Science in India:Then and Now.
SATYAJIT RATH from NII, Delhi offers his frank thoughts"We can use our growing ease of circumstance to go the way that our friends and colleagues in the ‘First World’ have gone..".
Junior faculty mentoring at UCSF
We all benefit greatly from mentors at every period in our training and careers. This is especially true in academic science, where so many processes, decisions and responsibilities that strongly influence our trajectory to success...
The Kerala Meeting
The young investigator meeting in Kerala, last February, organized by Ronald Vale (UCSF), Sandhya Kaushika (NCBS), and Mukund Thattai (NCBS) was an unusual event. The idea behind the meeting was to bring together a group of young Indian biologists in USA and Europe....
The establishment of the East India Company in the 18th century and the consequent reign in India opened up a bounty of genres to be explored. One such aspect was the rich natural biological diversity that the country housed. While this mainly drew the attention of several sportsmen and game-hunters, it also received a fair share of interest from a group of biologists. This group included botanists, mammalogists, ornithologists, herpetologists, surgeons and physicians, the latter generally associated with the British cavalry. One such medical physician-surgeon was Thomas Caverhill Jerdon. A medical surgeon by profession, he is known for his contributions in mammalogy, ornithology and herpetology of British India.
Integrating research with undergraduate teaching : a personal recount
L.S. SHASHIDHARAfrom IISER Pune gives his personal recount "Purely from the academic point of view, I have always been inclined to spend more and more time in undergraduate teaching"..
Cutting-edge Technology Platforms in India
C-CAMP is a new center in Bangalore that provides access to cutting-edge technologies in the life sciences. Learn what it has to offer..
Leishmaniasis Research Society (India)
Leishmaniasis Research Society (India), a society formed to fight and eradicate Kala Azar in India by collaborating effectively between academic institutions and industry, Neeloo Singh the founder and secretary of the society tells you more……….
|Teaching and Research initiative in India
|Science education and research in India is experiencing a huge fillip. In addition to cutting edge and exciting research in existing institutes a number of new and exciting educational initiatives have been set into motion in the past four years. This is not only transforming the opportunities for talented young students of science, but also providing an incentive for researchers to return to India at this time.
Scientist and Mommy
At one point I thought of myself as a scientist who also happened to be a woman. At the end of four long-gestation projects that ran crazily overlapping with each other, two resulting in boys now aged 4 and 7,
50-Years On: It’s time for De-Novo thinking in Indian Pharmaceutical Policy Making
Pharmaceutical policy making in emerging economies is going through heady times. In countries like Brazil and China, the issue of affordability of medicines is being contemplated through a variety of measures none unresolved in terms of their expected societal efficiency.
Marie Curie Fellowship – a scientific opportunity not to be missed
I work as the Co-ordinator, International Centre for Nanobiotechnology (ICN), Manonmaniam Sundaranar University, Tamilnadu, India (http://www.msuniv.ac.in/). Over the years various European fellowships that have enabled me to acquire the training required to start and head life science research programmes in India.
Fun in Funding! The Wellcome Trust/DBT India Alliance
The Wellcome Trust-DBT India Alliance, an independent, public charitable trust based in India that has been recently established by the Wellcome Trust (UK) and the Government of India’s Department of Biotechnology.
ENCODE – The first flag on a new frontier
G.P.Manjunath and Farhat Habib
For the data junkies among us Christmas came early this year! Five years after the first set of publications the Encyclopedia of DNA Elements (ENCODE) consortium has released a comprehensive analysis of the human epigenome. The project that kicked off in 2003, released data sets from the pilot phase in mid 2007. In June of that year, a paper detailing the analysis of functional elements in 1% of the human genome was published in Nature with 36 other papers in Genome Research. Just over 5 years later, the ENCODE project reported a similar analysis of the entire human genome in 30 publications across 3 journals.
The month of March saw a landmark decision by an Indian Court, wherein it granted compulsory license to an Indian pharmaceutical – NATCO to manufacture generic version of the drug Nexavar thereby breaking Bayor’s monoplogy on this life saving drug for Hepatocarcinoma. Frontline, an Indian magazine came up with an issue dedicated to Indian Patent law covering medicinal drugs and how that affects the pharmaceutical companies. This May 4th issue is available online for anyone interested- http://www.frontlineonnet.com/fl2908/fl290800.htm.
The Exciting Science Group, National Chemical Laboratory, Pune
K. Guruswamy introducing the "Exciting Science Group", which aims to connect scientists with high school students and teachers in Pune.
Every year it is estimated that there are nearly 4, 40, 000 new cases of multidrug resistant tuberculosis (MDR-TB) of which at least 1, 50, 000 prove to be fatal. Over the years there is yet another infamous antibiotic resistant bacterium that has been giving sleepless nights to doctors all over the world - MRSA (Multidrug resistant Staphylococcus aureus). To add to all the antibiotic resistance in the world is development of the new strains right here in India itself. Metallo Beta lactamase Klebsiella, Pneumoniae strain that was first reported in a patient who contracted the infection in New Delhi in 2009. Since then this resistance gene (bla NDM1) has been reported in E.coli and has been detected around the world.
Tragic Irony of a Miracle
The serendipitous observation by Alexander Fleming on the morning of September 3, 1928, a halo of inhibition of bacterial growth around a contaminant blue-green mould, paved the way for the discovery of a miracle - Penicillium notatum, from which penicillin was produced. This was the first step in the journey towards the antibiotic revolution. Antibiotics helped transform the practice of medicine in the fight against bacterial infections. The heady euphoria created by the discovery of various antibiotics in the 1950s prompted Dr William Stewart, the Surgeon General of the United States to remark, “The time has come to close the book on Infectious Diseases. We have basically wiped out infections in the United States”. But we failed to realize the resilience of the microbes; their survival skills characterized by their ability to develop resistance in the face of antibiotic pressure started the fight back.
From Chidambaram to Cambridge: A life in science
Since the Chemistry prize had been awarded for biological work the previous year, I was confident that it would not be awarded for the ribosome that year.
Will they return?
"Will They Return? The Willingness of Potential Faculty to Return to India and the Key Factors Affecting Their Decisions" authored by researchers from Rutgers University and Tata Institute for Social Science sheds light on the different factors which concern potential faculty/scientists wanting to return to India.
Research Experiences for College Students
Acquiring knowledge from text books and the teachers has been the mainstay of the undergraduate education in India. But doing things on your own builds scientific temperament and innovative thinking.
The importance of collaborations in the biosciences in India
Biological research in the contemporary sense requires a broad multidisciplinary scientific base. With the traditional strength of the physical and natural science disciplines available in India,
Low budget digital microscopy for schools and informal learning environments.
When I began interacting with children (elementary to high school) in Hyderabad, I realized that it was not very easy to get them excited about biology. This was especially visible when one saw the excitement that chemistry experiments created. I could even bring some excitement into astronomy using the open-source 'Stellarium' software.
The ‘Science Katta’ at Pune: catching them young
It’s Tuesday of any week. It is about five minutes to six in the evening at the Department of Biotechnology at Abasaheb Garware College in Pune. All the classes are over by now. Most students have dispersed calling it a day.
inStem : The new stem cell institute at Bangalore
The Institute for Stem Cell Biology and Regenerative Medicine (inStem), is an autonomous institute of the Department of Biotechnology, located at and nurtured by the NCBS,
Scientist and Teacher
When I am asked where I work and reply “IIT Bombay” the most common question that follows is “What do you teach?”. To this I inevitably reply “Molecular biology and microbiology, but my lab does research on malaria”.
Science Education and Research in 21st Century India
As the Indian society is reinventing itself, it is going through a massive change. To ensure sustainable growth, we need to move from service economy to knowledge economy. In this context, we are ushering a new education system in science and technology to bring Indian intelligentsia into knowledge production.
Bio-Incubators :- Bringing Ideas to Life
More often than not scientific researchers stumble across scientific discoveries that can be either patented or be commercially viable when intended for a production scale up. For example consider an anti cancer therapeutic agent discovered in the confinements of lab, the researcher has a great opportunity if he decides to patent it and sell it to a pharmaceutical company. So how is it realized? The solution is Bio-Incubator.
The Human Frontier Science Program
The Human Frontier Science Program (HFSP) is an international funding program that supports collaborative research in the form of grants for teams of scientists in different countries and postdoctoral fellowships for advanced training ...
In the year 1952 with a view to preserve the fauna of India, particularly to take urgent steps to prevent extinction of any species, the Government of India established an Indian Board of Wild Life (IBWL). The Board has since been doing pioneering work to arouse public consciousness in favour of wildlife preservation.
University-Institute Interactions: How will it Improve Undergraduate Biology Training in India?
How can one harness the collective intellectual resources and facilities in India to provide high quality education in the life sciences for college students?
The Neem Genome and a Public-Private-Partnership
Friday September 30th 2011 morning when scientists all over India scanned the newspaper while they had their “cuppa”, some caught a small headline with a picture insert that resembled the one below.
“Ganit Labs in Bangalore sequences the Neem Genome”.
Obesity and Diabetes -: The missing link?
Researchers at the Madras Diabetic Research foundation and Dr. Mohans Diabetes Specialities centre, Chennai, India have established a link between Diabetes and adipocytes(fat cells) in our body. Under induced oxidative stress fat cells switch over to a senile (aged) phenotype characterised by increase in generation of Reactive Oxygen Species (ROS), DNA damage and shortened telomeres. Finny Monickaraj et al. point out that it is the switch of these stressed fat cells to a senile phenotype that leads to glucose uptake impairment, thus insulin resistance.
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