"If therefore thine eye be single, thy whole body shall be full of light" - Holy Bible
Eye is the light of the body and cornea, the black central transparent portion of eye is the one that transmits the light into the eye. Cornea is a unique tissue not only because of its transparency but also by its nutrition. Since inception, Cornea has been a fascination and inspiration to Nichi-In, the parent organization of NCRM for its composition, structure, function and above all, corneal diseases both preventable and treatable using cell based therapies are seen more in the developing nations especially in children.
In eye donation, only the central transparent portion of the cornea is harvested from the cadaver and transplanted to the patient to give the 'Gift of Sight'.
Annually approximately 100,000 people in a country like India require corneal transplantation. However the total number of people who get the transplantation is less than 10%. The situation remains almost the same in several developing nations. In the total required number of corneal transplantations, cell based therapies using corneal limbal stem cells and corneal endothelial precursors cells could be the suitable substitutes to almost 60% of the patients.
With an aim of addressing the need of the hour to give a long lasting solution using an ideal source of cells, stem cells or progenitor cells for the epithelial and endothelial diseases of the cornea, the corneal cell therapy initiative was started and CESBANK is the Flagship project of the NCRM-Corneal cell therapy initiative.