How is Biotechnology impacting millions of lives?

Are you an avid lover of biology? Are you naturally inclined to apply the principles of biology to create an impact on people’s lives? Well, then the Biotechnology sector is where you may find your dream job.

With the world still reeking of over 520 million deaths due to the COVID-19 pandemic, it is undeniable that the figure could have been in billions or even more had it not been for the Biotechnology sector. Almost everything starting from the diagnosis and immediate treatment to the development of vaccines brought to light the promise that Biotechnology holds as a leading technology in the modern world. To know more about the potential of Biotechnology and the facets of human lives that it is able to impact upon, read further down.

What is Biotechnology?

Biotechnology is an industrial sector that deals with the manipulation of living organisms to create commercial products. For instance, the wealth of knowledge accumulated by cell biologists, botanists, zoologists, molecular biologists, and geneticists have been implemented by genetic engineers to manipulate information carried by the DNA in order to create transgenic animals and plants of commercial importance. Quite undoubtedly, the deepest penetrations of the biotechnology sector has been in the healthcare and agricultural markets. However, there are several other important areas where Biotechnology is making inroads with sustainable solutions. This blog highlights some fields wherein Biotechnological interventions are working wonders.

Vaccine development

Within a few months of the detection of coronavirus, scientists mapped the entire genome of the virus and it helped to understand how the virus operates. Genome mapping being an important technique in Biotechnology, the Biotechnology sector can boast of its towering presence in global markets across the map. Also, the highly effective mRNA-based vaccine for COVID-19 was first tested in cells inside the laboratory which entails practising some basic techniques of Biotechnology. Weighing the outcomes, government organizations and pharmaceutical giants have entered into strong public-private partnerships to pool resources and fund research in the domain of vaccine development.

Next-generation computing-aided drug discovery

Advanced computing technology such as artificial intelligence and machine learning have enabled Biotech companies to automate their processes and scale up operations. This handholding of technologies have enabled to reduce the cost and time required to take new drugs from bench to bedside. The ability to analyze large data sets helps medicine manufacturers to identify treatments based on the root cause of a disease. This holds immense potential to reduce the usual 90 percent failure rate for developing new drugs.  Data mining from current clinical trials can also help to predict the effectiveness of treatments down to a molecular level and even predict new or different uses for an existing drug thereby reducing cost and effort of establishing new drugs.

Genome editing

Techniques for manipulating the information present in the DNA, known as gene editing in technical jargon, has come a long way since they were first used to make edits such as addition, deletion, silencing, or replacement of a specific gene. Precise gene editing has been made possible by the advancement of technologies such as the revolutionary CRISPR-Cas9 systems. Engineered nucleases called CRISPRs acting as molecular scissors have unfurled a plethora of applications in gene therapy for the treatment of many conditions including rare genetic disorders and even fatal cancers. Furthermore, gene editing has also allowed the development of improved transgenic plants and animals capable of synthesizing a variety of medically important recombinant human proteins such as Insulin.

Precision medicine

Sequencing the entire human genome, an initiative known as the Human Genome Project, began in 1990 and was completed by 2003. This was another hallmarking achievement of Biotechnology that now allows extensive screening of patients and targeting of interventions. Improvisation of sequencing technologies have reduced the cost of genetic sequencing drastically ever since thereby making personalized gene sequencing affordable. This, in turn, has enabled the development of personalized treatment plans and targeted therapies, which are more effective than less-specific therapies because they focus on a patient’s genetic constitution. Furthermore, the falling cost of sequencing technologies has fostered the development of rapid and inexpensive methods to detect pathogens from clinical samples as well as soil samples.

Boosting agricultural yields

The global population is set to increase by 25% from 7.9 billion in 2022 to 9.7 billion in 2050. The basic need for a growing population is food, and hence its demand for feeding both people and livestock is about to increase proportionately. This automatically necessitates the use of increasing hectares of land for farming while practically cultivable land will keep on reducing as the expanding population of humans keep encroaching onto such lands. Biotechnology offers a solution to this alarming problem through the approach of gene editing. For example, crops such as wheat or corn may be engineered through the transgenic technology to grow in harsher conditions or produce more grain in a smaller area than other crop varieties while providing the same nutritional value. From another perspective, the development of biopesticides can enable protection of crops without the use of harmful chemicals thereby averting environmental damage. 

Bioprinting and tissue engineering

Another promising futuristic application of Biotechnology in the medical field is 3D bioprinting, wherein bioprinters are used to develop cell-based scaffolds using a ‘bio-ink’ comprising cells and biomaterials. This empowers one to develop skin, bone, and vascular grafts from the patient’s own cells for personalized medicine. The bioprinting technology has added a major thrust to the field of tissue engineering and regenerative medicine by enabling the creation of autologous tissue grafts for wound healing and organ transplantation.

Conclusion

These trends clearly show that the demand for biotechnology is on the rise. The fact that this particular sector is being able to solve real-life problems related to human health and nutrition has catapulted it to fame. It is also quite evident that biotechnologists need more than just a background in biology, chemistry, or pharmaceutical science to build their careers upon. With innovative solutions rooted to the genetic level, biotechnology is here to stay and offer myriad career opportunities to the brightest minds!

What is Biochemistry- more of Biology or more of Chemistry

After your 10+2 examination, it is the time to choose your carrier path and you need to decide on a subject for your under graduation study. You need to choose a subject wisely, which you can fall in love with, has a good job perspective, a versatile curriculum and you can have a carrier that is fulfilling to your intellectual and curious mind and most importantly serves society in a way that no other profession can substitute it. Here I am going to suggest to you the subject Biochemistry.

Now before you sought ‘Eureka’ and jump into this Biochemical soup; let us understand what Biochemistry really is and what the carrier opportunities are for a student studying Biochemistry. First, let us understand if Biochemistry is more of chemistry or Biology or if both of them in equivalent. The subject Chemistry mostly deals with atoms and molecules, which are the constituents of our whole universe. Chemistry describes the different properties of every individual element in the periodic table, also describes how the atomic-level structure of those elements is responsible for these special characteristics. By doing so, it opens up new possibilities to design new materials and molecules with novel functions that have never existed in our universe or some improved version of the existing materials. Therefore, chemistry discovers the basic theories or rules of chemical science to invent new materials and molecules. These rules are followed by every element and chemical reaction in nature including all the living entities. The subject Biochemistry uses those rules to explain all the reactions and phenomena of the biological world.  Consider us, Humans, the way our eyes see light follows the basic rules of photochemistry, the way we breadth it follows basic chemical rules of diffusion and osmosis. All the metabolic reaction that generates energy, produces biomolecules, polymerization of DNA, RNA and proteins follow basic rules of chemical reactions. So, you may ask, is there anything special in Biochemistry or it is just that old chemistry in a new wrapper? Biochemistry deals with the structure and functions of bio-macromolecules, which are more complex than simple elementary chemistry. Biological reactions are remarkably accurate, specific (Stereospecific/regiospecific), and high yield. Moreover, all the reactions occur at 37 degrees centigrade with no scope of heating or cooling. Therefore, although the biochemical reactions are following basic elementary chemical principles, it uses sophisticated biological machinery (like ribosome to synthesize proteins, motor proteins for cellular transport and different enzymes for biochemical synthesis, etc) to make the reactions more efficient. The subject Biochemistry deals with these machinery to explain how it works and how malfunction of it can cause a deadly disease. The scope of biochemistry extends even further to identify or invent molecules that have medicinal properties to cure the disease.  So, therefore, the subject biochemistry has the equivalent amount of Biology and Chemistry and also includes small parts of Physics too. However, the curriculum for B. Sc Biochemistry includes associated subjects like Microbiology, Cell Biology, Biotechnology, Molecular biology, Recombinant DNA technology, Immunology, Human Physiology, Genetics, etc. So, as a whole, the course Biochemistry has little more Biology than Chemistry.

You might be wondering after you finished your B. Sc in Biochemistry, what are the jobs that are available to you.  Now a day, Indian bio-industries are growing like never before and everyone knows these names like Serum Institute of India, Bharat Biotech, and Biocon. These big bio-industries which produces vaccine, enzymes, antibody-based immunotherapy for cancer (Biologics), etc recruits Biochemistry undergraduates. All medicine companies like Dr. reddy’s laboratories, Cipla, Aurobindo Pharma, Lupin limited, etc recruit Biochemistry undergraduates as laboratory associates as well as medical representatives. Different food processing, breweries and bioprocess companies recruit Biochemistry undergraduates as quality control experts. Other than industry, you can appear for all those government jobs that require a bachelor’s degree.

However, the most interesting and intense carrier opportunity a Biochemistry undergraduate can have is pursuing higher study and research. There are different competitive examinations like National eligibility test (NET) and Graduate aptitude test for engineers (GATE) after you complete your M. Sc in Biochemistry to join a research lab as a PhD student in India. Alternatively, you can appear in Graduate Record Examination (GRE)/ Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL) and choose to go abroad (USA, Germany, Canada, UK, Singapore, etc) to pursue your PhD. The focus of research in Biochemistry lab all over the world are mainly to understand the molecular basis of life. The area like protein Biochemistry identifies and understands proteins and enzymes and characterizes the function and their role in a biochemical reaction. Structural Biology is the area to understand the three-dimensional structures of bio-machineries at atomic level resolution using sophisticated techniques like X-ray crystallography, cryo-electron microscopy and NMR. Researchers are also working on cell biology, cancer biology, synthetic biology/bio-printing, antibiotic resistance, drug discovery, Bioinformatics/computational biology, immunology/antibody engineering, Virology/vaccine development, Bioelectronics/Biosensor and many more interesting topics.      

Although we know a lot about basic chemistry that explains some of the most complex phenomena in the universe but unfortunately, we still do not know everything about ourselves and the biological systems around us. We need thousands of trained biochemists (like you would be) to solve the most challenging problems in biological science. Right now burning problems are antibiotic resistance in pathogenic bacteria, the development of therapeutics for diseases like cancer and Alzheimer’s, resolving unknowns about the human brain and its functions, etc.  We need biochemists to contribute to our current development of gene therapy techniques to cure diseases associated with congenital genetic disorders like Haemophilia, Muscular dystrophy, Thalassemia, and many more. You can also contribute to human sustainability in the era of environmental crisis by implementing genetic engineering to improve food production, recycling water using microorganisms, developing new ways to control heavy metal and plastic pollution, development of biofuel/Hydrogen/microbial fuel cells as an alternative to overcome fast depletion of natural fuel resources, etc.  Please keep in mind that the path of biological research is not smooth at all; you have to be prepared for continuous failure, unsuccessful experiments and plans, sleepless nights, irregular lunch and diners and many more. However, the role you are going to serve as a Biochemist for the benefit of humankind is unique and invaluable for the well-being of all of us.

biochemistry
Figure: The mechanism of inhibition of the RNA-dependent RNA polymerase from SARS-CoV-2 by remdesivir have been discovered using cryo-electron microscopy technique which is associated with structural biology and students with a degree in Biochemistry can participate similar kind of research.

Clinching a Gleam of Optimism in Pharma Domain during Pre and Post Covid-19 era; Silver Lining in Dark Cloud

 Prologues 

The shadowy coronavirus eruption in the Chinese city Wuhan by December 2019, now called as COVID-19, and its reckless blowout to several other countries, jeopardizes thousands of lives, led to a medical emergency all over the world. The pandemic has catalysed the development of novel coronavirus drugs or vaccines across pharmaceutical, biotech companies and research organisations. Currently, there are no definite vaccines or treatments. However, there are numerous clinical trials by several pharmaceutical companies is ongoing to achieve a potential treatment. 

Outbursts 

From an economic perspective, the key issue is not just the number of cases of COVID-19, but the level of disruption to economies from containment measures 

-Ben May, Head of Global Macro Research at Oxford Economics. 

The virus outburst has transformed as one of the prime threats to the worldwide economy and financial markets. Several outbreak effects are: 

  • Global stocks of hit 
  • Declining crash of oil prices   
  • High recession risk 
  • Turn to advanced and fruitful technology 
  • Hardest hit in tourism throughout the world 
  • Visibility of lockdowns mere consequence 
  • Unemployment of a large section of common people 

Governments around the world have admonished workforces to continue from home whereas possible. The travel industry has been dreadfully damaged. Stockholders dread that the outbreak of the coronavirus will extinguish the economic growth and that governmental authority may not be enough to halt the decline. 

Pharmacists and Pharmacies; the Frontline of Public Health  

As an increasing number of countries and towns are in lockdown condition, millions of public are in isolation and are maintaining social distancing inside their homes. It has indeed observed all over the globe that the pharmacy professionals are acting frontline roles enormously. Pharmacists are a fundamental element of healthcare providing extraordinary services in the earlier pandemics and health calamity also. 

Community pharmacists and their teams remain on the front of public health during the outbreak by serving as direct access for patients, keen-sighted patients and reducing the patients’ load on health practices. Community pharmacists also endure to play their uninterrupted action for consistent supplies of medication as well as other needful supporting. The International Pharmaceutical Federation (FIP) has dispensed a pack of 10 synopses for guidance on COVID-19. Other pharmaceutical association has also providing guidelines and needful documents for the solidification and attentiveness of the community pharmacies as front line health care workers in the global health crisis. 

Pharmacies around the world are one of the few places that are kept open for public service even during the strict lockdowns. 

A Wakeup Call for Pharma Industry Globally 

As economies around the world are suffering from the impact of Covid-19 and many business faces the challenges but pharmaceutical businesses captivating step in the Covid-19 fight. Such as Eli Lilly and Gilead are farsighted growth on the market and a novel torrent of invention in the communicable disease scenery as the treatment approval for a Covid-19 cure takes off. Other pharmaceutical companies also following ensemble during the Covid-19 pandemic and using their individual proficiencies to alleviate the cargo of coronavirus. As more clinical trials are performing, novel therapies may achieve. However, during this financial regression and global health fears, the contribution of pharmaceutical firms is on the mark and their impression on the competition against the virus will not be simply forgotten. The perception of large revenues coming from newly established drugs will face amplified inspection in a time of global pandemic as an outcome of communal and competitive pressures. 

 Pharmaceutical scenario in India 

India is a chief provider of low-priced drugs all over the world and is truly recognized as the ‘Pharmacy of the World’.  It ranks 3rd, worldwide for pharmaceutical production by volume, 13th by value and accounts for about 10% of the world’s production by volume and 1.5% by value. 50% of the United States’ generic drug needs are met by India. The Indian pharma industry aspires to become the world’s largest supplier of drugs by 2030. All major pharma industries have come all together to aid with knowledge and sharing information to safeguard production of medications critical to tackle coronavirus. Alembic is operating at 80% formulation capacity and its API plant is operational at around 60-70% capacity. Similarly, Zydus, a foremost manufacturer of hydroxychloroquine (HCQ) has already augmented its capacity to produce both the API and the other formulation manifold. Additionally, other reputed and other companies is also prioritising the manufacturing of drugs that are in high demand now, like azithromycin.  A few weeks ago, Prime Minister Narendra Modi cleared HCQ supplies from India to countries like the US, Brazil and Israel. 

Rays of Hope Amidst 

The role and necessity of pharmacist is reshaping its approach towards society. Now Their true value is exposed due to their services towards masses including utmost care, psychological support etc. 

There are substantial global exertions proceeding to diagnose, cure and avert infections from the virus. Pharmaceutical firms are working universally to battle Covid-19 from scientific data gained from eras of knowledge with comparable viruses and undertaking novel inventories of research to identify additional potential treatments for R&D. 

References: 

  1. https://www.who.int/emergencies/diseases/novel-coronavirus-2019 
  2. https://thebluecircle.co/2020/05/04/covid-19-a-wakeup-call-for-indias-pharma-industry/ 
  3. https://www.bbc.com/news/business-51706225 Bukhari, Nadia, Huma Rasheed, and Bismah Nayyer. “Pharmacists at the frontline beating the COVID-19 pandemic.” (2020): 1-4 
  4. https://www.pharmaceutical-technology.com/comment/covid-19-pharmaceutical-companies-impact/ 

Biochemistry: An Integral Part of Drug Discovery

The on-going pandemic situation gave humanity a hard lesson- life is uncertain. Before the pandemic, we never seriously thought about this type of disease which could lead to such a global health crisis. Now, Covid-19 is a reality and it taught us that as the virus changed itself we must constantly change ourselves and be prepared for sudden battles. Humanity has a long history of fighting against deadly diseases like plague, malaria, polio, cholera, etc. and in all those battles our greatest weapons are drugs. In this article, we will see how biochemistry is an integral part of a drug discovery process.

Biochemistry is the amalgamation of chemistry and biological sciences. It brings together all of the sciences to study the chemical and physical processes that occur in living organisms. It truly is the science of life. Students of biochemistry learn various classical as well as modern subjects like stem cell biology, immunology, bioinformatics, genetic engineering, and many more. These subjects give them ample knowledge about the basic processes of life and that gives them the scope to explore properly a particular phenomenon in a living system. The mixture of chemistry and biology is a tremendous weapon for students for understanding the complex design of a disease-causing bacteria or virus. Applying these knowledge life-saving drugs can be developed by biochemistry professionals.

A drug is a chemical substance that, when administered to a living organism produces a biological effect. Drugs are also called medicine as it is used for treatment, cure, prevent disease, and promote good health. Drugs can be taken via different modes like inhalation, injection, ingestion, absorption via a patch on the skin, suppository, or dissolution under the tongue. So, recently discovered vaccines against Covid-19 are also part of modern-day drugs.

There are several phases of drug discovery and its commercialization; 1) Basic research for lead development 2) Preclinical studies 3) Clinical studies (different phases) 4) Review by regulatory authorities and approval 5) Pre and post marketing monitoring. In all these phases major roles are played by biochemistry people.

The first step of basic research consists of lead molecule discovery and its target identification which is totally done by biomedical scientists. During lead discovery, an intensive search ensues to find a drug-like small molecule or biological therapeutic, typically termed a development candidate, that will progress into preclinical, and if successful, into clinical development and ultimately be a marketed medicine. Generally, drugs are very specific in nature, i.e., they work in a specific manner on a specific type of cell or exo or endotoxins. So, first, to discover the lead, one has to find the type of cell or chemical substances on which the drug is going to affect, what’s the nature of the target.

The next step is the preclinical trial, which is a stage of research that begins before clinical trials (testing in humans) and during which important feasibility, iterative testing, and drug safety data are collected, typically in laboratory animals. This step requires multiple types of studies/tests like screening, tests on isolated organs and bacterial cultures, tests on animal models, general observational tests, confirmatory tests and analogous activities, mechanism of action, systemic pharmacology, quantitative tests etc. that are all done by Biochemistry people. The main purpose of preclinical studies is to accurately model the desired biological effect of a drug in animals [non-human primates] in order to predict treatment outcomes in patients (efficacy), and to identify and characterize all toxicities associated with a drug in order to predict adverse events in people (safety) for informed—preclinical testing analyses the bioactivity, safety, and efficacy of the formulated drug product.

After a proposed drug has gone through premedical trials, the next step is clinical trials. The main difference is while preclinical research answers basic questions about a drug’s safety, it is not a substitute for studies of ways the drug will interact with the human body. The biomedical persons design clinical trials, develop a study plan or protocol and follow them to answer specific research questions related to medical products. Before the trial begins, they decide who qualifies to participate (selection criteria), how many people will be part of the study, how long the study will last, whether there will be a control group and other ways to limit research bias, how the drug will be given to patients and at what dosage, what assessments will be conducted, when, and what data will be collected, how the data will be reviewed and analysed. Clinical trials follow a typical series of early, small-scale, Phase 1 studies [20-100 healthy/diseased volunteers], Phase 3 studies [Several hundred people with the disease], Phase 3 studies [300-3000 volunteers with the disease], and lastly, late-stage, large scale Phase 4 studies [Several thousand volunteers with the disease].

The next step is, review by regulatory authorities and approval of the drug. Drug approval processes are designed to allow safe and effective drugs to be marketed. Drug regulatory agencies in various countries attempt to rely on premarketing scientific studies of the effects of drugs in animals and humans in order to determine if new drugs have a favourable risk-to-benefit ratio. The manufacturer must provide the concerned authority review of all the test and study reports with detailed information about the proposed drug including usage of the drug to be effective, all the possible risks, and how to use it. Physicians and scientists of the concerned authority then review the drug research and the labelling information on how to use the drug. If the findings show the drug’s benefits outweigh its known risks — and that the drug can be manufactured in a way that ensures a quality product.

After the drug gets all the certification, the last step is Post-marketing monitoring. Post marketing drug surveillance refers to the monitoring of drugs once they reach the market after clinical trials. It evaluates drugs taken by individuals under a wide range of circumstances over an extended period of time. Such surveillance is much more likely to detect previously unrecognized positive or negative effects that may be associated with a drug. The majority of post-marketing surveillance concern adverse drug reactions (ADRs) monitoring and evaluation. Therefore, biochemistry people always get an edge in these type of drug developmental industry.

Genetics: A field to excavate for futuristic potentials

According to Edwin Grant Conklin, “what molecules and atoms and electrons are to physicists and chemists, chromosome and genes are to biologists”.

At the end of school days, as the students are at the verge of initiating their higher education, they develop a fairly vivid idea about their inclination towards a particular subject of interest. This decision is the most crucial stepping stone in the budding path of their career. If the science of life fascinates a student, then the curriculum of biology provides a basic introduction to different fields of biological science like botany, zoology, physiology, microbiology, genetics, etc. Some of these fields are classical while the others are contemporary with continuous addition of recent technologies and novel findings.

When a young scientific mind intends to unravel the mystery underlying the behaviour and characteristic features of the living world, the interrogation should be triggered at the level of DNA. DNA is an astonishing molecule that stores every possible information of all life forms: How they look like? Do they resemble their parents? How they function? Whether a person is more inclined to have a disease or whether a person can have some power to avoid a disease? How to increase yield of a crop? And many other questions find their answer in this central molecule of biology. In short, DNA is the language that writes the story of genes according to which the life forms enact.

What is Genetics all about?

Genetics, as a key field of biological science, is the blend of classical concepts of hereditary passage of genetic information from parent to offspring or of a population as a whole together with recent advancements of applied science as in genetic engineering, recombinant DNA technology, forensics and pharmacogenomics. The advancement in this field is now prompting the use of genetic information in designing disease treatment in an individualistic manner – the very essence of personalized medicine or “precision medicine” that may provide life-saving cues for ailments that are hard to treat. Using the concept of genomics and transcriptomics we can also increase sustainability of agriculture, improve crop production (genetically modified crops) to solve the global problem of food scarcity. As a major component of forensic science it is indispensable for solving cases of criminology, dubious parenthood and other issues of biological relevance under legal surveillance. Even the most complex form of genetic information is opening up through high throughput advancements like human genome project.

Components of the subject worth mentioning:

Classical genetics: Classical Genetics is the oldest discipline of genetics based on Mendelian inheritance that provided many insights into inherited traits and elucidated many inherited human disorders that were known to follow Mendel’s law of inheritance and were useful to explain the reappearance of disease within families.

Population genetics: Population genetics deals with genetic differences within and among populations, and the dynamics of how populations evolve as a result of the propagation of genetic mutations occurring within the germlines of individuals together with contribution of evolutionary attributes.

Conservation Genetics: Conservation genetics is an interdisciplinary extension of population genetics for conservation and restoration of biodiversity through comprehension of the dynamics of genes in populations.

Quantitative Genetics: Quantitative genetics deals with the genetics of traits that are continually fluctuating on the basis of alterations in the frequency distribution of traits that are difficult to assign in discrete phenotypic classes.

Ecological Genetics: It deals with features associated with fitness that are involved in interactions between/ within species, and between an organism and its environment.

Medical genetics: In the field of medicine it deals with application of genetics for diagnosis and management of genetic diseases apart from investigating the causes and inheritance of the disorders.

Immunogenetics: It refers to the scientific discipline that studies the molecular and genetic basis of the immune response with emphasis on immunological pathways as well as genetic variations that result in immune defects. It is a subfield of medical genetics.

Molecular genetics: Molecular genetics is concerned with the structure and function of genes at the molecular level and utilizes molecular biology tools and technique of genetic engineering to manipulate organism’s genome that gets translated through protein function to health and disease.

Human genetics: It involves the study of the human genome and the gene transmission from one generation to the next. It is an interdisciplinary field contributed by classical genetics, cytogenetics, molecular genetics, biochemical genetics, genomics, population genetics, developmental genetics, clinical genetics, and genetic counselling.

 Combining the concepts derived from the above mentioned subfields of genetics, every now and then, new areas of scientific knowledge and research are coming up to find the answers of countless questions that are unaddressed till date in living world and its complexity. The new fields with immense potential for research activity that are worth mentioning are Genomics, Epigenomics, Metagenomics, Phramacogenomics, and many others.

Career options:

  1. Genetic Counsellors –Due to increase in gene-based therapies and wellness treatments, there is a rise in demand for Genetic counsellors for Pedigree analysis, identification of risk factors, etc. 

  2. Forensic Science Research Associates/ Scientist – Law enforcement firms recruit geneticists to identify and analyze the evidences from DNA samples, tissue samples, etc. from potential crime scenes.
  3. Genetic Scientist in Agriculture & Food – For food and agriculture based industries, new varieties of genetically modified crops are being generated by manipulating plant genes. The resultant varieties are generated for increased yield, resistance to pests and plant pathogens or for increasing tolerance of the plants for adverse environmental conditions. It is not limited to plants, the scientist work on animal breeds also to get a better variety.

  4. Scientific Researcher – With a doctoral degree a student of genetics can work on a scientific project involving the study of various genes and their regulations to pave the way towards new discoveries like CRISPR gene editing. The Human Genome Project or the 1000 genome project is a hallmark achieved by genetic scientist.

  5. Academic researcher: As an academic researcher one can apply his/her expertise and skills developed through study and research: as a teacher as well as a researcher. And contribute to journals and books with research articles and new findings.

  6. Medical Scientist –The medical scientist can use sequence information to understand genetic disorders especially those with hereditary conditions and find a solution for them. They can address not only diseases of population in general but also at level of individuals based on response of his genome towards medication – the very essence of precision medicine or personalized medicine.
  7. Scientific Content Writer –Scientific writing is a very lucrative career at present and in the coming years as it offers you to learn in the field of one’s mother subject as well as earn.

Genetics is the science of future. As all aspects of life are being questioned for improvisation or for addressing errors or deficiencies, the molecules regulating life are now and will always be in limelight and those molecules are indeed the DNA, RNA and proteins. Therefore innumerable DNA and RNA analysis are awaiting technical knowledge of upcoming geneticists. So the job and research prospect of genetics students are broadening day by day for the young people who aspires to do something new, something different. To open up the prospects of such promising career for our future students, Department of Microbiology from School of Life Science and Biotechnology, Adamas University is opening a new three year undergraduate course BSc with Honours in Genetics.

Curriculum: Addressing all the components in the field of genetics the courses offered include the following:

  • Fundamental Courses: Principles of Transmission genetics, Population and Evolutionary Genetics, Biochemistry, etc.
  • Advanced Courses: Immunology, Molecular Biology, Microbial genetics, Genomics & Proteomics, Nanotechnology, etc.
  • Applied Courses: Bioanalytical tools, Genetic modification in agriculture, food and medicine, Tools for gene expression analysis, Genetic disorder and gene therapy, etc.
  • Skill Enhancement Courses: Molecular diagnostics & genetic counselling, Basics of Forensic Science, Bioinformatics, Intellectual Property Right (IPR) etc.

With all technologically advanced laboratory facilities available and highly qualified faculty members who excel in their respective fields of expertise, our department presents a perfect ambience for the students to undertake BSc Honours in Genetics as a choice to begin their career.

Scope of Life Sciences and Biotechnology: Understanding Various Specializations and Career Opportunities

Biotechnology, Microbiology and Biochemistry is an interdisciplinary field of applied Biology that encompasses all realms of life sciences, as well as related fields of technology, offers topics based on Genetics, Molecular Biology, Immunology, Biophysics, Plant & Animal Biotechnology, Microbial Biotechnology, Fermentation Technology, Bioinformatics, Genetic Engineering, Medical Biotechnology, and many others. The course also provides ample scope of skill development through appropriate laboratory training in different areas of Biotechnology. SoLB’s mission and vision is to prepare the students to undertake multi-disciplinary research and entrepreneurship in biotechnology and related areas in engineering, medicine and life sciences to provide solutions for human and animal health, agriculture and environment. In addition, our aim is to develop consultancy and community services to establish a thoroughly industrialized nation committed to the virtues of quality and relevance to contribute to the dynamic socio-economic development of the nation.

Key features of SoLB

  • Course structure based on UGC approved Choice Based Credit System (CBCS).
  • A dynamic curriculum that was designed and constantly updated while consulting stalwarts from industry and research institutes.
  • Highly experienced faculty members with PhD from national and International institutes offers teaching in diverse areas of applied biosciences.
  • Technology-based pedagogy including blended learning, flipped classrooms, think-pair-share, peer learning and video lectures.
  • Holistic learning through the development of human values and professional ethics, design thinking, venture ideation and entrepreneurship skills.
  • Seamless interdisciplinary learning and projects across the field.
  • A highly interactive and informative teaching atmosphere where students learn while discussing the relevant topics
  • Adamas Biotechnology Club offers a perfect platform to learn about entrepreneurship, career development and ideation.
  • Student Mentoring System to provide a personalized care for each student.

Why SoLB is your destination for career development in biological sciences

SoLB with its infrastructure of several state of the art labs offers a very interactive and innovative way of teaching. Practical understanding of theories always pave the way for a firm base of our students. Currently we have Molecular Biology lab, Recombinant Technology lab, Bioprocess lab and Plant Biotechnology lab. Additionally this year we have developed three more research labs to perform cutting-edge science in our campus. The new labs are Microbial Genetics lab, Cancer Biology lab and Stem Cell Biology labs addressing the current needs of scientific research. These labs are going to provide a golden opportunity for our graduate and postgraduate students to learn important techniques and building a challenging career. Several professors of SoLB with their strong background in scientific research provide their guidance to our students in shaping their mind to conduct a fruitful research.  

Skill development for industry-ready students

The course structure for several disciplines in SoLB has designed to cater the needs of skilled workers in the bioscience industry. To serve this purpose we have several eminent professors from industry and academia as a member in our Board of studies. Some notable members are Dr. Salavadi Easwaran – Dean, Biocon Academy, Prof. Ramakrishna Sen – HoD, Dept. of Biotechnology, IIT Kharagpur. We also have several courses on innovation, ideation, design & thinking to shape our new minds for innovative creations. These courses will help our students to develop ideas and design their steps to achieve them as a successful commercial product. Further, Adamas University Biotechnology club is offering a platform for our students to materialize their new ideas in the form of products required for betterment of society. The industry internships for students are arranged by our University’s Career Development Cell (CDC) and faculty members. The industry internships are mandatory for course completion.

Achievements of SoLB

The session of 2020-21 proves to be a very successful year for SoLB. Several students of B. Tech Biotechnology qualified GATE exams required to pursue M. Tech degrees in prestigious institutions of India. Among them Anwesha Bose scored GATE All India Rank- 48 becomes a momentary achievement for our school. There are few students from B.Sc. Biotechnology qualify JAM exams conducted by IITs and required to pursue M.Sc. in prestigious institutions of India. The year also marked with very good number of placement of our B. Tech and M.Sc. level students in several reputed companies with attractive salaries. Two professors from Department of Biotechnology and Department of Microbiology receives prestigious research grants from Department of Science and Technology (DST), Govt. of India.

 

Courses offered by SoLB

SoLB is among one of several schools of Adamas University creating vibrant innovative minds for tomorrow’s need of India. There are mainly three departments in SoLB offering twelve knowledge and research-based programmes:

Department of Biotechnology

  • B.Tech Biotechnology (Four-years duration)
  • B.Tech Food technology (Four-years duration)
  • B.Sc. Biotechnology (Three-years duration)
  • M.Tech Biotechnology (Two-years duration)
  • M.Sc. Biotechnology (Two-years duration)
  • PhD Biotechnology (Five-years duration)

Department of Microbiology

  • B.Sc. Microbiology (Three-years duration)
  • B.Sc. Genetics (Three-years duration)
  • M.Sc. Microbiology (Two-years duration)
  • PhD Microbiology (Five-years duration)

Department of Biochemistry

  • B.Sc. Biochemistry (Three-years duration)
  • M.Sc. Biochemistry (Two-years duration)
  • PhD Biochemistry (Five-years duration)

 

Eligibility criterion

B.Tech Biotechnology and B. Tech Food Technology

  • Minimum 60% marks overall in 10 + 2 level with Physics, Chemistry, Biology/Mathematics
  • Qualify Adamas University Admission Test (AUAT) conducted annually.

B.Sc. Biotechnology/ Microbiology/ Biochemistry

  • Minimum 50% marks overall in 10 + 2 level with Physics, Chemistry, Biology/Mathematics
  • Qualify Adamas University Admission Test (AUAT) conducted annually.

M.Tech Biotechnology

  • Minimum 50% marks overall in B.Tech/ M.Sc. (Biotechnology/ Biochemical Engineering/Chemical Engineering) level.
  • Qualify Adamas University Admission Test (AUAT) conducted annually.

M.Sc. Biotechnology/ Microbiology/ Biochemistry

  • Minimum 50% marks overall in B.Sc. (Botany/ Zoology/ Physiology/ Biotechnology/ Microbiology/ Biochemistry/ Agriculture/ or in allied subject) level.

Qualify Adamas University Admission Test (AUAT) conducted annually.