Sriram Natarajan and Dr. Chandrasekhar Nair

Sriram Natarajan and Dr. Chandrasekhar Nair

Molbio Diagnostics

Sriram Natarajan and 
Dr. Chandrasekhar Nair
Year of incorporation: 2000

Revolutionizing diagnostic testing

Sriram Natarajan and Dr. Chandrasekhar Nair played a critical role in India’s war against the COVID-19 pandemic.

The duo are the brains behind Truenat, the world’s first commercial point-of-care molecular diagnostics platform using PCR technology, developed and marketed by Molbio Diagnostics.

Before starting Molbio Diagnostics, Natarajan, with experience in academic research and developing, manufacturing, and marketing diagnostic devices, had co-founded Tulip Diagnostics in 1989. In 2017, Tulip Diagnostics was sold to the US-based diagnostics major PerkinElmer.

Dr. Nair, a graduate of BITS, Pilani and a PhD from VIT, had earlier founded Bigtec Labs in 2000, now the wholly owned R&D subsidiary of Molbio.

Said to be one of the fastest RT PCR tests in the market, Truenat helped India fight the pandemic by increasing access to RT-PCR testing in remote areas of the country. So far, Molbio has supplied over 19 million Truenat test kits to labs in India, and almost 40% of labs use this kit for COVID-19 testing.

From 2000 to 2018, the duo invested more than INR400 crore in the R&D of Truenat. Nair’s efforts were applauded when he received the Infosys Science Foundation Prize for the development and large-scale deployment of Truenat in September 2021. The same year, the Drugs Controller General of India (DCGI) approved Truenat Nipah test kit – the first kit in India to receive emergency use regulatory approval to conduct tests for Nipah.

Molbio has a growing ambition to expand its production capabilities. Aiming to reach a revenue of US$1 billion in the next three to five years, Molbio, with already 30+ tests on the Truenat platform, is now developing kits for 40 new diseases.