M V Raghavendra Rao

M V Raghavendra Rao

Avalon University School of Medicine, USA

Title: Medical research – Scorpion as model


M V Raghavendra Rao, PhD, worked as Professor of microbiology, parasitology, immunology and Epidemiology in many universities in India, China, Nepal, Libya, and Philippines. Currently, he is working at Avalon University School of Medicine, Curacao, Netherland Antilles. He has more than 40 years of teaching and research experience. He supervised 3 students for PhD, and 8 students for MPhil. He authored 18 text books. Three universities appointed him as their advisor and 3 universities acknowledged him with fellowships.


Man today is living in a world created by him that is becoming more and more hostile every day owing to pollution. The subtle effect of thalidomide tragedy resulting in phocomalia, apoda, etc., in the offspring led to untold miseries. There are similar good number of cases of fetal deaths, still births, terratogenices, etc., in the young ones of mothers exposed to toxicants like pesticides, heavy metal radiation, etc. Can we save innocent lives growing in the wombs of mother from becoming the victims of hostile environment that we cannot avoid? This was the question that was prompted me to choose the topic of my research. Doing research with human subjects is illegal and unethical. So I have to go to non-human material which simulates human being. To study the long term effects of the toxicants on the fetal development. Rats have 21, rabbits have 30, and dog has 60 days of gestation period. Whereas gestation period is long as in case of sheep, monkeys, elephants; they are not available because of cost procurement and maintenance. So, in this situation, scorpion comes handy, cheap, available, viable and reliable, with viviparity and long gestation period of little over 10 months. Hence, scorpion was chosen as a medical research model. It is found in my research that by administering the chelating agents like BAL to the heavy metal exposed mothers, the adverse effects of mercury and lead on both mother and the fetus could be elevated.

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