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About Us

The need for a separate Department of Neurovirology was felt by NIMHANS in the early 1980’s since a large number of patients with acute viral encephalitis were being treated at the hospital. Dr. Carleton Gajdusek, Nobel Laureate in Virology who visited NIMHANS in 1982 had suggested that the institute invest in a separate Department of Neurovirology to cater to the diagnostic and research needs of NIMHANS.  Accordingly, the Academic Council of NIMHANS approved the creation of a separate Department of Neurovirology in 1982.  The Department of Neurovirology was subsequently started under the able guidance of Dr G. Narayan Reddy, Director, NIMHANS in January 1985 by recruiting a Lecturer, Dr V. Ravi. The Department was however officially declared open on 31st March 1986 by Dr. Baruch Blumberg, a Noble Laureate in Virology. 

Dr A. Chandramuki, Head of Department of Microbiology, officiated as the Head of the department of Neurovirology until 1996, when Dr V. Ravi took charge as the Head of the department. Presently, the department has three more faculty members; Dr Madhusudhana SN, Professor, Dr Anita Desai, Additional Professor and Dr Reeta Mani, Assistant Professor.

The department of Neurovirology has completed more than 25 years of relentless service to humanity. Since its inception in 1986, it has expanded and grown in all aspects of diagnosis, man power development, teaching and training, and basic and applied research. It has contributed significantly in all these areas including public health aspects. Its role in the present and past epidemics of viral encephalitis and H1N1 Influenza is commendable. 

The department of Neurovirology was the first laboratory in NIMHANS to obtain NABL accreditation for HIV and other diagnostic services. Every year more than 2000 samples are tested for viruses causing infections of the central nervous system. The Integrated Counselling and Testing Centre for HIV (ICTC) is a part of the department which offers training, diagnosis and counselling of HIV patients. It also undertakes HIV viral load and diagnosis of HIV in infants (EID). It is a National Reference Laboratory for HIV under NACO. It is an apex laboratory under NVBDCP for surveillance of JE, Dengue and Chikungunya and a WHO Collaborating centre for reference and research on Rabies and Acute Encephalitis Syndrome (AES) diagnosis.