CMFRI develops antiviral product from seaweeds against delta variant of Covid

Kochi: The ICAR-Central Marine Fisheries Research Institute (CMFRI) has come up with a nutraceutical product from select seaweeds to boost the innate immunity related to post-Covid complications.

Named as CadalminTM Immunalgin extract (CadalminTM IMe), the product also has antiviral properties against the delta variant of Covid.

“The product is a synergistic combination of seaweed-based nutraceutical product, which is a 100 per cent natural blend of highly nutritious bioactive ingredients extracted with eco-friendly ‘green’ technology”, said Dr Kajal Chakraborty, Head of the Marine Biotechnology, Fish Nutrition and Health Division of the CMFRI who led the research works to develop the product.

This marks the tenth product in a series of nutraceuticals developed by the CMFRI deriving from marine organisms. The institute, in the past, has successfully brought out nutraceuticals targetting a range of lifestyle diseases, such as type-2 diabetes, arthritis, cholesterol, hypertension, hypothyroidism, osteoporosis and fatty liver.

Dr Chakraborty said that bioactive pharmacophore leads from seaweeds were used to develop the nutraceutical product. “A promising reduction of viral infection rate was observed by administering CadalminTM IMe on SARS CoV-2 (delta variant) induced cells. CadalminTM IMe elevates innate immune responses by the regulation of the secretion of pro-inflammatory cytokines and chemokines”, he added.

The nutraceutical does not have any side effects as established by detailed preclinical trials.

“It does not have toxicity concerning clinical and behavioural symptoms. The active ingredients in the product would be packed in plant-based capsules. Large-scale extraction of the active principles from the raw material was optimized in a factory unit, which demonstrated the commercial feasibility of the nutraceutical product”, said Dr Chakraborty, adding that the process for commercialisation of the product is in progress.


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