Indigenous knowledge from Gujuarat farmer used for treating Mastitis

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Utilising the indigenous knowledge system shared by a farmer from Gujarat, a poly-herbal and cost-effective medicine has been developed to treat mastitis, an infectious disease of dairy cattle.

Mastitis is a common infectious disease, which affects farm productivity due to fall in milk quality, thus impacting income-generating activities.

The treatment of infected animals with antibiotics poses a public health hazard. “Indigenous knowledge systems can offer a more sustainable alternative, and their scientific evaluation is necessary to integrate these medications in the health care system. Continuous expansion in development of technologies and products is required towards management of mastitis with minimal use of antibiotic therapy,” a release from the Ministry of Science and Technology said.

To this end, NIF, an autonomous institute of the Department of Science and Technology (DST), which reinvigorates indigenous technologies based on farmer’s wisdom, has identified this unique herbal composition shared by a farmer from Gujarat for control of mastitis among farm animals. A gel preparation has been developed for topical application over the affected udder surface, and a patent has been filed for this composition shared by the farmer Becharbhai Samatbhai Devgania.

It was found that the medication could minimise Somatic Cell Count (SCC) and improve the udder health. The Somatic Cell Count is a parameter noted globally, and efforts are fine-tuned in reducing the SCC in milk at standard limit.

The polyherbal medicine reduced inflammation which is detrimental to the udder. This critical analysis of the indigenous knowledge system led to the development of value-added commercial product Mastirak with the support of industry partner Rakesh Pharmaceuticals, which is currently manufacturing and distributing it in different parts of the country.

Dairy owners in eight states of the country — Gujarat, Rajasthan, Haryana, Madhya Pradesh, Kerala, Karnataka, Maharashtra, and Chhattisgarh — have benefited by adopting the Mastirak-antimastitis herbal medication. It has reduced the use of antibiotics and helped in the cost-effective management of the disease.

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Arushi Sana
Arushi Sana is the Co-Founder of Santerra Living, a bio-pellet factory that makes a renewable form of eco-coal and Co-Founder of NYK Daily, a global news platform. She was awarded the Times Power Women of the Year 2022, Times Digital Entrepreneur of the Year 2023, Silicon India's Top 10 Women Owned Startups of Hyderabad 2023 and IHW Council Climate Health Influencer 2024. Arushi is also a speaker for Sustainability and Entrepreneurship at various forms like the World Bank, UN International Solar Alliance and Universities, and was also invited to the UN COP28 UAE Climate Conference. She is a Sustainability Consultant for organisations looking to reduce their carbon footprint and also works with brands on social media to help them carve a presence in that niche. She holds a Degree in Computer Science Engineering from VIT University and a Diploma in Marketing Analytics from IIM Nagpur. She has previously worked in Ernst & Young and Deloitte as a Forensic Data Analyst. Arushi is a writer, political researcher, a social worker, a farmer and a singer with an interest in languages. Travel and nature are the biggest spiritual getaways for her, and she aims to develop a global community of knowledge and journalism par excellence through this News Platform.

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