Ranadive, was born on this day in 1917 in Pune. Her father's encouragement to pursue a medical education inspired Ranadive to excel academically, but her calling was in biology.
In 1949, she received a doctorate in cytology, (study of cells), while she was working as a researcher in the Indian Cancer Research Center (ICRC). After a fellowship at Johns Hopkins University in Baltimore, Maryland, USA, came back to Mumbai and ICRC. Here, she established India's first tissue culture laboratory.
As director of ICRC, Ranadive was among the first researchers in India proposing a link between breast cancer and heredity and to recognise links among cancers. She also studied Mycobacterium leprae, and bacterium that causes leprosy, and helped in developing a vaccine. In 1973, Dr. Ranadive and 11 colleagues founded the Indian Women Scientists' Association (IWSA) to support women in scientific fields.
Google said in a blog, “Ranadive fervently encouraged students and Indian scholars abroad to return to India and put their knowledge to work for their communities. After retiring in 1989, Dr. Ranadive worked in rural communities in Maharashtra, training women as healthcare workers and providing health and nutrition education. The IWSA now has 11 chapters in India and provides scholarships and childcare options for women in science. Dr. Ranadive's dedication to health justice and education remains influential to her students who work as scientists today.”