Arsenic situation and its remedy in Bangladesh

Viola Vitalis developed a unique satellite clinic system to reach out to the victims of arsenic poisoning. The basic clinic was on a truck, armed with doctors, nurses and awareness workers and well equipped with nutraceuticals and test equipments. The base clinic visited several satellite clinics where the patients were diagnosed, received their nutraceuticals and learnt to prevent further exposure to arsenic. One base clinic had 5 satellite clinics and each served approximately 500 patients. The satellite clinics were disbanded when all people in the area were cured. The country's only satellite clinic with aims to cure arsenicosis was immensely successful and people in arsenic prevalent districts were helped through the project.

An arsenicosis patient

Formulation for increasing glutathione in vivo

Based on the results of laboratory studies from Allium Vitalis, Viola Vitalis developed a nutraceutical formulation for increasing glutathione inside the cell. The research, which holds two patents (US 7678833), is based on the use of garlic extracts as source of cysteine supplement which aids in the natural detoxification pathway and boosts up the anti-oxidant capacity of the body. Viola Vitalis worked at the level of translating the experimental results of Allium Vitalis into viable products which were eventually manufactured and marketed at national and international level.

Products and a few of their ingredients

Dissemination of Mid Infrared Technology

Through the joint efforts of Viola Vitalis and our collaborator Miris AB, milk analyzers are being distributed to some of the largest dairy industries in Bangladesh. Dairy Milk Analyzers (DMA) developed by Miris AB utilize the ground breaking Mid Infrared technology for milk analysis, which is far superior to other existing technologies currently in use. Thanks to Viola Vitalis, this technology is gradually becoming a household name for milk analysis in the cooperatives and dairy industries of Bangladesh.

Miris Analytical instrument in Bangladesh

Market expansion of Miris instruments in Bangladesh will help to serve numerous dairy farms within the country. Due to its proximity to other large international dairy industries, Bangladesh is ideally located to begin expansion efforts at. The goal of this Swedpatnership funded project is to set up a sustainable business in the Bangladeshi market. Human resources are being trained and scientific know-how is being transferred in preparation to this market expansion. Several employees from Bangladesh have already been trained on Miris's technology, machine assembly and troubleshooting. Experts from Miris have also trained people in Bangladesh, gave demonstrations of how the machine functions and gathered information on market potential on the analyzers.

Booming dairy industry of Bangladesh

Membrane distillation technology in Bangladesh

Experts from HVR Water Purification AB conducting field survey

Viola Vitalis in association with Scarab development AB and HVR Water Purification AB conducted a market survey for existing water purification products of Bangladesh. In addition, a feasibility study was carried out for the distribution of their product Elixir, which uses membrane distillation technology for water purification. Compared to the current technologies in use in Bangladesh, membrane distillation has a higher installation cost but functions at a lower maintenance cost.

Membrane distillation technology for arsenic remediation

In order to adapt the membrane distillation technology for use in arsenic remediation for the rural poor, experts from HVR Water Purification AB studied several plausible sites in Bangladesh for setting up water purification plants. In Baghabari, Shirajgong, possibility of associating water purification plant with biogas or solar power source was systematically studied. Such plants would be the perfect solution for supplying arsenic free water for the rural poor at lower costs.

Examination of a biogas installation as a possible site for a membrane distillation plant

Satellite Laboratories for small scale field research

Satellite Laboratory: Biosensors for arsenic detection in water

Sometimes research work, which does not warrant regulatory procedures, is hindered by lengthy and unnecessary bureaucratic red tape. Viola Vitalis provides such research with easier access to resources in Bangladesh via small scale satellite laboratories. The Biosensor project, detailed below, is one example of Satellite Laboratories.

Biosensor to detect environmental pollutants

In 2010, Viola Vitalis together with Helmholtz Center for Environmental Research, Leipzig, Germany developed a biosensor for the detection of specific concentrations of arsenic in water.This sensor contains genetically modified non-pathogenic E.coli K12 bacteria that emit light when in contact with arsenic dissolved in water. Intensity of light emitted correlates with the concentration of arsenic. The developed biosensor is a user-friendly and affordable solution for the detection of arsenic in contaminated water.

Field testing of Biosensors for arsenic detection in water