Google on Monday dedicated a doodle to the Indian cell biologist Dr Kamal Ranadive to mark her 104th birth anniversary. Ranadive is best known for her groundbreaking research on cancer and for her devotion to creating a more equitable society through science and education.
The doodle, created by Indian artist Ibrahim Rayintakath, shows Dr Ranadive looking at a microscope.
Kamal Ranadive was born in 1917 in Pune, India. Although her father encouraged her to pursue a medical education, Ranadive found her calling in biology instead. In 1949, she received a doctorate in cytology, the study of cells, while working as a researcher in the Indian Cancer Research Center (ICRC).
After a fellowship at Johns Hopkins University in Baltimore, Maryland, USA, she returned to Mumbai (then Bombay) and the ICRC, where she established the country’s first tissue culture laboratory.
As the director of the ICRC and a pioneer in animal modelling of cancer development, Ranadive was among the first researchers in India to propose a link between breast cancer and heredity and to identify the links among cancers and certain viruses.
Ranadive studied Mycobacterium leprae, the bacterium that causes leprosy, and aided in developing a vaccine. In 1973, Dr Ranadive and 11 colleagues founded the Indian Women Scientists’ Association (IWSA) to support women in scientific fields.