice President, Global Regulatory Affairs, Apotex Corp., USA addressed the session entitled “Regulatory Considerations and Challenges with Nanoparticle Based Drug Delivery Systems”

Dr. Justin Hanes, Professor and Director of the Centre for Nanomedicine at the John Hopkins University, USA, and Immediate Past President CRS Inc. was a Keynote speaker on day 3. He presented the talk on “Drug Delivery to the Eye: From Concept to Clinical Success”

The sessions were chaired by Dr. Hitesh Doshi, Vice-President R&D, Sulphur Mills Ltd, and Ex- Treasurer and Vice President, CRS IC.

Valedictory function

Dr. B. Suresh, Pro-Chancellor, JSS Academy of Higher Education & Research, Mysuru was invited as the chief guest of the valedictory function. Dr. Suresh announced the names of the winner of “The Young Scientist Award” as well as the winners of the e-poster presentation competition.

Young Scientist Award which was instituted by Dr. H. L, Bhalla was given to Ms. Ahana Banerjee, IIT Delhi. The topic of her research was

 “Co-Delivery of Chx/Pdgf from Layered Hydrogel Scaffold for the Regulation of Diabetic Wound Microenvironment”

The winners of the first, second, and third prizes are presented below along with their topics of the e- poster presentation:

1st Prize

Ms. Vineeta Sharma, IIT, Madras

“Cardiac Function Restoration by Co-Delivery of 5-Azacytidine in Protein Nanoparticles for Effective Stem Cell Differentiation in Rat Myocardial Infarction.”

2nd Prize

Mr. Juber Pendhari, Bombay College of Pharmacy

“Mitochondria Targeted Liposomes of Metformin for Improved Anticancer Activity Preparation and Evaluation”

3rd Prize

Mr. Dinesh Choudhary, NIPER Guwahati 

Feasibility of Extruding, Printing and Enteric Coating of a Non-Enteric 3D Printed Hollow Capsular Device Using Eudragit® Polymers with Diverse Drug Release Characteristics


The symposium received sponsorships from the Pharma and Allied industry

Sun Pharma was an Overall Event Sponsor.

Merck, Arihant Innochem in collaboration with Lubrizol Lifesciences and ACG were the Tech Showcase Sponsors

Ashland, Abitech Corporation and Merck offered the e- Abstract Book sponsorship.