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October 15th, 2019

Vol. 03

NO 100

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October 15th, 2019

Vol. 03

NO 100

Toll Free Number: 18001-200-1818

www.biotecnika.org

MIT

SCIENTISTS

CREATE VIRUSES TO KILL SUPERBUGS END OF ANTIBIOTIC RESISTANCE ??

Food

Corporation

DST INSPIRE

of India Mega

Recruitment

FELLOWSHIP 2019

2019

GET THIS NEWSPAPER E-COPY VIA WHATSAPP EVERY WEEK GIVE MISSED CALL TO

080-470-90943


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HEADLINES

October 15th, 2019 Vol. 03 NO 100

MIT Scientists Create Viruses To Kill Hardest-To-Treat E. coli Superbugs – End of Antibiotic Resistance?? Scientists have now developed a weapon that can fight against antibiotic resistance. yes! these are the viruses that can kill hard-to-treat E.coli superbugs. The World Health Organization considers antibiotic resistance i.e, the rise of bacteria that do not respond to the drugs as a top threat to global health ANY MICROORGANISM CAN MUTATE & RENDER ANTIBIOTICS INEFFECTIVE. ANTIBIOTIC RESISTANCE IS ALREADY WIDESPREAD IN THE FORM OF E.COLI THAT CAN CAUSE SOME URINARY TRACT INFECTIONS, ACCORDING TO THE WORLD HEALTH ORGANIZATION. By Ria Roy

Bacteria eating viruses, or say bacteriophages, are being studied in the hopes that they could be programmed to pick up where antibiotic effectiveness actually falls off. Now, the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) researchers have engineered these bacteria-killing viruses to work alongside antibiotics to kill off E.coli. The antibiotics transformed modern medicine by turning infections that were once almost uniformly fatal to a scenario where all that could be treated in as little as a few days.

if they could, these new antibiotics es can be programmed to attack the would just face the same problem all bacteria that antibiotics drugs cannot. over again. So scientists are in search of a novel method for treating these The MIT researchers programmed kinds of deadly infections. theirs to go after drug-resistant E. coli. Scientists created a ‘scaffold,’ of And one such method is the use of the framework for the bacteriophage bacteriophages i.e, the viruses whose that they can effectively plug differname, in Greek which means ‘to de- ent genes into the program to attack But as we learned to outsmart bacte- vour bacteria.’ Each of the particular a specific bacteria. Lead author of the ria, bacteria has, in its way, learned to bacteriophages has a taste for a par- study, Dr. Timothy Lu, a biological outsmart our medicines too. And even ticular bacterium. So scientists have engineer said that they think bactewithin a single species of bacteria, been studying them with growing riophages are a good toolkit for killthere are variations. And when anti- interest to see if these bacteriophag- ing & knocking down bacteria levels biotics accurately target & kill off the majority of bacteria in an infection, the ones left i.e, the ones that were slightly different from most, multiply & become more prevalent. Antibiotics are a poor match for these kinds of mutant bacteria, that continue to survive & multiply. And as more bacteria are exposed to the antibiotics, the effect of the drug is a sort of ‘survival of the fittest’ i.e, increasingly, the bacteria strains left & spreading are the ones that are immune to antibiotics. So overprescribing antibiotics drugs only drives up the rate of antibiotic resistance. And some of the infections even become resistant to all antibiotics i.e, a death sentence. The result of this is that at least 2 million Americans develop antibiotic-resistant infections every year & at least 23,000 of them die. Researchers have been unable to develop new antibiotics fast enough to keep up with the mutations of the bacteria. Even

inside a complex ecosystem, but in a targeted way. Out of 10,000 different bacteriophages that Dr. Lu and his team created, the team found several of their new viruses i.e, the bacteriophages, could kill even mutated and hard-to-treat antibiotic-resistant E. coli. Dr. Kevin Yehl who is a postdoc fellow in the MIT lab and study colead author said that it is just the beginning, as there are many other viral scaffolds and bacteria to target.


HEADLINES

October 15th, 2019 Vol. 03 NO 100

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DST INSPIRE Fellowship 2019 – Official Notification Innovation in Scientific Pursuit for Inspired Research (INSPIRE), a Scheme of the Government of India, offers a standing opportunity for pursuing Doctoral Research at any recognized University or Institute in India through Fellowships at the same level as National Eligibility Test (NET) qualified candidates. DST INSPIRE FELLOWSHIP 2019 – OFFICIAL NOTIFICATION MINISTRY OF SCIENCE & TECHNOLOGY DEPARTMENT OF SCIENCE & TECHNOLOGY TECHNOLOGY BHAVAN, NEW MEHRAULI ROAD, NEW DELHI – 110 016 CALL FOR APPLICATIONS UNDER DST INSPIRE FELLOWSHIP-2019 INSPIRE FELLOWSHIP FOR PURSUING DOCTORAL PROGRAMME IN SCIENCE & TECHNOLOGY By Preety Suman

Innovation in Scientific Pursuit for Inspired Research (INSPIRE), a Scheme of the Government of India, offers a standing opportunity for pursuing Doctoral Research at any recognized University or Institute in India through Fellowships at the same level as National Eligibility Test (NET) qualified candidates. Innovation in Science Pursuit for Inspired Research (INSPIRE) is being implemented by the Department of Science & Technology (DST) to strengthen the National Science and Technology base. INSPIRE Fellowship Scheme of INSPIRE Programme is focused on the attraction of students to pursue doctoral degrees in basic and applied sciences including engineering, medicine, agriculture, veterinary, pharmacy, etc. after either Masters’ degree in Science/ Applied Science/ Engineering or Bachelors’/ Masters’ degree in Medicine. CALL FOR APPLICATIONS Applications are invited from i) INSPIRE Scholars after completion of their post-graduation degree in Science areas and ii) University level First Rank holders in the Post-graduate Degrees in Basic/Applied Sciences/Engineering OR Graduate/Postgraduate Degree in Medicine only from any recognized Indian University or Institute/Statutory Body in India for award of DST INSPIRE FELLOWSHIP. The Fellowship will be offered on the basis of the availability of fellowships in the current year as 1000 fellowships are available annu-

ally.

The students who are already enjoying Senior Research Fellowship ELIGIBILITY (SRF) or higher position in any project or otherwise are not eligible to i) INSPIRE Scholar having secured apply for this. Merely having the minimum 70% marks (or CGPA eligibility does not guarantee the ofequivalent) in aggregate at M.Sc. or fer of INSPIRE Fellowship. Already Integrated M.S. / M.Sc. provisionally or finally selected students to INSPIRE Fellowship against ii) 1st Rank Holder at University any previous advertisement, need not level examination in Post-Graduate apply again; their application will be (PG) level examinations in Basic/ Ap- rejected. plied Sciences including Engineering, Medicine, Pharmacy, Agricultural AMOUNT, NUMBER & DURASciences and Veterinary Sciences TION OF FELLOWSHIP from any recognized University and academic Institutions (Exclud- It offers financial support in the form ing Autonomous Colleges) in India. of a Fellowship as per GoI norms fel1 st Rank Holders at the Graduate/ lowship (Junior Research Fellowship Post-graduate Level Examination in / Senior Research Fellowship) and Medicine only conducted by a Uni- research grant to the candidate selectversity/ Institution in India are also ed under DST INSPIRE Fellowship. eligible to apply. 1st Rank should be There is a provision of 1000 INSPIRE obtained in a minimum batch size of Fellowships to be offered/given every 10 students in that university level ex- year to eligible students and each Felamination with a minimum aggregate lowship is tenable for a maximum of 70% marks (or CGPA equivalent) period of five years or completion for the entire course/ program. of the Ph.D. degree, whichever is earlier. This Fellowship shall not be Students who i) are 1st Rank Hold- available to pursue M.Sc. or M. Phil. er in College including Autonomous or M. Tech. course while pursuing InCollege Examination, ii) have ob- tegrated M.Sc.-Ph.D./ M. Phil.-Ph.D./ tained a degree (s) through Distance M. Tech.-Ph.D. courses. The continEducation Mode and iii) are 1st Rank uation of the Fellowship for selected Holder in any specialization given at candidates is based on satisfactory M.Sc. 2nd/ last Year, are not eligible performance as certified by the parfor the offer of INSPIRE Fellowship. ent institution as per stipulated GOI guidelines for this Fellowship. Candidates who are Indian Citizens and have acquired their eligibility for SELECTION PROCEDURE DST INSPIRE Fellowship during last year (2018) or current year (2019) are Selection from among the eligible eligible to apply. applicants is done in two stages i.e.

Level I and Level II. 1. Applicants who are already admitted to in Ph.D. Program in S&T prior to submitting an application and selected at both Level I & Level II will be awarded the Final Offer for the DST INSPIRE Fellowship. 2. Applicants who have not admitted to in Ph.D. Program in S&T prior to submitting the application and get selected at Level I, will be awarded a Provisional Offer for INSPIRE Fellowship. The Provisional Offer is made on the basis of scrutiny of application along with required documents (Level I) submitted by the applicant. However, the Final Offer is made on the basis of an evaluation of the application at Level II considering i) Academic merit ii) Host Institution including Research Supervisor and iii) the detailed Research Proposal by an Expert Panel. In this Level II Evaluation Process, applicants need to secure a minimum qualifying score/cutoff as recommended by the Expert Panel and approved by the Competent Authority. The cut-off marks may vary based on the competitive framework of the selection process. Also, it is important to note that Provisional Offer does not guarantee the award of the INSPIRE Fellowship.

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HEADLINES

October 15th, 2019 Vol. 03 NO 100

HOW TO APPLY Students need to apply through Online mode only for DST INSPIRE Fellowship 2019. To apply Online, please visit the website: http://www. onlineinspire.gov.in and follow the process prescribed therein. The Online application submissions will commence on 7th October 2019 (0900 Hrs) and will be available up to 6th November 2019 (1730 Hrs). No printed copy of the Application needs to be sent to DST. The process is completely online; there will be no scope for making any intimation for an incomplete or wrongly filled application. Incomplete or wrongly filled up application or application with a lack of essential

documents will be summarily rejected. Note: Before filling the application

form, please scan and save the fol- required during the ‘On-line Applicalowing documents as separate files. tion’ process. The same needs to be uploaded as

Food Corporation of India Mega Recruitment – 30+ Openings & Up to Rs. 1.40 Lakh Salary pm Official notification for the Food Corporation of India Recruitment 2019. Food Corporation of India jobs, FCI recruitment, FCI 2019 jobs, FCI 2019 recruitment, btech jobs, btech biotechnology jobs, food technology jobs, agriculture jobs. OVER 30 VACANCIES. INTERESTED BIOSCIENCES CANDIDATES CAN CHECK OUT ALL OF THE DETAILS BELOW: By Diluxi Arya

Advt No.02/2019-FCI Category-II Food Corporation of India (FCI), among the largest Public Sector Undertakings Making Sure That the food security of the Nation invites online applications for the under-mentioned posts on its own Depots and Offices spread all over the nation from qualified applicants that meet the prescribed qualifications, age, experience etc.

Name of the Post: Manager Technical

For the post of Manager (General/ Depot/ Movement/ Accounts/ Techni- Post Code: E cal/ Civil Engineering/ Electrical Mechanical Engineering), applicants will No. of Vacancies According to be chosen as Management Trainee and Zones: will undergo training for six months. The only consolidated stipend will be North Zone – 30 paid at the rate of Rs. 40000/(Forty North-East Zone – 01 thousand only) per month during the Total Vacancies: 31 training period. Management Trainees will be considered for absorption The scale of Pay: 40000 – 140000 as Managers in the IDA Pay scale of Rs. 40000 — 140000 upon successful Maximum Age limit as on completion of training period of six 01/08/2019: 28 months.

Eligibility:

vation Technology from a recognized University/ an institution approved B.Sc. In Agriculture from a recog- by the AICTE. or nized University. B.Tech. Degree or BE degree in Or Agricultural Engineering from a recognized University/an institution apB.Tech degree or B.E degree in proved by the AICTE. Or Food Science from a recognized University/ an institution approved by the B.Tech degree or B.E degree in AICTE; or Bio-Technology or Industrial BioTechnology or even Bio-ChemB.Tech degree or B.E degree in ical Engineering or Agricultural Food Science & Technology or Food Bio-Technology from a recognized Technology or Food Processing Technology or Food Process Engineering or Food Processing or Food PreserNext Page>>>>


HEADLINES

October 15th, 2019 Vol. 03 NO 100

University/ an institution approved by Phase-I and Phase-II examinations. the AICTE; PROCEDURE FOR APPLYING ONLINE NOTE i. A CANDIDATE CAN APPLY IN ANYONE ZONE ONLY i.e. EITHER NORTH ZONE OR SOUTH ZONE OR EAST ZONE OR WEST ZONE OR NORTHEAST ZONE AS PER THE VACANCIES. ii. A CANDIDATE CAN APPLY FOR ANY ONE OF THE POSTCODE A, B, C, D, E, F, G & H IN THE OPTED ZONE ONLY. iii. When a candidate is claiming a particular qualification as equal qualification according to the need of this Notice of examination, where applicable, order/ letter in respect of equal Educational Qualification, will be required to be produced by the candidates at the time of Document Verification as well as if required by FCI, indicating the Authority (with date and number ) under which it has been treated, in respect of equality clause in Essential Qualifications. The conclusion of FCI will be binding and final in this regard. iv. Candidate must indicate that the percentage obtained in Graduation calculated to the nearest two decimals in the online application. Where CGPA / OGPA/Grades are awarded, the exact same should be converted into percent and indicated in the online program. If called for subsequent phases, the candidate is going to need to produce a certification issued by the right authority inter alia signalling the standards of the University regarding conversion of CGPA/OGPA/ Grades into percent and the percentage of marks scored by the candidate concerning criteria. v. The only mode of application is ONLINE. The printed/ hard copies of this application form won’t be entertained. vi. Relevant experience, where necessary, should be after acquiring the minimum necessary qualification for the post applied. SELECTION PROCESS: Manager (General/Depot/Movement/Accounts/Technical/Civil Engineering/Electrical Mechanical Engineering): The selection procedure will be comprising Online Test, Interview and Training. A) PATTERN OF ONLINE TEST The online test will include of

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kept active till the completion of this dature. Recruitment Process. Intimation to • Validate your details and Save download call letters for the Examinayour application by clicking the tion etc. may be sent through the reg‘Validate your details’ and ‘Save istered e-mail ID. In case a candidate & Next’ button. 1. DETAILED GUIDELINES/ does not have a valid personal e-mail • Candidates can proceed to upPROCEDURES FOR ID, he/she should create his/her new load Photo & Signature as per e-mail ID and mobile no. before apthe specifications are given in A. APPLICATION REGISTRA- plying on-line and must maintain that the Guidelines for Scanning and TION email account and mobile number. Upload of Photograph and SigB. PAYMENT OF FEES nature detailed under point “C”. C. DOCUMENT SCAN AND UP- 3. APPLICATION FEES • Candidates can proceed to fill LOAD (NON-REFUNDABLE) PAYother details of the Application MENT OF FEE ONLINE: Form. Candidates can apply online only 28.09.2019, 10:00 Hrs (IST) to • Click on the Preview Tab to prefrom 28.09.2019, 10:00 Hrs (IST) to 27.10.2019, 16:00 Hrs (IST) view and verify the entire appli27.10.2019, 16:00 Hrs (IST) and no cation form before FINAL SUBother mode of application will be ac- Bank Transaction charges for Online MIT. cepted. Payment of application fees will have • Modify details, if required, and to be borne by the candidate. click on ‘FINAL SUBMIT’ 2. IMPORTANT POINTS TO BE ONLY after verifying and ensurNOTED BEFORE REGISTRA- A. Application Registration ing that the photograph, signaTION ture uploaded and other details • Candidates to go to the FCI filled by you are correct. Before applying online, candidates website (www.fci.gov.in) and • Click on ‘Payment’ Tab and proshouldclick on the option “APPLY ONceed for payment. LINE” which will open a new • Click on ‘Submit’ button. (i) scan their : screen. – photograph (4.5cm × 3.5cm) • To register application, choose B. PAYMENT OF FEES- ONLINE – signature (with black ink) the tab “Click here for New MODE – left thumb impression (on white Registration” and enter Name, paper with black or blue ink) Contact details and Email-id. A • The application form is integrat– a hand written declaration (on a Provisional Registration Numed with the payment gateway white paper with black ink) (text is ber and Password will be generand the payment process can be given below) ated by the system and displayed completed by following the inensuring that all these scanned docon the screen. Candidate should structions. uments adhere to the required specifinote down the Provisional Reg- • The Candidates applying for the cations as given in the Advertisement. istration Number and Password. post (ANYONE WITHIN THE (ii) Signature in CAPITAL LETAn Email & SMS indicating the ZONE) are required to submit TERS will NOT be accepted. Provisional Registration number APPLICATION FEE of Rs. (iii) The left thumb impression and Password will also be sent. 800/- (Excluding bank chargshould be properly scanned and not • In case the candidate is unable es but including G S T). The smudged. (If a candidate is not havto complete the application form payment can be made by using ing left thumb, he/she may use his/ in one go, he/she can save the Debit Cards (RuPay/Visa/Masher right thumb for applying.) data already entered by choosing terCard/Maestro), Credit Cards, (iv) The text for the hand written “SAVE AND NEXT” tab. Prior Internet Banking, IMPS, Cash declaration is as follows – to submission of the online apCards/ Mobile Wallets/UPI. “I, _______ (Name of the candiplication, candidates are advised • SC / ST / PwBD and Women date), hereby declare that all the into use the “SAVE AND NEXT” candidates are exempted from formation submitted by me in the facility to verify the details in payment of Application Fee. application form is correct, true and the online application form and • After submitting your payment valid. I will present the supporting modify the same if required. Visinformation in the online applidocuments as and when required.” ually Impaired candidates should cation form, PLEASE WAIT (v) The above-mentioned handwritfill the application form carefulFOR THE INTIMATION ten declaration has to be in the canly and verify/ get the details verFROM THE SERVER. DO NOT didate’s handwriting and in English ified to ensure that the same are PRESS BACK OR REFRESH only. If it is written and uploaded correct prior to final submission. BUTTON IN ORDER TO by anybody else or in any other lan- • Candidates are advised to careAVOID DOUBLE CHARGE guage, the application will be considfully fill and verify the details • On successful completion of the ered as invalid. (In the case of Visualfilled in the online application transaction, an e-Receipt will be ly Impaired candidates who cannot themselves as no change will be generated. write may get the text of declaration possible/ entertained after click- • Non-generation of ‘E-Receipt’ typed and put their left-hand thumb ing the FINAL SUBMIT BUTindicates PAYMENT FAILURE. impression below the typed declaraTON. On failure of payment, Candition and upload the document as per • The Name of the candidate or dates are advised to login again specifications.) his /her Father/ Husband etc. (vi) Keep the necessary details/docshould be spelt correctly in the uments ready to make Online Payapplication as it appears in the ment of the requisite application fee. Certificates/ Mark sheets/Iden(vii) Have a valid personal email tity proof. Any change/alteration ID and mobile no., which should be found may disqualify the candiNext Page>>>>


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HEADLINES using their Provisional Registration Number and Password and repeat the process of payment. Candidates are required to take a printout of the e-Receipt and online Application Form containing fee details. Please note that if the same cannot be generated, online transaction may not have been successful. For Credit Card users: All charges are listed in Indian Rupee. If you use a non-Indian credit card, your bank will convert to your local currency based on prevailing exchange rates. To ensure the security of your data, please close the browser window once your transaction is completed. There is a facility to print application form containing fee details after payment of fees.

C. GUIDELINES FOR SCANNING AND UPLOAD OF DOCUMENTS Before applying online a candidate will be required to have a scanned (digital) image of his/her photograph and signature as per the specifications are given below. Photograph Image: – Photograph must be a recent passport style colour picture. – Make sure that the picture is in colour, taken against a light-coloured, preferably white, background. – Look straight at the camera with a relaxed face – If the picture is taken on a sunny day, have the sun behind you, or place yourself in the shade, so that you are not squinting and there are no harsh shadows – If you have to use flash, ensure there’s no “red-eye” – If you wear glasses make sure that there are no reflections and your eyes can be clearly seen. – Caps, hats and dark glasses are not acceptable. Religious headwear is allowed but it must not cover your face. – Dimensions 200 x 230 pixels (preferred) – Size of file should be between 20kb–50 kb – Ensure that the size of the scanned image is not more than 50kb. If the size of the file is more than 50 kb, then adjust the settings of the scanner such as the DPI resolution, no. of colours etc., during the process of scanning. – If the photo is not uploaded at the place of Photo Admission for Examination will be rejected/denied. Candidate him/herself will be responsible

for the same. – Candidate should also ensure that photo is uploaded at the place of photo and signature at the place of signature. If photo in place of photo and signature in place of signature is not uploaded properly, candidate will not be allowed to appear for the exam. – Candidate must ensure that Photo to be uploaded is of required size and the face should be clearly visible. Signature: Signature, left thumb impression and hand-written declaration Image: – The applicant has to sign on white paper with Black Ink pen. – The applicant has to put his left thumb impression on a white paper with black or blue ink. – The applicant has to write the declaration in English clearly on a white paper with black ink – The signature, left thumb impression and the hand written declaration should be of the applicant and not by any other person. – The signature will be used to put on the Call Letter and wherever necessary. – If the Applicant’s signature on the attendance sheet or Call letter, signed at the time of the examination, does not match the signature uploaded, the applicant will be disqualified. – Signature / Hand written declaration in CAPITAL LETTERS shall NOT be accepted. o File type: jpg / jpeg o Dimensions: 140 x 60 pixels (preferred) o File Size: Between 10 KB – 20 KB Left thumb impression:

October 15th, 2019 Vol. 03 NO 100

paper with black or blue ink. • The hand written declaration should be of the applicant and not by any other person. • Hand written Declaration o File type: jpg / jpeg o Dimensions: 800 x 400 pixels in 200 DPI (Preferred for required quality) i.e 10 cm * 5 cm (Width * Height) o File Size: 50 KB – 100 KB Scanning the documents: • Set the scanner resolution to a minimum of 200 dpi (dots per inch) • Set Colour to True Colour. • Crop the image in the scanner to the edge of the left thumb impression / hand written declaration, then use the upload editor to crop the image to the final size (as specified above). • The image file should be JPG or JPEG format. An example file name is: image01.jpg or image01.jpeg • Image dimensions can be checked by listing the folder files or moving the mouse over the file image icon. • Candidates using MS Windows/ MSOffice can easily obtain documents in .jpeg format by using MS Paint or MSOffice Picture Manager. Scanned documents in any format can be saved in .jpg / .jpeg format by using ‘Save As’ option in the File menu. Size can be adjusted by using crop and then resize option. – If the file size and format are not as prescribed, an error message will be displayed. – While filling in the Online Application Form the candidate will be provided with a link to upload his/her photograph, signature, left thumb impression and handwritten declaration.

Procedure for uploading the docu• The applicant has to put his left ments: thumb impression on a white paper with black or blue ink. • While filling in the Online Ap• The hand written declaration plication Form the candidate will be should be of the applicant and not by provided with separate links for upany other person. loading left o File type: jpg / jpeg thumb impression and hand written o Dimensions: 240 x 240 pixels in declaration 200 DPI (Preferred for required qual- • Click on the respective link “Upity) i.e 3 cm * 3 cm (Width * Height) load left thumb impression / hand o File Size: 20 KB – 50 KB written declaration” • Browse and Select the location Hand-written declaration: where the Scanned left thumb impression / hand written declaration • Hand written declaration text file has been saved. should be as given at Point-iv under • Select the file by clicking on it the heading ‘IMPORTANT POINTS • Click the ‘Open/Upload’ button TO BE NOTED BEFORE REGIS- Your Online Application will not be TRATION’ registered unless you upload your • Hand written declaration should Left thumb impression and hand writNOT be written in CAPITAL LET- ten declaration as specified. TERS otherwise it shall not be ac- • If the file size and format are not as cepted. prescribed, an error message will be • The applicant has to write the dec- displayed. laration in English clearly on a white • Preview of the uploaded image will

help to see the quality of the image. In case of unclear / smudged, the same may be re-uploaded to the expected clarity /quality. Note: (1) In case the left thumb impression or the hand written declaration is unclear / smudged the candidate’s application may be rejected. (2) After uploading the left thumb impression / hand written declaration in the online application form candidates should check that the images are clear and have been uploaded correctly at the designated place. In case the left thumb impression or the hand written declaration is not prominently visible, the candidate may edit his/ her application and re-upload his/ her thumb impression / hand written declaration, prior to submitting the form. (3) After registering online candidates are advised to take a printout of their system generated online application forms. NOTETHE CANDIDATE SHOULD ENSURE THAT THE PHOTOGRAPHS, SIGNATURE, HAND WRITTEN DECLARATION & THUMB IMPRESSION ARE UPLOADED CORRECTLY AS PER THE ABOVE INTRUCTIONS AND AT THE DESIGNATED PLACE ONLY. THE WRONG UPLOADING OF ANY OF THESE MAY RENDER THE APPLICATION LIABLE FOR REJECTION. Note: Candidates may visit the FCI website www.fci.gov.in for regular updates. The Online registration will remain active from 28.09.2019, 10:00 Hrs (IST) to 27.10.2019, 16:00 Hrs (IST) only. In order to avoid the last-minute rush, the candidates are advised to apply early enough. FCI will not be responsible for network problems or any other problem in submission of online Application. • Submission of Online Application Form along with fee payment will commence from: 28.09.2019 from 10:00 Hrs (IST) • Last Date & time for submission of Online Application and payment of fees: 27.10.2019 till 16:00 Hrs (IST) • Availability of Call letter on website for download: A p proximately 10 days prior to announced date of examination • Date of Online Test: Will be announced in website www.fci. gov.in Tentatively in the month of November/December, 2019.


NEWS

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The Nobel Prize in Medicine 2019 – Awarded For Research on How Cells Manage Oxygen The Nobel Assembly at Karolinska Institutet, on Monday, has decided to award the Nobel Prize in Physiology/Medicine for the year 2019, jointly to William G. Kaelin Jr., Gregg L. Semenza, and Sir Peter J. Ratcliffe for their studies and discoveries of how cells sense & adapt to oxygen availability. THEIR RESEARCH WORK ESTABLISHED THE GENETIC MECHANISMS THAT ALLOW CELLS TO RESPOND TO CHANGES IN OXYGEN LEVELS. By Ria Roy

The findings have implications for treating a variety of diseases, including cancer, anemia, heart attacks, and strokes. Animals need oxygen for converting their food into useful energy. The fundamental importance of oxygen in the living has been understood for centuries; Still how cells adapt to the changes in levels of oxygen has been municating with the brain directly. unknown until this discovery. And in addition to the carotid body William G. Kaelin Jr., Gregg L. Se- controlled rapid adaptation to low O2 menza, and Sir Peter J. Ratcliffe dis- levels (hypoxia), there are other funcovered how the cells can sense & damental physiological adaptations adapt to the changing oxygen avail- too. The key physiological response ability. The team identified the mo- to hypoxia is the rise in levels of the lecular machinery that regulates the hormone erythropoietin (EPO) which activities of genes in response to the actually leads to the increased production of RBCs (erythropoiesis). The varying levels of oxygen. Seminal discoveries by this year’s importance of hormonal control of Nobel Laureates have revealed the erythropoiesis hormone was already mechanism for one of life’s most es- known by the beginning of the 20th sential adaptive processes. The team century, but how this process was itestablished the basis of how oxygen self controlled by Oxygen remained a levels affect cellular metabolism & mystery. physiological function. These discoveries have also paved the way for Gregg Semenza studied the horpromising new strategies to fight ane- mone erythropoietin gene & how it is regulated by varying O2 levels. By mia, cancer & many other diseases. using the gene-modified mice, speOxygen makes up about one-fifth of cific DNA segments located next to our Earth’s atmosphere. O2 is essen- the erythropoietin gene were shown tial for animal life. Oxygen is used by to mediate the response to hypoxia. the mitochondria organelle present in Sir Peter Ratcliffe also studied Oxvirtually all animal cells in order to ygen-dependent regulation of the convert their food into useful energy. hormone erythropoietin gene,& both Otto Warburg, the 1931 Nobel Prize research groups found that the O2 in Physiology or Medicine recipient, sensing mechanism was present in revealed that this conversion is an en- virtually all tissues, not only in the kidney cells where hormone erythrozymatic process. During the evolution, mechanisms poietin is normally produced. These developed to ensure a sufficient sup- were some of the important findings ply of O2 to tissues and cells. The that came up, showing that the mechcarotid body which is adjacent to anisms were general & functional in large blood vessels on both sides of many different cells and their types. the neck contains the specialized cells that sense the blood’s O2 levels. Semenza had wished to identify the The 1938 Nobel Prize in Physiolo- cellular components that are medigy/ Medicine to Corneille Heymans ating this response. In the cultured awarded discoveries showing how liver cells, he actually discovered a blood O2 sensing via the carotid body protein complex that can bind to the controls the respiratory rate by com- identified DNA segment in an O2-de-

pendent manner. Semenza called this complex as a hypoxia-inducible factor (HIF). Extensive efforts to purify the hypoxia-inducible factor complex began in 1995 and Semenza was able to publish some of his study key findings, including identification of the genes encoding Hypoxia-Inducible Factor. The HIF was found to consist of 2 different DNA-binding proteins, so-called transcription factors, now named hypoxia-inducible factor HIF1α & ARNT. The research team could begin solving the puzzle, allowing them to understand which are the additional components that were actually involved & how the machinery works. When O2 levels are high, cells contain very little HIF-1α. However, when O2 levels are low, the amount of HIF-1α increases so that it can bind to and thus regulate the hormone erythropoietin gene as well as other genes with HIF-binding DNA segments. Several research teams showed that HIF-1α, which is normally rapidly degraded, is protected from degradation in hypoxia. At normal O2 levels, a cellular machine called the proteasome, recognized by Aaron Ciechanover, Avram Hershko and Irwin Rose-the 2004 Nobel Prize in Chemistry-, degrades HIF-1α. And under such conditions, a small peptide called ubiquitin is actually added to the HIF-1α protein. The ubiquitin peptide functions as a tag for proteins destined for degradation in the proteasome. How ubiquitin binds to HIF-1α in an O2-dependent manner remained a central question.

The answer to this came from an unexpected direction. At about the same time as Semenza & Ratcliffe were exploring the regulation of the hormone erythropoietin gene, cancer researcher William Kaelin, Jr. was studying on an inherited syndrome, von Hippel-Lindau’s disease (VHL disease). This genetic disease leads to a dramatically increased risk of certain cancers in families with inherited VHL mutations. Kaelin showed that von Hippel-Lindau’s disease gene encodes a protein that can prevent the onset of cancers. Kaelin also showed in the study that the cancer cells lacking a functional von Hippel-Lindau’s disease gene express abnormally high levels of the hypoxia-regulated genes. But that when the von Hippel-Lindau’s disease gene was reintroduced into the cancer cells, normal levels were actually restored. This was an important clue showing that von Hippel-Lindau’s disease gene was somehow involved in controlling the responses to hypoxia. And some additional clues came from several research groups showing that von Hippel-Lindau’s disease gene is part of a complex that labels the proteins with ubiquitin, marking the proteins for degradation in the proteasome. Ratcliffe and his research team then made a key discovery: which demonstrates that VHL can physically interact with the HIF-1α gene and it is required for

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its degradation at normal oxygen lev- was shown that the gene activating els. This conclusively linked VHL to the function of the HIF-1α gene was HIF-1α. regulated by O2-dependent hydroxylation. The Nobel Laureates had eluciMany pieces had actually fallen into dated the oxygen sensing mechanism place, but what was still lacking was & had shown how it works. an understanding of how oxygen levels regulate the interaction between Thanks to the groundbreaking reVHL & HIF-1α genes. The search search work of these Nobel Laureates, was focused on a specific portion of we know much more about how difthe HIF-1α protein known to be im- ferent O2 levels regulate fundamental portant for VHL-dependent degra- physiological processes. O2-sensing dation, & both Kaelin and Ratcliffe allows cells to adapt their metabosuspected that the key to Oxygen lism to low O2 levels: for example, in sensing resided somewhere in this our muscles during intense exercise. protein domain. In the year 2001, in Other examples of adaptive processtwo simultaneously published articles es controlled by O2 sensing include the team showed that under normal the generation of new blood vessels O2 levels, hydroxyl groups are add- & the production of RBCs. Our imed at 2 specific positions in HIF-1α. mune system & many other physioThis protein modification is called logical functions are also fine-tuned prolyl hydroxylation and it allows the by the Oxygen-sensing machinery. VHL gene to recognize & bind to the O2 sensing has even been shown to HIF-1α gene and thus explained how be essential during fetal development the normal oxygen levels control rap- for controlling normal blood vessel id HIF-1α degradation with the help formation and placenta development. of O2-sensitive enzymes (so-called prolyl hydroxylases). Further studies O2 sensing is central to a large numby Ratcliffe & others identified the ber of diseases. For example, patients responsible prolyl hydroxylases. It with chronic renal failure often suffer

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from severe anemia due to decreased hormone erythropoietin expression. Hormone erythropoietin is produced by cells in the kidney and is essential for controlling the formation of red blood cells, as explained above. Moreover, O2-regulated machinery has an important role in cancer. In tumors, the O2-regulated machinery is utilized to stimulate blood vessel for-

mation & to reshape metabolism for effective proliferation of cancer cells. The intense ongoing efforts in academic labs & pharmaceutical companies are now focused on developing drugs that can actually interfere with the different disease states by either activating/ blocking, the O2-sensing machinery.


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MIT Researchers To Model Alzheimer’s Disease On A Chip! Due to the complexity of Alzheimer’s disease, it has been challenging for researchers to recreate the condition in the lab. Alzheimer’s affects many types of cells in the brain, including its blood vessels. WITH A NEW 5.6 MILLION DOLLAR, FIVE-YEAR GRANT FROM THE NATIONAL INSTITUTES OF HEALTH (NIH), MIT NEUROSCIENTISTS AT THE PICOWER INSTITUTE FOR LEARNING AND MEMORY WILL DEVELOP AN INTEGRATED “BRAIN-ON-A-CHIP.” By Rahul Mishra

This will be done to model the disease’s complexity with novel technologies. This will provide a powerful tool for personalized disease and treatment. The lab of Picower Professor Li-Huei Tsai will develop its miBrain-chip platform. It will start from a crucial component that Alzheimer’s models typically omit- blood vessels that replicate the function of the blood-brain barrier, which stringently filters the material that enters or leaves the brain through the circulatory system. Tsai lab postdoc- Joel Blanchard successfully engineered and validated such an in vitro blood-brain barrier (BBB) from patient-derived stem cells. He was also successful in making a version with the Alzheimer’s risk gene variant APOE4. It showed that it recapitulates the same vascular problems, like cerebral amyloid angiopathy, seen in Alzheimer’s patients. In collaboration with the lab of Robert Langer, David H. Koch Institute Professor in the Departments of Chemical Engineering and Biological Engineering and the Koch Institute at MIT, Tsai and Blanchard will integrate the blood-brain barrier (BBB) into a chip system including the primary cell types of neurons, microglia immune cells, and oligodendrocytes. These maintain the efficiency of neural circuits through a process called myelination. The brain’s immune response and myelination both appear to be compromised by Alzheimer’s disease. Blanchard said that this new model includes most of the cell types of the human brain. Henceforth, it will provide insight into how they interact and how those interactions change during the progression of Alzheimer’s.

In the first two years of the research, the team will develop and validate the chip platform’s ability to replicate both healthy and diseased states. If that’s successful, researchers will then begin to use it for different kinds of experiments.

dividuals without any condition of Alzheimer’s. They will work with Professor Manolis Kellis from MIT’s Computer Science Department to build computational models that track changes in cell dynamics, gene expression, and other crucial data. With this technique, researchers can track According to the idea proposed in and analyze the disease progression the grant, the team will make mi- in the chip system. After that, they Brain-chips from tissue samples of will compare it to related data in the patients who lived with Alzheimer’s individuals’ medical histories. Redisease and a group of healthy in- searchers can also examine the effects

of potential treatment interventions in copies of those systems and track their impact. According to the grant abstract, this study will yield insight into Alzheimer’s disease development. It will also create a platform for discovery and efficacy screening of therapeutics. The system, once developed, would allow for other similar experiments, which will help in personalized and better treatment.


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October 15th, 2019 Vol. 03 NO 100

China Grows A Cotton Plant On the Far Side Of The Moon China has broken new lunar ground by successfully growing cotton on the moon for the first time. This experiment was part of the Chang’e 4 project, in which China is trying to explore the far side of the moon. IT IS THE SAME LANDER THAT RECENTLY DISCOVERED A MYSTERIOUS GEL-LIKE SUBSTANCE ON THE MOON’S SURFACE. By Ria Roy

A cotton plant was one of several organisms encased in a mini biosphere weighing about 2.6 kilograms i.e, 5.7 lbs with a pressure of 1 atmosphere which was aboard the lander. These organisms experienced an environment largely similar to that on Earth, however, organisms did have to contend with both space radiation & microgravity. In an interview given to an engineering magazine IEEE Spectrum, Xie Gengxin who is the project leader for the experiment explained more about the challenges of growing plants in a restricted environment. Chang’e-4 probe’s weight demanded that the weight [of the experiment] cannot exceed 3 kilograms, he said. That is why it was important to select the biological samples in the experiment carefully. In the end, the research team select-

ed 5 species of biological organisms to send to the moon including Cotton seeds, arabidopsis seeds, potato seeds, yeast & fruit-fly eggs. Most of these died quickly. But the cotton seeds sprouted & grew not one but 2 leaves. Though plants have been grown before on the International Space Station, this experiment marks the first time ever a plant has been grown on the moon.

which is equivalent to 2 weeks here on Earth. And during the lunar night, the temperatures on the moon drop dramatically, & without external heating, these organisms were doomed by the cold. In order to test whether the equipment could survive, the Chinese researchers continued the experiment for several months.

oxygen. Xie explained even though it is very meaningful to choose tortoise, the oxygen inside the payload can only be used for about twenty days for turtles.

In future experiments, Xie and his research team want to send more complex organisms to the moon including animals. And they may get a Originally, the research team had chance with China’s Chang’e 6 miswanted to send animals as part of sion which is scheduled for the early Despite the hardy cotton’s best ef- the experiments including a small 2020s. forts in the moon, the leaves of the tortoise. This idea got scrapped due plant died within one lunar day, to the moon‘s limited availability of


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Govt To Launch Climate Vulnerability Map of India Soon Rising sea levels, rainfall patterns, an increasing number of extreme weather events, changing temperature and urban floods. Such impacts of climate change are now being felt in many parts of the country and it is not just coastal areas or hilly regions. IN ORDER TO PREPARE COMMUNITIES & PEOPLE TO MEET THE CHALLENGES ARISING OUT OF SUCH CLIMATE CHANGES, INFORMATION SPECIFIC TO A STATE OR EVEN THE DISTRICT IS NEEDED BECAUSE SUCH IMPACTS OF CLIMATE CHANGE AREN’T UNIFORM. By Ria Roy

To meet this current need, a pan India climate vulnerability assessment map is being developed. This map is being developed under a joint project of the Department of Science & Technology and the Swiss Agency for Development & Cooperresearch program of DST was being ation (SDC). implemented (part of the National Mission for Sustaining the HimalaDr. Akhilesh Gupta, the head of the yan Ecosystem (NMSHE) & National climate change program at DST while Mission on Strategic Knowledge for speaking at a national media consultaClimate Change (NMSKCC)). And tion on climate change said that such among the priority areas identified climate vulnerability atlas has already for research are glaciology, urban been developed for twelve states in climate, climate modeling, extreme the Indian Himalayan Region, using a events, and Himalayan ecosystem common framework. This methodolstudies. Climate change cells have ogy will be extended to the Non-Himbeen in twenty-five states in the counalayan states so that we can have a try and centers of excellence are also national-level climate vulnerability being established in these states for profile for India. The climate vulneracapacity building. bility atlas is expected to be ready by the middle of 2020, he added. Climate risk is an interplay of hazard, vulnerability, and exposure. Dr. Gupta said that using a common While the occurrences of natural hazmethodology for assessing the vulnerards such as landslides, droughts & ability of the country was critical for floods are projected to go up, their comparison and also for the planning impacts depend on the level of expoadaptation strategies. Atlas also helps sure such as the presence of people & in identifying what makes a state/disinfrastructure in areas that could be trict vulnerable to climate change. adversely affected/climate-sensitive livelihood of people. The vulnerability map/ atlas for hilly states, released in March earlier this Dr. Anamika Barua, IIT Guwahati, year, showed that while all the Himwho led the vulnerability assessment alayan states are vulnerable, Assam project for the Himalayan region, ex& Mizoram are the most vulnerable plained that vulnerability is the proamong them. The climate vulnerapensity to be adversely affected & it bility map for the Himalayan region, can be measured in terms of both bideveloped in consultation with states, ophysical and socioeconomic factors. includes details up to the district levAnd addressing vulnerability can help el. This national map will also do the reduce risk to climate change. same, as a vulnerability within a state may differ from one region to another Among the socio-economic & deor district to another. And a common mographic factors that determine vulset of indicators will be used vulnernerability is population density; per ability profile & ranking of 650 discapita income; livestock to human tricts all over the country. ratio; percentage marginal farmers; the number of primary healthcare Dr. Gupta said the climate change

centers; and percentage of women in the overall workforce. Similarly, the sensitivity of agricultural production is captured by indicators like percentage area under irrigation; percentage area under horticulture crops; yield variability. Dr. Mustafa Ali Khan- Indian Himalayas Climate Adaptation Programme- said that some of the states had already started using the vulner-

ability assessment report, particularly while revising state climate action plans and developing adaptation projects. Mizoram has launched a statewide public awareness campaign on the basis of the assessments, while West Bengal has developed a decision support system to prioritize spring shed management project sites using the climate vulnerability map as an input.


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‘Substance P’ Marker In Tears Could Detect Diabetes Complication We have heard of blood tests & stool samples. Tear samples might be the next-screening method to enter your doctor’s office, a new research study from UNSW, Sydney, suggests. TEAR TESTING MAY BE THE FUTURE OF SCREENING FOR DIABETIC PERIPHERAL NEUROPATHY WHICH IS A DEBILITATING CONDITION THAT AFFECTS PEOPLE WITH DIABETES, A NEW STUDY FROM UNSW SYDNEY SUGGESTS. By Ria Roy

This study, recently published in The Ocular Surface, is the first to show that peripheral nerve damage which is often the earliest sign of the condition, can be traced in the tear film. Dr. Maria Markoulli who is the senior author of the research, said they have found that the people with type 1 diabetic peripheral neuropathy which can result in recurring ulcers of the feet and in severe cases require amputation, have reduced levels of a protein known as ‘substance P’ in their tear film. She added that 119,000 Australians have type 1 diabetes. And in the future, they may be able to have a quick tear sample collected either at their optometrist or the chemist, GP or endocrinologist & be told whether they are at risk. Peripheral neuropathy is one of the most common complications of diabetes & affects almost 50% of diabetics. This occurs when chronically

high blood sugar damages the nerves that connect the brain & spinal cord to the rest of the body parts. The symptoms include pain, numbness, weakness, pins, imbalance, and needles, & recurring foot ulcers. While the nerve damage cannot be reversed, early detection can help patients better manage this condition & also to prevent further complications. Current early testing options are limited to the invasive examinations, such as skin biopsies. Dr. Markoulli said that peripheral neuropathy is notoriously difficult to detect early on & it requires special training. What the team proposing with this method is something that

will be done quickly, non-invasively & potentially could be done even by a non-specialist. The scientists tested the concentration of 2 proteins called neuropeptides, in the tear film of people with type 1 & type 2 diabetes compared to control groups. The research study consisted of almost 100 participants. While the team found that those with type 1 diabetic peripheral neuropathy had less ‘substance P’ protein in their tear film, the results didn’t suggest that type 2 diabetes has the same biomarkers. This is because these diseases have different pathologies& risk factors, writes Ph.D. candidate & lead author of the research, Mr. Shy-

am Sunder Tummanapalli. Dr. Markoulli added that it tells us that the 3 disease processes are quite different. Dr. Markoulli is eager to expand the study to determine specific changes in type 2 diabetes. What proteins change there? Is there also a link to the tear film and peripheral neuropathy? While the study results are promising for those with type 1 diabetes, further study is required before tear testing becomes available clinically. In particular, the researchers hope to study ‘substance P’ loss over time according to varying severities of peripheral neuropathy.


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First-Ever Video Of Virus Assembly Recorded By Researchers Researchers have now captured images of the formation of individual viruses- for the first time ever- offering a real-time view of the kinetics of viruses formation and its assembly. THE RESEARCH STUDY PROVIDES NEW INSIGHTS INTO HOW TO FIGHT AGAINST VIRUSES & ENGINEER SELF-ASSEMBLING PARTICLES. By Ria Roy

This study is published in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences. Vinothan Manoharan, Wagner Family Professor of Chemical Engineering and Professor of Physics- Harvard John A. Paulson School of Engineering and Applied Sciences– said that structural biology has been able to resolve the structures of viruses with amazing resolution, down to every atom in every protein; Still, we did not know how that structure assembles itself. This new technique gives the first window into how viruses assemble & also reveals the kinetics as well as the pathways in quantitative detail.

where their interaction is very weak.

To observe the viruses, the scientists used an optical technique known as interferometric scattering microscopy. This is a technique where the light scattered off an object creates a dark spot in a larger field of light. This technique does not reveal the virus’s Manoharan is the co-director of the structure but it does reveal its size & Quantitative Biology Initiative, a how that size changes with time. cross-Harvard effort that brings together biology, novel measurement Scientists attached viral RNA strands techniques, statistics & mathematto a substrate, like stems of a flower, ics to develop causal and predictive & flowed proteins over the surface. mathematical models of biological Then, by using the interferometric systems. microscope, researchers watched as dark spots appeared & grew steadiManoharan and his research team ly darker until they were the size of focused on single-stranded RNA vifull-grown viruses. And by recording ruses (ssRNA Viruses) which are the intensities of those growing spots, the most abundant type of virus on the team could actually determine how planet. In humans RNA viruses are many proteins were actually attaching responsible for West Nile fever, polio, to each RNA strand over time. gastroenteritis, hand, foot, & mouth disease, and the common cold. Manoharan said one thing the team noticed immediately is that the intenRNA viruses tend to be very simsity of all the spots started low & then ple. Manoharan and his research team shot up to the intensity of a full virus. studied the virus, which infects E. And that shooting up happened at difcoli bacteria, is about 30 nm in diamferent times. Some of the capsids aseter & has one piece of RNA, with sembled in under a minute, some took about 3600 nucleotides, & 180 iden2 or 3mins & some took more than tical proteins. These proteins arrange 5mins. But once they started assemthemselves into hexagons & pentabling, they did not backtrack. They gons to form a soccer-ball-like strucgrew & grew and then they were ture around the RNA which is called done, he explained. a capsid. How did those proteins manage to form those structures? Till now, no one had been able to observe viral assembly in real-time because viruses & their components are very small

The team compared these observations to that of the previous results from simulations, which predicted 2 types of assembly pathways. In the first type of pathway, the proteins first

stick randomly to the RNA & then rearrange themselves into a capsid. And in the second, a critical mass of proteins, called a nucleus, must form before the capsid can grow. The experimental results matched the second pathway & ruled out the first. Nucleus actually forms at different times for different viruses; And once it does, the viruses grow quickly & does not stop until it reaches its right size. The team also noticed that the viruses tended to misassemble more often when there were more proteins flowing over the substrates. Viruses that assemble in this way will have to balance the formation of the nuclei with the growth of the capsid. And if the nuclei form too quickly, complete capsids cannot grow. This observation might give us some insights into how to derail the assem-

bly of these pathogenic viruses, said Manoharan. How these individual proteins come together to form the nucleus is still an open question but now that experimentalists have identified the pathway, scientists can develop new models that can explore assembly within that pathway. And those models might also be useful for the designing of nanomaterials – that assemble themselves. It is a good example of quantitative biology, in that we actually have the experimental results which can be described by a mathematical model, said Manoharan. The research was co-authored by Aaron M. Goldfain & Rees F. Garmann. This study was supported by the National Science Foundation, the National Institutes of Health, and the Simons Foundation.

The dark spots seen above are individual viruses. The spots grow darker as more and more proteins attach to the RNA strand. (Video courtesy of Manoharan lab)


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October 15th, 2019 Vol. 03 NO 100

Scientists Find How AIDS Pathogens Multiply In Body

In order to treat diseases better, it is important to understand how they arise. An European team led by Prof. Christian Eggeling from the Friedrich Schiller University Jena, the Leibniz Institute of Photonic Technology (Leibniz IPHT) & the University of Oxford has now succeeded in using the high-resolution imaging technique to make visible to the millisecond how the HIV spreads between the living cells and also to find out which molecules it requires for this purpose. USING A SUPERRESOLUTION STED FLUORESCENCE MICROSCOPY, THE SCIENTISTS PROVIDE DIRECT PROOF FOR THE FIRST TIME THAT THE AIDS PATHOGENS CREATE A CERTAIN LIPID ENVIRONMENT FOR ITS REPLICATION. By Ria Roy

Christian Eggeling said that his team has thus created a method for investigating how this multiplication can potentially be prevented. His team has published the results of their research study on the multiplication of AIDS pathogens in journal Science Advances on October 2, 2019. The scientists focused on the sluice through which the Human Immunodeficiency Virus emerges from the cell after having infected the plasma membrane of the host cell. These viruses used the protein Gag as a marker, that co-ordinates the processes involved in the maturation of the virus. Christian Eggeling explained that where this protein accumulates, the decisive processes take place that leads to the HIV releasing itself and infecting other cells. In order to find these, the scientists examined the diffusion at this budding site of the HIV virus particle. Scientists found out that only certain lipids interact with the virus. Although these lipid environments were already known in principle, the team was able to prove this interaction directly in the living and infected cells for the first time. Christian Eggeling said that this provides a potential target for antiviral drugs. he further added that knowing which molecules the Human Immunodeficiency Virus needs in order to leave the cell & multiply is a crucial prerequisite for investigating how this can actually be prevented. With this technology, researchers can now follow this direction. Christian Eggeling and his research team now want to develop antibodies that attack precisely these molecules and thus suppress the spread of the Human Immunodeficiency Virus. Eggeling, describing his research program, said that the team not only wanted to study the antibodies from a medical point of view but also want-

ed to find out how their biophysical interaction can be used to enhance their efficacy. And for this purpose, his team analyzed biological processes namely the interaction of cells and molecules with the help of physical parameters such as diffusions. One year ago, the physicist moved from Oxford to Jena. And in addition to his professorship for Superresolution Microscopy at the university, he heads the research department of Biophysical Imaging at Leibniz IPHT. He also leads his research team at the MRC Human Immunology Unit & at the Wolfson Imaging Centre of the Weatherall Institute of Molecular Medicine at Oxford University.

Eggeling combines the spatial superresolution fluorescence microscopy techniques with methods that enable the movement of labeled molecules to be tracked in real-time in order to understand how diseases actually develop at the smallest molecular level. This enables him and his team of scientists to investigate individual molecules, for example, in cell membranes in living cells spatially and temporally. This enables the research team to reveal cellular mechanisms at the molecular level that is far too fast for previous investigation methods and also run on spatial scales that are far too small, he added.

Christian Eggeling has already done studies on new superresolution fluorescence microscopic techniques at the Max Planck Institute for Biophysical Chemistry in the team of Stefan W. Hell. Together with Eric Betzig & William E. Moerner, Stefan Hell received the Nobel Prize for Chemistry in the year 2014. And in Jena, Eggeling is now working closely with the biologists and physicians to find out how these methods can be actually used to detect diseases earlier and more accurately and possibly even prevent them.


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Novartis Collaborates With Microsoft to Transform Medicine With AI Novartis announced an important step in reimagining drugs by founding the Novartis Artificial Intelligence innovation lab and also by selecting Microsoft Corporation as its strategic Artificial Intelligence and data science partner for this effort. THE NEW LAB HAS FORMED WITH AN AIM TO SIGNIFICANTLY BOLSTER NOVARTIS ARTIFICIAL INTELLIGENCE CAPABILITIES FROM RESEARCH STUDIES THROUGH COMMERCIALIZATION AND HELP TO ACCELERATE THE DISCOVERY AND DEVELOPMENT OF TRANSFORMATIVE MEDICINES FOR PATIENTS WORLDWIDE. By Ria Roy

Novartis is now looking to put AI tools on the desktops of each of its research associates, & it’s tapping Microsoft to do it. A new 5-year collaboration between the two companies will help the Big Pharma establish an Artificial Intelligence innovation lab alongside joint research projects at multiple international centers run by both companies, spanning research, clinical trials, and manufacturing. As Novartis Collaborates with Microsoft, they have committed to a multi-year R&D effort. This strategic alliance will actually focus on 2 core objectives: Artificial Intelligence Empowerment. The new lab will aim to bring the power of Artificial Intelligence to the desktop of every Novartis associate. And by bringing together vast amounts of Novartis datasets with Microsoft’s advanced Artificial Intelligent solutions, the lab will aim to create new Artificial Intelligence models and applications that can augment its associates’ capabilities to take on the next wave of challenges in the medicine. Artificial Intelligence Exploration. The new lab will use the power of Artificial Intelligence to tackle some of the hardest computational challenges within the life sciences field, starting with generative chemistry, image segmentation and also analysis for smart and personalized delivery of therapies, optimization of cell & gene therapies at scale. Microsoft & Novartis will also collaborate to develop & apply next-generation Artificial Intelligence platforms and processes that support future programs across these two focus areas. The overall investment includes project funding, technology,

subject-matter experts, and tools. Their partnership will start with 3 specific projects: implementing AIbased approaches to help personalize medical treatments for macular degeneration & irreversible blindness, including through image segmentation and analysis, starting with treatments for acute lymphoblastic leukemia such as Kymriah, increasing the efficiency of cell and gene therapy manufacturing, & expediting Novartis’ processes for designing and generating new therapeutic drug molecules. Vas Narasimhan the CEO of Novartis, said that Novartis continues evolving into a focused medicine company powered by advanced therapy platforms & data science, alliances like this will help them deliver on their purpose to reimagine medicine to improve and to extend lives. Pairing their knowledge of human biology & medicine with Microsoft’s leading expertise in AI could transform the way Novartis discover & develop medicines for the world. Microsoft CEO, Satya Nadella, added that this strategic alliance will combine Novartis’ life sciences expertise with the power of Azure & Microsoft AI. They aim to address some of the biggest challenges facing the life sciences industry today and bring out the AI capabilities to every Novartis employee so that they can unlock new insights as Novartis work to discover new medicines and reduce patient costs.

Novartis is now focusing itself as a leading medicines company powered by advanced therapies & data science. “Going big on data and digital” is the key strategic pillar that helps them realize this ambition. Data science & digital technologies allow a company to reimagine how it innovates in its Research and Development, engages with patients and customers & increases operational efficiencies. Now, Novartis also focuses its efforts around 4 strategic digital priority areas:

order to use Artificial Intelligence at scale in any organization, it is important to enabling the ‘citizen data scientists’ with the power of AI.

• Scaling twelve digital lighthouse projects: Build a strong foundation and jumpstart digital transformation • Make Novartis digital by sharing, learning & talent acquisition • Becoming the #1 partner in the tech ecosystem; bridge Novartis with external expertise. • Bolder moves that can lead through future disruptive healthcare scenarios with large-scale partnerships

Peter Lee, corporate vice president for Microsoft Healthcare, in a company blog post, mentioned that because many of these advances are based on the ability to analyze huge amounts of data in new ways, developing new drugs has become as much an AI and data science problem as it is a biology and chemistry problem. This means companies like Novartis need to become data science companies to an extent never seen before.

Microsoft’s AI solutions will also aim to translate the drugmaker’s large clinical and scientific data sets into information Novartis staff can easily query from their desks, even without specialized backgrounds in data science. Ebadollahi said that the Artificial Intelligence empowerment is a core element of this alliance. Its aim is to integrate AI-enabled insights into the workflow of how our associates do their work; he further added that in

Artificial Intelligence-based tools and machine learning models will be injected into Novartis’ various workflows, culling data behind the scenes to build a broader picture of the topic at hand, and then summarizing and presenting relevant data to aid in daily decisionmaking within the company, he added.

One of the priority areas within Novartis is a project called data42, a machine learning platform, designed to mine the company’s silos of data for patterns, targets, and biomarkers across its Research and Development programs. Novartis is also working on developing tools for remotely conducted clinical trials, Ebadollahi said, by using digital solutions to access underserved patient populations, as well as building digital therapeutics.


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Researchers Uses CRISPR To Give ‘Monarch Flies’ Superpowers Every year monarch butterflies migrate from the northern reaches of Canada to the Gulf Coast. Scientists are fascinated by several facets of this mysterious journeyfrom how it shapes monarch development to where, exactly, these astonishing flies end up. NEW RESEARCH HELPS EXPLAIN ONE ASPECT OF THE ENIGMATIC TREK—HOW THE INSECTS EVOLVED THE ABILITY TO TURN THEMSELVES TOXIC, WHICH KEEPS THEM FROM GETTING EATEN EN ROUTE. By Rahul Mishra

During the caterpillar stage, monarchs feed on milkweed. That diet is sufficient even to kill most animals. The plants produce cardiac glycosides, which disable the sodium pumps that cells use to regulate salt levels. For species with heart, this can result in cardiac arrest. But monarch butterflies never digest the toxins. Instead, they carry the cardiac glycosides inside their bodies, in a process called sequestration. Milkweed plants have evolved toxicity precisely so most insects won’t eat them. This gives them the benefit of survival—access to a food source without much competition. It also renders them toxic to potential predators.

Researchers used the CRISPR techniques to edit three mutations into a single fruit fly gene known to control the sodium pump. Two of the modifications, which prevent cardiac glycosides from binding to the pump. But those two mutations made the fruit flies far more prone to seizures. Adding a third, previously-unidentified mutation to the mix helped to compensate for the harmful impacts of the other two.

Monarch butterflies handle milkweed better than the rest and giving The thrice-mutated “monarch fruit flies the same genetic resistance flies” were as resistant to milkweed could help reveal why the butterflies toxins as monarch butterflies, and can do so. 1000-times less sensitive to it than their wild counterparts. CRISPR For Fruitflies- The experiment They also carry the toxin with them

from their larval stage to adulthood. It’s the first time scientists have used CRISPR to study evolution by actually recreating the development of a specific trait—in this case, toxin resistance. The research demonstrates the way the three mutations work together to allow the monarch flies to eat otherwise-poisonous milkweed CRISPR For Fruitflies- Planning for future University of California biologist and study scientist Noah Whiteman says that this is also a cautionary tale about CRISPRing animals. The fruit flies, even with three mu-

tations, are susceptible to external motion: If you bang the test tube they’re flying in, they fall and take almost 2 minutes to get airborne again. Whiteman and his team of researchers are working on figuring out why that’s not true for monarch butterflies. According to scientists, the monarch butterflies may have off-target mutations. This means that CRISPR edited some as-yet-unidentified random genes along with the ones his team sought to tweak. This study is a stark reminder that we’re a long way off from solving all our own species’ problems with genetic engineering.

Artificial Guts : New Way to Explore Human Microbiome? Microbiome- a collection of trillions of bacteria that reside in & on our bodies. Each individual’s microbiome is unique just like a fingerprint and scientists are finding more & more ways in which it impacts our health and our daily lives. One of the examples involves an apparent link between the brain & the bacteria in the gut. THE BRAIN-GUT “AXIS” IS BELIEVED TO INFLUENCE CONDITIONS LIKE PARKINSON’S DISEASE, DEPRESSION, & IRRITABLE BOWEL SYNDROME. By Ria Roy

However, many research studies into the brain-gut axis have stalled because of one central problem. That is the lack of an adequate testable model of the gut.

Currently, available testing platforms cannot emulate the human gut accurately & cheaply enough for large-scale studies. The worldwide research community needs something new, which is what a research team of MIT Lincoln Laboratory is tackling now in a project funded through the Technology Office. Scientists there aim to create a perfect artificial gut. Todd Thorsen, the project’s principal investigator from the Biological

& Chemical Technologies Group, said that the question from the mechanical side is, how to emulate the colon. Bacteria in the colon occupies a lot of ecological niches. Thorsen is referring to the complexity of our human gut, which includes a community of 100 trillion microbes that all have specific, & sometimes clashing, needs. Certain types of bacterias in the gut will actually die in the presence of oxygen, while others

need it to survive. The gut also contains both hard & soft mucus that allows different types of bacterias to grow. And all of these conditions need to be mimicked in a single platform for properly maintaining & testing microbiome samples, but that is not an easy task. David Walsh from the Biological &

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Chemical Technologies Group, who led the device’s development & fabrication. Until now, no one has actually been able to culture a microbiome sample and maintain it,” said that if it is possible to maintain a culture, we can do things like add toxins & therapeutics to see how they change the culture over time.

components of the platform emulate the essential oxygen & mucosal gradients. Air diffuses through the plastic while blue ports allow the research team to change the local oxygen concentration at different positions within the adjacent microculture chambers. And both the components implement careful geometry to yield the precise conIn order to address this problem, the ditions found in the gut. lab team developed a multi-material platform made of permeable silicon Walsh added that the final system rubber & other plastics, such as pol- will allow the team to tackle reystyrene, all of which are cheap & al-world problems. The problems, in that can be rapidly prototyped. The 2 addition to unraveling the brain-gut

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actually added. The goal of this is to correlate how changes in the microbiome caused by exposure to certain toxins may induce Parkinson’s like This year, the team is partnering nerve damages. with the University of Alabama at Birmingham, Northeastern Universi- The lab will also continue advancing ty & the University of California to other aspects of the project. Some of implement the first tests of microbi- the examples include building a tuome samples to study links to Par- bular core-shell origami-like gut that kinson’s disease. The lab’s role is to rolls up during assembly to emulate use the artificial gut to culture mi- the colon & the surrounding vascularcrobiome samples taken from people ized tissue and developing modeling with & without Parkinson’s disease software to predict how microbial and test what happens when differ- communities might change over time. ent suspected adverse influencers are axis, includes developing resilience to current & emerging pathogens, combating biological warfare, & more.

Warning! Environmental Toxins Impairs Immune System Over Multiple Generations New research shows that maternal exposure to a common form of industrial pollution can harm the immune system of offspring. This impairment is passed along to subsequent generations, weakening the body’s defenses against common infections. THE STUDY WAS PERFORMED AT THE UNIVERSITY OF ROCHESTER MEDICAL CENTER‘S DEPARTMENT OF ENVIRONMENTAL MEDICINE. IT WAS LEAD BY PAIGE LAWRENCE, PH.D By Rahul Mishra

Dr. Lawrence said that in terms of the body’s ability to fights off infections, this study suggests that a person may also be affected by what their grandparents ate.

some of this variation, they do not fully account for the diversity of responses to flu infection found in the general population. While explaining the role of vaccines, Dr. Lawarance said that when an individual receives a flu vaccine, the immune system escalates the production of specific kinds of white blood cells in response. The larger the response, the larger the ‘army of white blood cells’ would be produced by the body. This leads to an enhanced ability of the body to fight off an infection successfully.

While other studies over the years have suggested that environmental Environmental Toxins Impairs exposure to pollutants have adverse Immunity- The Research Methodeffects on the reproductive, respiraology tory, and nervous system function across multiple generations, the latest In the research, scientists exposed study shows for that the immune syspregnant mice to environmentally tem is impacted as well. relevant levels of a chemical called dioxin. They are like polychlorinated Environmental Toxins Impairs biphenyls (PCBs), which is a comImmunity- Clues To Unanswered mon by-product of industrial proQuestions duction and waste incineration. Dioxin is also found in some consumer According to scientists, this mulproducts. These chemicals find their tigenerational weakening of the imway into the food system where humune system could help explain mans eventually consume them. Divariations that are observed during oxins and PCBs bio-accumulate as seasonal and pandemic flu episodes. they move up the food chain and are found in higher concentrations in aniAnnual flu vaccines provide some mal-based food products. people with more protection than others. Also, during pandemic flu outThe scientists found that the producbreaks, some people get severely ill, tion and function of cytotoxic T cellswhile others can fight off the infecA white blood cells that defend the tion. body against foreign pathogens was impaired when the mice were infectWhile age, virus mutations, and othed with influenza A virus. er factors can explain, to some extent,

In the research, scientists exposed pregnant mice to environmentally relevant levels of a chemical called dioxin. They are like polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs), which is a common by-product of industrial production and waste incineration. Dioxin is also found in some consumer products. These chemicals find their way into the food system where humans eventually consume them. Dioxins and PCBs bio-accumulate as they move up the food chain and are found in higher concentrations in animal-based food products. The scientists found that the production and function of cytotoxic T cellsA white blood cells that defend the body against foreign pathogens was impaired when the mice were infected with influenza A virus.

Environmental Toxins Impairs Immunity- The Hypothesis The scientists believe that the impairment is something to do with genetics. Dioxin binds to a protein in cells called AHR, consequently leading to errors in the transcription of genetic instructions. According to the authors of the paper, the exposure to these harmful chemicals itself does not trigger a genetic mutation. Instead, the cellular machinery by which genes are expressed is effected, and this phenomenon is passed onto subsequent generations. The study was supported by funding from the National Institute of Environmental Health Science.


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DARPA Grant $6.3 Million to Help Researchers Develop “Intelligent Spinal Interface” Brown University scientists, surgeons from Rhode Island Hospital & private partners will develop and to test a device which aims at bridging the gap in neural circuitry created by spinal cord injury, in the hope of restoring the muscle control and sensation. THIS PROJECT IS SUPPORTED BY A NEW GRANT OF $6.3 MILLION FROM THE U.S. DEFENSE ADVANCED RESEARCH PROJECTS AGENCY (DARPA). By Ria Roy

A research team led by Brown University researchers will develop and test an “intelligent spinal interface” which aims at helping to restore limb movement and bladder control for people who have suffered spinal cord injuries. Developed in collaboration with surgeons at Rhode Island Hospital, Lifespan partner along with its commercial partners at Intel & Micro-Leads Medical, the experimental spinal interface will be designed in order to bridge the gap in neural circuitry, that is created by a spinal injury, the scientists said. The main idea is to record signals traveling down the spinal cord above an injury site and to use them in order to drive electrical spinal stimulation below the lesion. At the same time, information that is coming up the cord from below will be used to drive stimulation above the injury. This device could potentially help to restore both volitional control of limb muscles as well as feeling & sensation lost due to injury. David Borton who is an assistant professor at Brown’s School of Engineering & a researcher at the University Carney Institute for Brain Science who will lead the project, said the circuits around a spinal lesion often remain active and functional; the hope is that by using information from either side of a lesion in a bidirectional way, the team may make a significant impact on the treatment of these spinal cord injuries. The exploratory study aims to build the toolset i.e, the mix of hardware, software and functional understanding of the spinal cord, to make such a system possible., he added. Over the next 2 years, the team will work with Dr. Jared Fridley & the Rhode Island Hospital neurosurgery staff to recruit volunteers with any spinal cord injuries that to be implanted with an experimental interface pe-

riod of up to twenty-nine days. This device will record and stimulate the spine as patients participate in standard physical therapy for spinal injuries. It is a transformational effort that has the potential to have a significant impact on the lives of individuals with spinal cord injury, particularly for the veterans with war-related spinal cord damage, said Dr. Ziya Gokaslan who is the neurosurgeon-in-chief at Rhode Island & Miriam hospitals, clinical director of Lifespan’s Norman Prince Neurosciences Institute & chair of neurosurgery Brown’s Warren Alpert School of Medicine at Brown. Dr. Gokaslan further added that the team is very excited to be a part of this very innovative research study, which is the result of a partnership between the brilliant scientists led by Dr. Borton at Brown and the team at Rhode Island Hospital as well as their industry collaborators. The scientists will focus on signals related to control of the legs for walking & standing as well as signals related to the bladder control, the latter of which is the main concern reported by patients with spinal cord injuries. And by the end of the two-year project, the team hopes to demonstrate that this device can properly target the neural circuits which influence these activities. Borton said that the team hopes that by exploring what signals are generated by the spinal cord, how these are related to activities of daily living & how electrical modulation of the spi-

nal cord impacts these signals and its future designs of therapeutic technologies. You are reading DARPA-grant for intelligent spinal interface development A recent research study led by Borton and by teams in the U.S. and Switzerland has shown that the spinal cord stimulation can help in restoring voluntary muscle control after the spinal injury, potentially aiding in rehabilitation. The new project aims to build on the success of prior efforts using signals from the spinal cord to drive stimulation in a way that more closely resembles natural signaling processes. Along with this, by making the stimulation bi-directional, this could also aid in the recovery of sensations from limbs & muscles below the injury site, as well as evolve its stimulation profile over time. Borton said what is new in this project is, it takes information from the spinal cord itself and use the same to that to drive stimulation to another part of the spinal cord; In this way, the team is taking advantage of as much intact tissue as they can, which they think could lead to open the door to wider therapeutic application of spinal cord stimulation, for example, bladder control. A key portion of this project is developing AI & machine learning tools in order to decode spinal signals recorded from the spine. To achieve this, the Brown team will work with scientists from Intel, which will ac-

tually provide hardware, software & research support for the project. Formerly through projects like the BrainGate collaboration, Brown researchers have done pioneering work in this area. This new project will surely build on that success. Naveen Rao, the corporate vice president & general manager of the AI Products Group at Intel, said that as a Ph.D. student at Brown, he investigated how to interface the brain with machines as an application. Now at Intel, they are combining their Artificial Intelligence expertise with Brown University’s cutting-edge medical research study to help solve a critical medical problem: how to reconnect the brain & spine after a major spinal injury. Thomas Serre who is an associate professor of cognitive, linguistic and psychological sciences at Brown, will work with the Artificial Intelligence team from Intel. Serre, as an expert in computer vision, brings expertise in using an understanding of a biological system in designing artificial analogs. Serre said their goal is to figure out mathematical abstractions that they can then integrate with modern machine learning architectures. he added that hope is that if they could design the models with some knowledge of

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how the spinal cord works, they will be able to develop systems that are efficient, generalizable & that can learn with less training.

of the body that need it specifically. His team developed HD64 to provide a 2-times increase in the number of therapy locations & greater pinpointing accuracy without changing the This project will actually make size of the implantable device or the use of a high-resolution spinal cord number of wires. stimulation technology developed by Micro-Leads, called HD64. Bry- In this first two year phase of the an McLaughlin, the founder & chief project, the device will make use of executive officer of Micro-Leads an external computer system in order Medical, said for many years, spinal to decode spinal signals. However, cord stimulators have led to many the team hopes that this project will unpredictable clinical outcomes due lay the groundwork for a fully imto an inherent difficulty with localiz- plantable device for long-term use ing therapies to only a particular part during rehabilitation and beyond.

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Borton said that the team is confident that what they learn in this program will inform future refinement of this system that will have a real impact on rehabilitation from spinal cord injuries.

to advancing clinical research compels their investment in this exciting work, and no group of surgeons could be more suited to this work than their world-renowned neurosurgery team, he added.

Lifespan & Rhode Island Hospital is proud to collaborate with Brown University & tech industry partners on this breakthrough technology treatment endeavor, at the leading edge of neurosciences research, said Timothy J. Babineau, M.D., president, and CEO of Lifespan. Their deep commitment to the neurosciences &

Editor’s Note: DARPA-grant for intelligent spinal interface development, Brown University scientists, surgeons from Rhode Island Hospital & private partners, DARPA-grant of $6.3 million for intelligent spinal interface.

stores.biotecnika.org


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CRISPR Grant For UC Davis- To Develop Novel Drug For Cancer Treatment The National Institute of Health has awarded UC Davis researchers $1.5 million for the first part of a project to develop a novel approach to deliver genome-editing machinery to genes responsible for a rare form of familial cancer. CRISPR IS A TECHNOLOGY THAT ALLOWS THE ALTERATION OF DNA SEQUENCES TO MODIFY GENE FUNCTION. By Rahul Mishra

The researchers want to demonstrate that this technology can be successfully packaged and delivered to target cells in a living animal. Kit S. Lam, distinguished professor, chair of the Department of Biochemistry and Molecular Medicine in the School of Medicine, and R. Holland Cheng, professor of Molecular and Cellular Biology in the College of Biological Sciences, have undertaken this project. The award is one of the significant CRISPR grants at UC Davis as part of the NIH Somatic Cell Genome Editing Consortium (SCGE). In May, UC Davis announced the launch of an NIH-funded research center dedicated to helping the nation develop safe and effective genome editing. The $9 million grant to establish the UC Davis Nonhuman Primate Testing Center for Evaluation of Somatic Cell Genome Editing Tools will serve the Consortium by supporting studies that advance the future treatment of human diseases with gene editing. CRISPR Grant For UC Davis-

The Project The new grant by the NIH enables researchers at UC Davis to test a unique delivery system that utilizes an engineered, non-infectious hepatitis E virus to orally deliver CRISPR into cells in the gastrointestinal tract of mice. They will then measure the technique’s ability to edit targeted genes. Their primary goal is to edit APC, a gene that normally suppresses tumor growth. When the gene is defective, it can cause familial polyposis, which almost always leads to colon cancer. Dr. Lam said that the major challenge is to deliver CRISPR into target cells in cancer or precancer then edit the gene. It is relatively challenging to deliver CRISPR to diseased tissues or organs in a living animal. This is

the major challenge being faced by the researchers The researchers’ multi-disciplinary approach to the effort involves varied specific areas of expertise. Lam’s combinatorial chemistry and nano delivery work will be employed to deliver the CRISPR genes to the targeted cells in the gut. The Cheng lab will create a non-toxic, non-infectious hepatitis E virus in the laboratory that can be used to encapsulate CRISPR for oral delivery to the mouse. Dr. Cheng said that with the help of the protein engineering method, a state-of-the-art cryo-electron microscope, the scientists had optimized the hepatitis E viral capsule as a nano

delivery carrier. The viral vector is capable of passing through the harsh environment of the stomach and deliver the loaded gene editors to targeted cells in the gut. David Segal, a professor in the Department of Biochemistry and Molecular Medicine and an SCGE Davis Center leader, will design the CRISPR gene-editing system. He added that the unique property of the virus would allow the team of scientists to test the delivery of both protein and nucleic acid forms of the editor. Researchers will use state-of-the-art techniques for design and analysis. This study using -CRISPR Grant For UC Davis- could lead to new treatments for diseases of the gut, including colorectal cancer.


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Doctors Create Human Liver From ScratchAfter 5 Years Of Trials Human liver in a dish! Liver, not removed from any person; but created from scratch.

DR. ALEJANDRO SOTO-GUTIÉRREZ, PITTSBURGH LIVER RESEARCH CENTER, SAID THAT IT IS NOT LIKE ‘WAHOO’ & THE NEXT MORNING YOU THINK, ‘AH, I AM GOING TO MAKE A HUMAN LIVER.’ By Ria Roy

It took almost 5 years of trial and error to create this. But using stem cells, genetics and organ cultures, tissue engineering, and a team of researchers & experts in these areas, the scientists have come up with this. Alexandra Collins, Ph.D., of the University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine explains the process of creating a human liver. Rat liver gets stripped of its own cells so that just the connective tissue of it remains. And from a small piece of human skin, the researchers pluck out stem cells & coax them into becoming human liver cells; the cells are collected. They are then injected into the chamber- called a bioreactor- where they take up residence in the empty liver of the rat. This entire process i.e, from gathering the cells to make a liver to get to that particular

point -where you have an actual mini-human liver in a bioreactor- takes several months. This system will stay alive or say viable, for only a few days. But in that very short time, the scientists can try different drugs to treat the diseased liver. Dr. Collin said it is possible to test any sort of therapeutic by simply injecting this chemical through the system. Before this system, animal

livers were playing a role in this kind of research studies but human livers did not always respond in the same way. With the development of this new system, the cells have had genetic modifications to recreate diseases like the fatty liver, a growing problem in the US. This new technology has the potential for personalized medicines. From your skin cell, they could grow your own mini-liver to figure out which medicines would work for an individual.

Dr. Soto said that he believes it is a very good biological tool to screen treatments that aren’t otherwise being tested in humans themselves because it is dangerous. As it is designed, it would be a long stretch to create livers for transplantation. We are very far away from making an actual liver. We’re probably many years away. But this is a good step, Dr. Soto added.


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Why ISRO Does Not Hire Biologists? Future Plans To Hire? For many years, man has been awed by the extent of the Universe and the secrets that it holds. Within the scientific research community in India, the one name that stands out with outstanding contributions towards this field is ISRO. INDIAN SPACE RESEARCH ORGANIZATION (ISRO) IS THE SPACE AGENCY OF THE GOVERNMENT OF INDIA. By Rashmi Sanyal

Established and modified as since 1962 as the Indian National Committee for Space Research (INCOSPAR), ISRO has the aim of space science research and planetary exploration. ISRO contributed towards building India’s first satellite, Aryabhatta, which was launched in 1975. With multiple other satellites successfully placed, followed by Chandrayaan 1, ISRO was recently in the news for its latest project on Chandrayaan 2 and Gaganyaan in the future. The prime objective of ISRO is to use space technology and discover the undiscovered. It focusses on Telecommunication, Navigation, Geographic Information systems, Resource Management, Military communications, Academic purpose, Space research, Telemedicine, Biodiversity Information System and Cartography. The bare minimum requirement to work with ISRO is a PG degree or a PhD in the field of expertise. The individual departments have their own varied requirements from Physicians, Mathematicians to Electronic, Mechanical, and Computer Science Engineers. The goal is to be able to build vehicles and satellites with tracking systems and to be able to successfully launch them, navigate and analyze the data transmitted. The prime objective of ISRO is to use space technology and discover the undiscovered. It focusses on Telecommunication, Navigation, Geographic Information systems, Resource Management, Military communications, Academic purpose, Space research, Telemedicine, Biodiversity Information System and Cartography. The bare minimum requirement to work with ISRO is a PG degree or a PhD in the field of expertise. The individual departments have their own varied requirements from Physicians, Mathematicians to Electronic, Mechanical, and Computer Science Engineers. The goal is to be able to build

vehicles and satellites with tracking systems and to be able to successfully launch them, navigate and analyze the data transmitted. “With the growing momentum to explore life on other planets and the successful start of NASA’s InSight mission on Mars, astrobiology could be India’s next frontier in space research”, – Dr. K Radhakrishnan, former chairman of the Indian Space Research Organization (ISRO) was quoted to have said at an event last year. The burgeoning field of astrobiology studies the origins, early evolution and the distribution and future of life in the universe. It is also con-

cerned with the hunt for life on other planets and other solar systems. “We are presently using artificial intelligence coded in robots. They have been defined tasks A, B, C, D” Dr. Radhakrishnan was quoted as saying by Deccan Herald. “If there is something new that they see, then there is a mechanism where they get back to the control room and we design a new set of tasks for them (based on their findings).” There is huge scope in Indian space research for projects and research in astrobiology, according to Radhakrishnan, particularly studies on the toll that traveling to space and other planets for 1,000 days or more can have on the human body.

“When humans go to Mars, there will be a need to understand what changes the human body will undergo. There is a major scope for astrobiology and students should take this subject up for future research,” he was quoted as saying. So, it is evident, that even if ISRO is not focussed on hiring Biologists at the moment, it will definitely have a requirement in the near future. To be able to contribute holistically towards scientific discoveries, it will need to focus on the biological sciences as well. For getting a chance to be hired by ISRO it is vital to have academic excellence and an aptitude for research and inventions.


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How to Choose The Perfect PhD Topic? A Must Read “Education is not the filling of a pail, but the lighting of a fire” – W.B Yeats EDUCATION HAS BEEN THE CORE OF HUMAN EXISTENCE, EVOLUTION, AND SURVIVAL. By Dr. Sunita Adak

The process of transferring information, skills and receiving it is basic education, a teaching and learning process. From ancient times humans have been teaching its descendants the knowledge it gained, the skills and many more for survival. Presently, the system has changed the form with some focusing on learning through reading writing- theoretical, some with practical and hands-on and others spiritual. Lately, people are moving away from conventional education and looking for other ways of learning like observing nature, traveling, etc. The conventional education system started with basic reading and writing, learning mathematics, sciences, etc. It gradually developed into several levels starting from pre-school to DS. Each of them has a specific curriculum to be followed to impart a specific amount of knowledge to the individual. These set patterns, subject areas and detailing, etc. varies depending on the country, society and economic status. At the lower stages education is fixed curriculum-based, but as one goes for higher education like PhD it becomes curriculum independent, where the study is based on research, observation, and analysis. This independent style of education is not taken up everyone, very few opt for. On serious contemplation the reason behind it can be attributed to the risks, the uncertainty involved and lack of any fixed direction or path. So, research-based education could be difficult but proper approach and planning can help one to overcome the adversities and gain pleasure in this learning process. Ph.D Literally, Ph.D. is an acronym for Doctor of Philosophy. In terms of academics, it is considered the highest level of educational degree after masters in a subject area. Worldwide, it is recognized as a Postgraduate degree awarded by universities, government

agencies or certain educational institutes and at times in collaborations with industries. Award of the degree requires purely dedicated, exhaustive and original research in the chosen subject area unraveling some unique knowledge, discovery, inventions or outcome in the chosen subject area, acceptance of the same in the form of research articles, patents or technology transfers and further submission of a detailed thesis or dissertation based on it. So, PhD as such has no fixed curriculum or set pattern of studies. Here one has to design the entire curriculum by oneself, right from choosing the lab, subject area, the topic for PhD, setting objectives, designing experiments, validating them, acquiring, organizing and analyzing the results, designing and writing reports, articles to present the findings to the scientific fraternity, and defend it. All these steps one can expect some guidance from the Principal Investigator, but major work and thinking must be independently done. Being a research-based degree, PhD requires years of dedicated research. Typically for full-time study it can take a minimum of 3-6 years and for part-time study it may extend for more duration. Students interested in this field of study should be prepared to spend the majority of their time in the lab and research, handling multiple projects at a time, writing papers, posters, attending conferences and even teaching and guiding bachelor/ masters project students. These all activities are part of PhD curricula envi-

sioned as training for future either in research or academics. PhD Subject Areas and Institutes One can pursue PhD in almost any and diverse subject areas viz. Biological Sciences, Biotechnology, Bioinformatics, Chemistry, Chemical engineering, Food Science, Forensic science, Intellectual Property Rights, Biomedical Engineering, Medicine and Medicinal Technology, Pharmacology, and Pharmacy, etc. There many more such subject areas, some are common, and some are rare. Ph.D scholars are one of the work forces of any research or academic institute. So, many institutes both national and international offer Ph.D degree in their academics. Ph.D course are offered by various central and state level universities. Even one can also look for private and Deemed to be universities. Apart from these the ingenious candidates can also apply in institutes of national importance – Indian Institutes of Technology (IIT), National Institutes of Technology (NIT), Indian Institutes of Science Education and Research (IISERs), Indian Institutes of Management (IIMs), All India Institutes of Medical Sciences (AIIMs), National Institutes of Pharmaceutical Education and Research (NIPERs), and CISR/ICMR/ ICAR institutes. Those interested to go abroad can look for foreign universities and research centers. Eligibility The minimum eligibility for PhD in

most institutes is having a Master level degree or honors degree that also first class. Apart from this, applicants with an individual fellowship like CSIR/UGC NET fellowship are preferred. There are several categories within the PhD program in the Institute, like with institute assistantship or individual fellowship (CSIR/UGC NET) or through sponsored research projects. Additional requirements include the Valid GATE Score or Junior Research Fellowship (JRF) of CSIR/ UGC/NBHM/DBT/ICAR/ICMR/ ICPR or DST INSPIRE Fellowship. Along with these basic requirements, candidates need to fulfill many other criteria, specifically for foreign universities and institutes. One must give proof of language proficiency in the intended language of research in the form of GRE scores, IELTS score or TOEFL score. Academic and employment references are equally required. Institutes offering PhD may ask for 2 to 3 referees who knew the candidate during their earlier academic degree like Professors/teachers or maybe the former employer. Most of the institutes both national and international also ask for a personal statement giving details about the applicant- the reason for doing PhD, why only passionate about a subject area, etc. – and research proposal. Based on all the above aspects and the candidate’s performance in written tests and interviews conducted by the institute selection is done by the concerned authority.

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CAREER ADVICE

PhD Curriculum The curriculum starts with registration according to the institute norms and for self-sponsored candidates with fellowship requires activation of fellowship by the funding agency. This is followed by allotment of Supervisor and most of the cases complete information about the available supervisors and there are of expertise is shared with the candidates and based on that they can choose. But, this may not be mandatory, it might differ among individual institutes. Often after this, a Doctoral Scrutiny Committee is created to monitor the academic progress of the candidate. Completing a course work of a specific credit score is the next step. Followed by this or might be simultaneous with the course-work candidate is required to select a research topic and start working on it with time to time review in form of presentations and report submission before the Doctoral Scrutiny Committee and the funding agency. PhD degree is awarded on the basis of satisfactory performance of a registered candidate as per the institute rules like submission of a thesis, having a specific number of publications and clearing PhD Viva-voce. PhD Topic Selection The most crucial part of PhD is topic selection. A research topic can be in the field of fundamental studies or in the application. It entirely depends on the interest and temperament of a candidate. Only interest with no groundwork could be fatal for PhD

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career, hence it is important to devel- be challenging. One can search for a op a strategy and work on it diligently project with clear objectives that can while choosing a Ph.D topic. generate unique outcomes and could be completed in the stipulated time The following steps might help a assigned for Ph.D. candidate to identify the appropriate topic. 3. Background Research: 1. Take time to decide:

After identifying the area of interest, the next step is to look for an existing knowledge or technological gap in the area, or an existing problem which hasn’t been addressed so far. This step is known as defining PhD problem. This requires a lot of background research in the area of interest. One needs to follow the past and present research going on in the field, read a lot of dissertations, reviews, research articles and attend conferences to understand the scopes and risks.

First, a candidate should devote an ample amount of time in contemplating the decision of pursuing PhD. The usual duration for PhD completion is a minimum of 3-6 years. So, it is important to fully understand the process, the amount of time and effort to be invested in it, also think of other possible career alternatives and getting advice from people experienced in the field before committing to Ph.D. It advisable to never rush into a Ph.D. One can talk to professionals in 4. Flexible: the research field, prospective guides and even candidates pursuing PhD At the initial stages it is better to be and do some amount of researching flexible and try to consider several on the current and future trends. ideas, focusing on a key central research problem. Fixing one topic may 2. Strike a balance between pas- not be very wise as most of the cases sion and practicality: as research progresses the is bound to have deviations in the research Choosing a topic in the area of inter- problem. A good researcher expects est is essential specifically when one to have unexpected outcomes, hence is supposed to work on it for the long important to be flexible, open to new term not only during PhD often it may ideas and accordingly adapt. Maybe become a part of the future career. So, one can start with a key central topic better than blindly following someone but keep considering variations in it or allowing others to make a choice as research progresses with the goal for you, one must be proactive in this of solving the research problem. matter. A topic should not only be of one’s interest even should be practi- 5. Feasibility: cal. Already much of research might have been done the area of interest, so Checking the feasibility of the secoming up with something new might lected topic is again essential. Taking

up a big, impractical and over-ambitious topic may end up badly. It is important to check the feasibility by taking stock of available resources and facilities in the concerned lab and institute, where one plans to do research. Whether one will get all that is needed to carry out the research in the same place or needs to travel or visit other institutes. If one must often spend time in travelling or visiting other labs to get some of the research work done, then it will unnecessarily take up a lot of time and energy. Here the prospective Guide can help. So, talking to Guide/PI and understanding the research trend in the lab and the available facilities could ease up the topic selection process. Conclusion Pursuing a regular PhD is full-time, long term commitment and requires planning, determination, creativity, flexibility, diligence, practicality, and positive spirit. An ideal amalgamation of passion and pragmatism makes the research encouraging and useful. Fostering ill-planned, over-ambitious and unrealistic research could be disastrous. Choosing the research topic is the most essential step which needs a lot of groundwork and planning. Equally, it is essential to have some idea about recent research, the research gaps and defined problems in the respective fields. A topic needs to be original and of practical importance with the potential to solve a knowledge gap or generate a solution to impending problems. And the utmost importance should be given to the feasibility of the research topic.


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Drug Safety Associate – Pharmacovigilance As A Career

Similar to engineering and management, the health care sector has also experienced some major changes in the past few years. In earlier times when it comes to the medical sector, people have 2 choices; either they opt for becoming a doctor or they opt for becoming a scientist. UNLIKE THOSE DAYS, NOW THINGS HAVE UNDERGONE DRASTIC CHANGES. By Divya

Students from Biology background have multiple segments as an option to build their career in, out of which one of the most trending options is Pharmacovigilance – Career as a Drug Safety Associate. In our day to day life, many of us have heard that certain drugs have been removed from the market due to its side effects, this is made possible by pharmacovigilance. Drug Safety which is otherwise known as Pharmacovigilance, is a science of studying short and long term effects of medicine on individuals. Pharmacovigilance has grown considerably as a discipline over the past 10 to 15 years. Because of its huge popularity among young generations, they are choosing their careers in this rapidly emerging & challenging sector as a Drug Safety Associate. Pharmacovigilance = pharmakon (Greek for drug) and vigilare (Latin for to keep watch). As the name indicates it basically belongs to the category of pharmacological sciences whose aim is to collect, detect, assess, understand and prevent the adverse effects, in particular, long term and short term effects of therapeutic drugs, devices, and biologics. Method Of Pharmacovigilance: • Individual Case Safety Reports • Clinical Review Of Safety Reports • Cohort Event Monitoring • Longitudinal Electronic Patient Reports • Spontaneous Recording • Periodic Safety Update Reports (Psur) • Expedited Report • Record Linkage Governing Bodies: • The Pharmaceutical industry • Regulatory authorities • WHO collaborating center for

international drug monitoring • CIOMS (Council For International Organisation of Medical Sciences) In order to collect information on Adverse Drug Reaction(ADRs), certain centers are also established with the following objectives: • Improvement in patient care, public health and their safety in relation to medicines. • Identification of risk factors • Promoting clinical training and understanding in the field of pharmacovigilance Responsibilities in Drug Safety Pharmacovigilance Job Profile include: • Recording and reporting adverse reactions received from healthcare professionals and consumers • conducting in-depth interviews with patients and healthcare professionals • developing a thorough knowledge of products • completing periodic safety update reports on drugs and other treatments • writing and reviewing serious adverse effects reports and forms • flagging up early warning signs of adverse effects of drugs • minimizing the risk of serious side effects • completing safety audits • working on clinical trials of new drugs

Employers of Drug Safety Pharmacovigilance Associates: • • • •

Pharmaceutical companies Medical device companies Biotechnology companies Regulatory authorities

Pharmacovigilance offers bright career prospects for all healthcare professionals in terms of career growth and salary. Today a large number of healthcare companies are involved in Pharmacovigilance where one can start their career as PHARMACOVIGILANCE ASSOCIATE OR DRUG SAFETY ASSOCIATE. Drug safety associates are Pharma, Life Science, Nursing or Medical Graduates, who specialize in monitoring the adverse effects of drugs in patients and reporting these effects for review and drug modification. Also known as drug safety associates. Some of the known profile in Drug Safety Pharmacovigilance Job includes:• • • • • •

Drug Safety Associate Pharmacovigilance Associate Case Processing Expert Clinical Safety Scientist Safety Associate Pharmacovigilance Scientist

Drug Safety Pharmacovigilance experts have numerous responsibilities and this can vary from one company to another. The roles include activities like. • Processing and writing of ad-

verse event program • Follow up on important case reports • Serving as a link between the company and the patients or healthcare experts to provide valid information on product safety. • Conducting regular pharmacovigilance developments and supervising these processes. • Attending several meetings related to product safety • Adding value to any business through product safety functionality. Today approximately 70+ organizations are present in India which are involved in Pharmacovigilance and have separate Pharmacovigilance units. People Trained In Pharmacovigilance Can Find Excellent Employment Options In The Following Organizations: • Pharmaceutical Companies. • Contract Research Organizations (CROs) • Biotech companies. • Specialized Pharmacovigilance centers • Knowledge Process Outsourcing (KPOs) such as Accenture, Cognizant, Sciformix Corporation, iGATE, etc. • Regulatory Authorities such as DCG(I), FDA & CDSCO

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Top organizations include: • • • • • • • • • • • • • • •

Novartis Parexel Dr.Reddy’s Aurobindo Pharma PPD Covance ICON Accenture HCL Syneos Health INC Research KPMG Novo Nordisk Lupin Even Govt organizations have started recruiting for this post of Drug Safety Associate.

Eligibility Criteria: • The general academic requirement for Drug Safety vacancies are successful graduates with a pharmacy, medical or life science degree, and in some instances further qualifications in project management or a Masters in Drug Safety. • Drug Safety cases can come in from clinical trials, as well as medicines actively being marketed. Once a side effect is reported in the company database additional to follow up may be required to complete gaps in the case. The completed reports are forwarded to the regulatory au-

thorities for review. • The initial salary levels are based on academic background, which differs from year to year, as well as from company to company. • Starting level titles tend to be Drug Safety Associate or Drug Safety Coordinator where the focus is mainly case processing; which involves doing data entry of cases; making sure drug identifiers are captured correctly, and the event reports are detailed enough for the evaluator to decide on the cause of the adverse event. • Once you have achieved 2-3 years experience you will be skilled in narrative report writing (providing a summary report of events to readers who do not have access to the original data sets, so that the reader is able to come to a conclusion on the adverse event), medical coding using MedDRA (the most commonly used system to achieve a global standardization across regulatory agencies, to code adverse drug reactions) and have a good ICH-GCP understanding. You are likely to apply for roles such as Drug Safety Scientist or Clinical Drug Safety Officer. • With a good narrative writing background you can move into reviewing and, over time, writing and authoring PSURs (Periodic Safety Update Reports,

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DSURs (Development Safety Update Reports) and RMPs (Risk Management Plans). With the authoring experience, you can then start exploring roles like Drug Safety Medical Writer or Aggregate Report Writer. • With 6-8 years of work experience in these positions, you can easily become a Team Lead or Team manager, ultimately achieving the title of Associate Director, Director or Vice-President Salary…is one thing that no can exactly say firmly how much they get because it varies from job to job and company to company. Mainly it depends on the qualification and job profile which an individual is going to pursue. It also matters the country where u r going to work and also the company where u got the opportunity. • Pharmacists, Pharmacy, nursing, Ayurveda, homeopathic, dental, physiotherapy, life sciences graduates are eligible to work in this industry. • The starting salary for a fresher with PG in Life Sciences, Pharmacy or UG in Pharmacy, Dental Surgery is between 15-25k INR per month. • For Pharmacovigilance Leadership (with 8–15 years of Pharmacovigilance experience ) the salary varies between 13 Lacs

per annum to 40 Lacs per annum depending on education, experience, skillset(s) and company types (CRO, consultancy, BPO, etc) • Salary package for freshers and experienced associates varies depending on years of experience in the industry they hold. • Average Life science & pharmacy graduate can easily reach 10 lakhs package in 5-6 years. • if you are Oracle Argus , Oracle Inform, Clinical , Database administrator, designer , or forms developer related to technical programmer you can expect more than 60k per month, after 5 years u can expect the package of 15 lakhs per year, one can earn equal to clinical SAS Programmer. So, one thing I can say for sure is – finding a Pharmacovigilance / Drug safety Associate job is definitely possible. It may take persistence, a lot of work from your part and some couple of months or more, but do not leave hope. This is one such field that is growing and will continue to grow at 10X speed in coming future with a lot of job scope. So its time to be future-ready. Keep an eye on jobs posted at Biotecnika.org & Rasayanika. com.


CAREER ADVICE

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Clinical Research – Eligibility, Job Scope, Salary & Top Companies Hiring

New Mouse Model Predicts two clinical trial failures in Humans …Uganda Launching new experimental Ebola Vaccine Trial …Recent Trials for Fragile X syndrome Offer Hope… YOU ALL MUST HAVE COME ACROSS THESE TYPES OF NEWS. BUT HAVE YOU EVER WONDERED: WHY THESE TYPES OF NEWS FLASH ON A DAILY BASIS? WHAT’S THE POINT BEHIND THIS? WHAT DO THE TRIALS MEAN? By Dr. Ankita Trivedi

New trials and experiments aren’t offered to the public as soon as they’re produced. They need to be analyzed and confirmed first. A clinical trial is a type of investigation or experimentation that examines a test or treatment given to individuals. Clinical trials include various studies like how shielded and beneficial tests and treatments are. When they passed the trials and found to be safe and helpful, they may become tomorrow’s standard of care. Clinical Research includes various trials and experiments, such as : • Different usage of drugs already approved by the FDA, • Drugs not yet accepted by the U.S. FDA (Food and Drug Administration), • New methods of drug intake, such as in pill form, • Use of other possible medicines, such as herbs and vitamins, • Innovative tests to detect and track disease, and • Drugs or methods that relieve symptoms and much more! To know more about these trials and how they are performed, let’s explore : What exactly Clinical Research Is? Clinical research is a field that deals with the study & analysis of health & illness in Humans. It is the means through which scientists analyze how to prevent, diagnose and treat illness. Clinical research describes many different elements of scientific investigation. It involves human participants and helps translate basic research into new treatments and information to beneficial for patients. Clinical Trials or Clinical Studies involves human volunteers. These type of research or experimental studies

enables various groups of researchers and investigators to search for new and more effective ways to understand, discover, regulate as well as deal with different types of human disorders/ diseases/ abnormalities. In other words, we can say that these trials are the best way to get answers to any difficult scientific / health-related queries. Goals of Clinical Research : All clinical trials should meet certain goals to fulfill their design or use of conduct. It must : • Enhance therapeutic understanding • Be implemented by adroit persons, • Take all important steps/actions to protect those who accommodate themselves to research, • Acquire regulatory acceptance and take all the obligatory legal and ethical steps. • Gather the assent of those involved in research Types of Clinical Research : Basically clinical trials conducted for clinical research studies are of various types. The two main types are : • Observational Studies: These clinical research studies do not examine any drugs or their effects on human illness. Examiners are involved in observing participants of the trials by monitoring their health over a period

of time and collect relevant data. Examiners enhance their medical knowledge by continuous follow-up of the patients in the reference centers. • Interventional Studies: These studies furnish scientific verification of the efficacy and welfare of an innovative drug, a new caution device or a new organization in the context of a disease or illness. These clinical trials or interventional studies are obligatory steps for the conversion of a new molecule into an innovative drug or any newly discovered device to be noticed. Apart from the above-mentioned types of Clinical Studies, there are different types of clinical research that are used in a different way depending on what the examiners or investigators are studying. Some of them are Treatment Research, Prevention Research, Diagnostic Research, Screening Research, Quality of Life Science, Genetic Studies, Epidemiological Studies. Researchers require different types of participants for their study. They can have ‘outpatient ’ or ‘ inpatient’, participants do not stay at the hospital overnight or stay for at least one night respectively. Phases of Clinical Trials : During the development of new drugs, clinical trials are conducted in basically 5 steps : • Phase I- Administration in Humans: Performed in healthy individuals. Its main objective is to

examine Clinical and Biological tolerance. With this phase of the trial, various effects on the models are determined as well as this trail allows examination of the fate of different molecules in the body depending on its route of administration. Phase II- Administration in Patients: For the first time molecules are inserted in patients. It is confined to a limited number of patients over a short duration of treatment. Phase III- Therapeutic Efficacy: This phase is considered a Pivotal Study as it is the last and final step followed before the drug is marketed. It is used to measure the medicinal efficiency of the molecule as well as its tolerance level close to real-life circumstances. Phase IV- The Marketing Authorization: Based on the data collected through various phases (1-3), submission of the Marketing Authorization Application is allowed to the National Agency of Medicines & Health Products. Once authorization is obtained, the Molecule is acknowledged as a drug and finally, it is marketed. Phase V- Monitoring and Evaluation of side Effects: Also called as Surveillance Phase in which various side effects are monitored, recorded and examined to assess patient safety.

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In today’s scenario, Clinical ReINR 5,00,000 search is one of the most upcoming and demanding fields of Science that MASTER OF SCIENCE (M.SC. requires highly dedicated and deter- CLINICAL RESEARCH) : mined individuals. As of now, you all are aware of I think most of you are already gain- Clinical research and its benefits. It ing interest in this particular research is known that this field utilizes a difield and some of you are aware of verse array of experiments as well as this. More about Clinical Research research in clinics, especially with orCourses, Eligibility, Scope, Salary, ganisms. This master course includes and Companies hiring, Are discussed various components like Drug studies below: & its medical management, Performing organic activities in the clinic, List of Clinical Research Courses Study of various sub-related disciWith Eligibility, Scope, Salary De- plines like Biostatistics, Epidemiolotails : gy, Transplantation, etc. You can always choose your specialization after Various courses are available now- getting enrolled. adays for Clinical Research studies. You can get yourself enrolled in Di- Duration: 2 years course ploma courses, Masters courses or even in Certification courses in Clin- Eligibility: You should be a graduical research. ate in any discipline of Science with at least 50 % marks in aggregate. Fields Diploma in Clinical research : / Disciplines included here are Life Sciences (Zoology, Microbiology, This course is usually annual having Botany, Toxicology, Biochemistry, term examinations conducted every Pharmacology or Biotechnology); B. year by concerned universities. En- Pharma, M. Pharma, Nursing, Physirolled candidates learn basic bioeth- otherapy. Candidates waiting for their ics related to clinic or hospital. The final year/semester results are also elcourse includes presentations, manu- igible on a provisional basis. scripts preparations of various scientific meetings and journals of techni- Top Institutes: Galgotias Univercal medicine. Students enrolled in this sity, Sharda University, Periyar Macourse will be modulated and trained niammai University, Amity Universito transform them into quality clinical ty, Indian Institute of Public Health, research analysts having all the set of School of Bio-Science, Apeejay Stya skills required to work in any hospital University, Indian Institute of Clinior clinic. cal Research India. Candidates having Diploma in this field can have a wide array of career options. Be it a Medical department (hospital/ clinic) or working as a lecturer/teacher, candidates can choose any options according to their wishes. • Duration: 1-year full-time course. • • Eligibility: 55 % score in graduation in any Medical science courses (MBBS, BDS, etc.) or Degree in Science, Life Sciences, Pharmacy, Pharmacology, Biotechnology, etc. from a recognized university. • • Scope/ Job positions: You can choose any job profile as you wish from plenty of career options available. You can be absorbed as a Clinical research Analyst, Clinical Research Associates, Clinical Research Coordinator, Clinical Research Physicians, Biostatistician, etc. • • Average Salary: INR 2,50,000 –

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This is a certification course of a very short duration which involves Hospital and Healthcare Management Programme. The aim of this course is to examine the safeguarding of general views on the moral values connected to bioethics and some highly complex issues of executing this basic knowledge to a different sets of situations. Duration: Short course of 6 months Eligibility: Graduates of Medical background (MDS, MBBS, BAMS, MS, MD, BUMS), UG & PG candidates of various allied streams of Science like – Pharmacology, Life Sciences, Medical laboratory, Pharmacy, Nursing, Biochemistry, Biotechnology, etc. All the professionals working with various Clinical Research organizations / Pharmaceutical companies are also eligible for this course. Scope/ Job positions: Candidates after completing this certification course can assist in the presentations and manuscripts preparations of various scientific lectures/meetings including technical sessions of conferences or training programs. Candidates can also choose a teaching career (gov./private). Employment areas include Clinical research labs, Medical Universities / Colleges, Private clinics, Government hospitals, and Pharmacist shops. Average Salary : INR 1,50,000 – INR 3,00,000

Scope/ Job positions: You can List of Top Companies Hiring In choose any career options from a the Field of Clinical Research Are: wide range available after having this course of Clinical research according • ACTREC to your interest. To quote some – you • TMC can be a Project Manager – Clinical • CDSA – THSTI Research, Clinical Research Coordi- • ICMR nator, Clinical Research Physician, • Teva Pharmaceutical Biostatistician, Clinical Research Analyst; Programmer – Clinical Research, Clinical Research Associate and such. You can also work as Medical Assistants – professionals in clinics, hospitals and Health Services Managers. Average Salary: INR 3 – 12 Lacs per annum Top Recruiting Areas: Pharmaceutical industry, educational institutes, CROs, SMOs, hospitals, DCGI office, and other govt. drug and food regulatory/ research organizations, etc. :

Certification in Clinical Research

• • • • • • • • • • • • • •

Pfizer Fortis Hospitals Panacea Biotec PPD St. John’s Research Institute Medpace TCS PGIMER Cognizant Chiltern inVentiv Health Novartis ICON Novo Nordisk

All the above-mentioned courses will lend you to so many career options, you can choose according to your interests. Clinical Research is one of the fastest-growing industries at a surprising rate opening a wide array of career options for skilled and trained professionals. As of now, you can understand how important Clinical Trials are and its study as well as examination to market any drug or device. This research field provides vivid scientific analysis related to its impact, benefits, and risks associated with drugs. The procedure used to run clinical trials are cautiously changing with the execution of modern technologies. Virtual, Wearables, Artificial Intelligence, In silico trials, Digital biomarkers and Personalized medicines are all probably to play a major role in the upcoming future of Clinical Trials and Research. You can be a part of this astonishing future by choosing a career in Clinical Research. Here’s to the future, when the variations we cuddle today will forefront a healthier world. All the Best!


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All About Biohacking : Introduction, Types, Career & Job Prospects

Have you ever heard anything about Do-It-Yourself biology? DIY comprises as one of the types of Biohacking which offers freedom to individuals known as biohackers to endeavor with and exploit biology in a progressive manner. BIOHACKING IS THE TERM WHICH CAN BE DEFINED AS THE FREEDOM TO EXPLORE BIOLOGY. By Dr. Nidhi Hukku & Dr. Preeti Saini

If someone wants to call himself as a biologist and interested in biohacking where he changes a biological cell or makes himself capable of gaining control over systems in the body he will be said to performing the art of Biohacking. Biohackers are involved in open – source biology asserting. They perform the art of changing the environment inside or outside the human body to hold control over its upgrading mind and eventually life. Biohacking may involve making little changes in diet or lifestyle, improvising health and wellbeing customizing according to personal needs. It can certainly widen the domain where human bodies can be altered not only with the repair as a target but to enhance the capabilities of the human body. Biohacking is extending its arms steadily! Grinders/Cyborgs Does it sound provocative to incorporate gadgets inside the body parts and thus behaving like a “cyborg”? a. What is a “cyborg”? Cyborg may be defined as a fictional or hypothetical individual who is capable to show superpowers by means of extending abilities beyond normal human limitations. It is done by integrating artificial components that are controlled by feedback which works in a circuit or loop. Imagine combining human bodies with a combination of implants, gadgets or injections which can be incorporated in the body to transform the body into a “cyborg”. – Biohacking. b. Hearing colors is an option for color blinds This can be contemplated as an exciting achievement to color blind people if they are willing to turn into “Cyborgs”. They can be equipped with electronic eyes which help in

perceiving the colors as sounds turning them into hearing the colors rather than seeing them. ‘Neil Harbisson’ who is the world’s first human cyborg and the founder of Cyborg Foundation as well finds life to be more thrilling by creating applications for human bodies rather than the mobile phones. This man was born with achromatopsia, a rare and extreme type of color blindness. He developed a third eye in the form of a mechanical device which has been implanted in his skull and aids him in hearing images. c. Sensing the earthquake is possible Another example of “cyborg” could be Ms. Moon Ribas, a Spanish choreographer who has got a sensor implanted in her left arm. This sensor vibrates on detecting the earthquake. d. Doctor at home! Blood testing can be done by implants which are still being worked upon by the researchers of Switzerland. This chargeable implantable device having sensors and a radio transmitter is capable of monitoring glucose and ATP in the human body and transmitting the data to the patch that can be fixed externally to the body. Further analysis could be obtained by Doctors by sharing the data through a cellular network. Isn’t it fascinating to reduce the number of regular checkups for people suffering from chronic illnesses like diabetes that needs to visit doctors so often? e. The body will sense the direc-

tion you are going! Another proposed implantable device from Cyborg Nest, a company based in London, United Kingdom has been named as ‘North sense’ which can be implanted on the surface of the skin in the cyborgs. This device can amusingly sense and vibrates when the wearer moves towards the magnetic north. f. Bio magnets: magnets at fingertips! Via Biohacking – Biohackers are implanting bio magnets into fingertips which can enable them in increased sensory amplification. Though it may sound like sensory fiction but with theses magnetic fingers one can sense the invisible things or pick up the tiny metal objects just like any factious superhero from a thriller. Amusingly to characterize the nature of the object is on your fingertips. For people working in electronics, it can be proved as a kind of boon where they can easily differentiate between dead and live wires. One of the open-source groups like Grindhouse Wetware, an opensource biotechnology start-up situated in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania is working on the Bottlenose, a device which may fit over the fingers and excite the senses. g. Unlocking the soft wares in a new way! Other types of NFC (Near Field Communication) and RFID (Radio-frequency distribution) implants are available and functional among

‘cyborgs’ which can be seen as replacements of the chips for keys and passwords or even swap the identification of an individual. What more exciting one can expect than to unlock his vehicles, phones, laptops or security lockers or even doors by just waving his hand. h. Rhyming with the body! Have you ever imagined of placing a device which may notice your body rhythms or even measuring body temperatures and relaying this information for any sort of medical assistance? This unique ‘circadia’ has been actually implanted by Tim Canon, who is the co-founder of Grindhouse Wetware. i. Shine with Bioluminescence! It’s time to glow with implants like “Day-Glo”, another bio-hack which has been developed by “Grindhouse Wetware”. The implants are fixed with LEDs which imitate bioluminescence. Nutrigenomics: Biohacking for the health-conscious people! Interaction of food with genes can be manipulated by this type of biohacking. How different nutrients are going to affect the health of an individual can be optimized by mapping the genetic expression. Undoubtedly genes determine the function biologically; nutrition can alter the magnitude of gene expression. Along Next Page>>>>


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with with it other factors like stress, weight or exercise also affects how a body contributes to food. How about switching up the nutrition in an appropriate way to obtain the optimal results where an individual can reach the potential recognized by his genetic makeup. Biohacking allows it by incorporating self-experimentation to an extent where one can explore the different ways by which nutrients affect the thinking and behavior. Thus Nutrigenomics can assist humans to live a healthier life. Decreasing risk of getting depression, extra weight or chances of diseases besides optimizing blood pressure or gut bacteria comes under biohacking domain. How it is done? Biohacking can contribute by constructing the products which assist the natural biological function by steering the biochemical effects of oxidative stress leading into aging. Upregulating the genes to produce antioxidants, prevent organelle deterioration like mitochondria or enhance the gut ability to fight bacteria can be inculcated into the biohacking. Explore Nutrition habits! Changing sugar habits, consuming more healthy fats or non-starchy foods, figuring out the elimination diet for self-comprises the biohacking. Ensuring daily diet consists of less processed food and more of water can be included as part of Biohacking the body. How much you sleep?

sponse to the economy as well. Initiated by Rob Carlson, a physics Ph.D. student in 1996, DIY bio is an extensively intensifying socio-technological movement which offers opportunities to biohackers to study and experiment the biological processes by following the protocols suggested by professionals which remain usually online. According to reported data in US alone DIY bio spaces are over fifty in number having approximately 30,000 biohackers and other like-minded individuals to present their unprecedented ideas. How safe is to play with biology? Biohacking opens up the safety concerns for the society like bioethics should be taken into consideration while it is being performed. Modified organisms through different ways may leave bioethics in question where few indignant groups of people may exploit the open-source nature of biohacking to develop biological weapons. Few Environmental organizations are also opposing DIY. Absolutely innovation and economic growth offered by DIY should be aligned by the safety of Biohacking to prevent the wrong consequences to turn up. Though biohacking can show novel aspects in the health and medicine, a critical eye should be placed on the precarious outcomes of biohacking as it may involve shoving the body to adapt to new limits or utilizing chemical and technological augmentations to which body may respond in an unsafe manner.

Tuning your sleep hours and pat- Certainly, DIY bio or Nutrigenomterns can be part of biohacking. The ics offers a glimpse of positive trends, body can be bio hacked by veering that every individual has the ability feeding habits. to bring the best out of biology and empowers the world with the hope of Get closer to nature! reflecting enhancements in day to day life. If you are counting doing yoga or exercise under the daily routine re- Qualifications: gime, try it doing in the lap of nature as it has proven to boost the potentials It is quite obvious that Biohacking than doing inside the closed rooms or and its applications have very much backyards. fascinated you by now, and you must be feeling enthusiastic to obtain or DIY Biology: Cultivating Innova- generate a biohack. Have a little pations tience as most of the universities or institutes yet do not have Biohacking It is a kind of biohacking displayed as one of the courses. Then, how to be by people experienced in scientific a Biohacker? It is basically an emergfields. These people suggest various ing technique, so one of the best opways to assist non – experts or hobby- tions is to self-learn after getting asists to conduct self – experiments out sociated with the researchers already of the regular experimental domains involved in this process. There exists in labs, garages, closets or kitchens a lot of academies and online courses This has come up with advanced life which may be of your help. science solutions and exhibiting re-

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BioHack Academy: Here, one can design, build, use and share his own bio lab. Each edition connects passionate groups around the world. They have several partners from technologically sound countries viz. USA, South Korea, Japan, and Amsterdam. Like the one from Amsterdam provides a 10-week course, after completing which one is capable to grow his own fuel, food, filaments, pharmaceuticals, fragrances, fungi and much more funky bio stuff at home. They emphasize on motivating and teaching on how to join the bio revolution. Biohacking can make you a researcher owning a lab using a local maker space or Fablaband working with theoretically anything viz. microorganisms, 3D design, digital fabrication, programming, electronics, bio-pigments, bio-textiles, etc. People: Try to look for a community of people with shared interests via seminars, workshops, classes. E.g. Biosummit that has been designed specifically for DIYbio. Easily available inputs: Kits, guides, research papers, media, podcasts (The Quantified Body), books, blogs (Tim Ferriss – the 4-Hour Work Week), etc. Career Options Biohackers can get opportunities in the form of Freelance projects. This is especially a good option for all those young minds who have a lot of ideas but no laboratory or guidance to explore. Biohacking requires minimum interference from a senior and gives you the option to be involved in active research, without looking for already existing support data. As far as market jobs are concerned since the field is still growing, we can not find quite a lot of jobs until it gets more mainstream. However, jobs can be found in startups or companies specifically designed for biohacking. One such position which is regularly offered by this market is being a Trainee – Content Marketing. This not only gives you exposure but also stimulates your neural cells to look for ideas for your own startups and become an entrepreneur. Along with a fixed salary, you are also offered a share in equity and profits. Since the field is still emerging, a lot of ideas have not been tried yet and hence left in your plate.

fluential role in the development of the MinION, the world’s smallest, most portable and soon-to-be most important genome sequencing platform. Their plan is to create a world where even school children can sequence different species as a part of their curriculum and get direct scientific attribution. This will not only give a sense of responsibility but also keeps the scope for improving the gene pool. Human Body Designers: Yes you heard it right. Human Body Designer will be someone who can combine bioengineering with design skills. This will solve the problem of human organ trafficking. It will also create a better version of cosmetic surgeries. They aim at creating the organ from a patient’s own cells, leaving behind the little risk of immune rejection. Zoologists will be able to manage the reintegration of a species into the wild and judge any ecological impacts of the species’ behavior and survival. Designing the proteins Biohacking is also working on lifestyle. So, it is believed to have a positive impact on human health as well. Personal microbiome generation is also under study and is hopeful to give an idea to cultivate person-specific microbiota in his own body. To push the boundaries of our modern world towards improvement and to bridge the gap between humans and computers, the art and science of biohacking are expanding. It is predictable that technology will inculcate inside the humans apart from around them. So although extending human life beyond a limit is inexorable, enjoying longevity is possible. Biohacking the lifespan can be an entrancing option to biohackers or who should better be known as Bio enthusiasts. Whether it is about discovering and implanting the contact lenses with cameras or language translator earbuds or making more advancement in the IVF technologies by making insights into the embryos without professional and expensive labs biohackers can bring in innovations but safety should not be kept on risk. It’s radical to believe in holding the ownership and have the admittance and ability to rebalance the power with an affirmative approach.

“Without change, there is no innovation, creativity or incentive for ImBiohacking is providing a platform provement “ not only to become an independent researcher but also finding unusual With appropriate and updated regroutes to create job opportunities. Let ulation over synthetic biology and considering bioethics at every levus take a few examples: el biohacking can offer wonders to Earlham Institute has played an in- transform the society through revolutionary ways. Future/Job Prospects:


VOICE OF BIOTECNIKA

October 15th, 2019 Vol. 03 NO 100

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Happy Birthday, Biotecnika! What Happened 13 Years Ago? Find Out! Special Episode By Preety Suman

The year was 2006 and the internet was sold at 700 Rs for a 64 kbps connection in Bengaluru. At approximately 7 PM IST on 11th October 2006, after a long tiring day, the founders of a future revolutionary company finally decided on a name. A name that changed the way BioSciences is read, understood and imparted. per similarweb.com Every day, we find Biotecnika’s Yes, 13 years ago, the seedling for BioTecNika is visited by 3.6 crore website flooded with information India’s No. 1 Bioscience Web Portal, BioProfessionals globally every year, about the current scenarios of employwas planted with utmost care. Can you imagine 3.6 crores ment in Life Science and Chemical Science. A very detailed and updated With the passing days and years, BioTecNika is the Only BioSciences list of all the current job openings, the seedling grew tall and spread its Organization to be present in 5 cities available internships projects and branches over the Life Science and of India – Bangalore, Noida, Pune, conferences along with general tips to Chemical Science students and pro- Kolkata & Chennai and daily catering succeed in one’s career is published. vided them with the fruits of knowl- to millions of students in their career On a monthly basis, a well-organized edge and career guidance. Today, on needs newsletter is released which provides October 11th, we wish Biotecnika a I am sure many of you have been information about the ongoings in the very Happy Birthday. a part of this incredible journey just research world and popular headlines as Ms. Ali Aktara, who has qualified for that period. We started BioTecNika with a mod- GATE 2019, DBT JRF category I, est aim—create awareness about the CSIR NET JRF 2019 and is now re- If you still wish to learn more about Biotech / Life Science field around alizing her dream at IISC Bangalore these, you may visit the website us. As our beloved BioSciences field as a PM Research Fellow, or Mr. www.biotecnika.org and subscribe to grows in power and size, they are also Aneesu Rahman KT, who qualified the channel and portal if you haven’t turning the table of opportunities that the FSSAI 2019 with the 3rd rank done so yet. exist around us. To write about the or Tanshi, Dimple, and Snigdha who complexity of our field with fairness, have qualified CSIR NET JRF within Looking at a student’s busy curricaccuracy, and independence—tenets the top 50 rank. ulum, a user-friendly portal courses. of a great organization—requires re- In last one year, we also launched biotecnika.org has allowed one to sources, people and of course all of Ask BioTecNika – An initiative to gather all educational information you, our beloved subscribers. help students with their day-to-day under one roof. With a detail-orientdoubts about careers and opportuni- ed teaching method and improvised Since its inception, Biotecnika has ties BioTecNika Prime was launched technology, multiple courses have been supporting the career aspirations in dec of 2018 and today it’s one of been designed both for self-learning of hundreds of thousands of students the fastest-growing segments of Bio- as well as classroom training. Physthrough its detailed website, conduct- TecNika ical and virtual libraries have been ed workshops, International confer- We also completed 51 episodes of provided for student aid. With a conences, countless courses, amazing The Voice of BioTecNika in past 1 ceptualized and comprehensive test faculty members, and a dedicated, Year series, many students and toppers like hard-working support team. In September of 2019, we also Ms. Aruna, Ankita, Gurpreet, Sanhita launched numerous Micro Certifica- have achieved their goal of qualifying Let’s start with the numerous acco- tion Courses such as CRISPR, Mo- competitive examinations. lades & achievements of BioTecNika lecular Modeling, Quick NET Reviin last 13 Years: sor and many more. Biotecnika believes in the concept With countless names to decorate that ‘learning never ends’, hence to As of Today, BioTecNika.org is In- Biotecnika’s hall of fame, there are enable students further, multiple india’s Number 1 Biotechnology web- numerous other reasons why Biotec- dustry-standard certification courses site as per Alexa.com ( an Amazon nika is the most popular students’ such as Molecular docking, Research company) BioTecNika ranks among choice. Methodology, Artificial Intelligence, the top 25 Websites in the world as FACS, CRISPR, NGS have been de-

signed, which has seen a thrust in the employability of the young minds. Nobody likes bookish knowledge that has no industrial relevance or that does not bridge the gap between studies and employment. To overcome this, Biotecnika’s initiative of Virtualized International Conferences with unimaginable global participation has brought together with brilliant minds that spent the day discussing topics like Artificial Intelligence in Health and Bioscience, Life science career trends, CRISPR technology, etc. To keep students connected all the time, Biotecnika has introduced its mobile app and WhatsApp connectivity. Through countless reviews and gratitude filled emails, popularity and use are evident. Youtube channel offers numerous podcasts, videos and concept animations on everyday topics and amazing science facts that intrigue young minds. Countless books, materials have been created in a manner to gain the most, through the least investment. In short, the institute has been determined and focussed to support a student, irrespective of their busy schedule or unreachable location, in order to be able to provide the country with the best of talent for overall development and growth. The list does not end here. Once a student successfully qualifies, pursues their dream of research, they find it difficult to manage resources. To support them, there is a scope to

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VOICE OF BIOTECNIKA

‘teach and earn’, where a student can associate with Biotecnika, provide course materials and then earn the benefits. They can also avail scholarship programs to help their research going, even if their fellowship terms have ended. A lot of times, research fellows find it difficult to manage

their laboratory budget, finding the right quality of materials and also face occasional delays and disappointment. To avoid all this and limit the turnaround time and running around, Biotecnika offers a unique portal – Biotecnika Prime, where all lab supplies and chemicals can be ob-

October 15th, 2019 Vol. 03 NO 100

served, compared, availed at the best Today we embark on our fourteenth price and assured guarantee. year — a journey that promises to be more adventurous and intrepid than On this special day, we thank Bio- any before. tecnika for all the different ways it has helped us achieve our dreams, Happy Birthday, Biotecnika! and wish ourselves a very Happy Birthday !!


SCHOLARSHIP & INTERNSHIP

October 15th, 2019 Vol. 03 NO 100

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Commonwealth PhD Scholarships for Indians – Applications Invited

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ommonwealth Split-site Scholarships for Indian candidates has been announced. It’s for pursuing PhD candidates. Interested applicants can check out all of the details regarding the scholarship, the overview, the terms and conditions, the eligibility, application procedure and more below: Commonwealth Split-site Scholarships (for low and middle-income countries) Commonwealth Split-site Scholarships is for PhD applicants from middle and low-income Commonwealth countries, to spend around 12 months in a UK university as part of the doctoral studies in their home nation. Funded from the UK Department for International Development (DFID), Commonwealth Split-site Scholarships empower motivated and talented individuals to gain the knowledge and skills necessary for sustainable development and are geared toward people who couldn’t otherwise afford to study in the united kingdom. These scholarships are offered under six topics: • Science and technology for development • Strengthening health systems and capacity • Promoting global prosperity • Strengthening global peace, governance and security • Strengthening resilience and response to crises • Access, inclusion and opportunity Split-site Scholarships are now open These scholarships are for: • 12 months study in a UK university as part of an applicant’s doctoral studies in their home country, starting in October 2020. • Applicants that are registered (or will be registered by September 2020) for a PhD at a university in an eligible Commonwealth country. • • Study at a UK university with which your home university has an established institutional or departmental link • Study at a UK university that has

a part funding agreement with the CSC. View a Complete list of all UK universities with part funding agreements. Terms & Conditions: Complete eligibility criteria are contained in the terms and conditions. Please read all sections of the terms and conditions before applying. How to apply: You have to make your application directly to the CSC using the CSC’s online application system. The CSC won’t accept any applications that aren’t submitted through the online application system. You’re not required to apply via a nominating body for all these scholarships.

pervisor to the online application sys- accordance with the following selectem (supervisors will be sent an email tion criteria: request). Reference from at least one other • Academic merit of this candidate individual — submitted directly by • Quality of the research proposal the referee to the online application • Possible Effect on the developsystem (referees will be sent an email ment of the candidate’s home request) country

Only 1 application per candidate for It’s your duty to make sure that your these scholarships will be approved. referees and supervisors can finish the references and supporting statements Application deadline: Your appli- by the deadline and that they receive cation has to be submitted by 16:00 the reference and statement requests. (GMT) on 06 November 2019 at the latest. The CSC won’t accept supporting documentation submitted outside the You’re advised to complete and sub- online application system. mit your application as soon as possible, as the online application system You can view a sample paper of this will be very busy in the days leading application form before you access up to the application deadline. the online application form. Supporting documentation: Your You can access the online applicaapplication needs to include the fol- tion system now. lowing supporting documentation by 16:00 (GMT) on 27 November 2019. The CSC intends to identify talented individuals having the capability Proof of citizenship or refugee sta- to make a change. We’re dedicated tus: a copy of your valid passport (or to a policy of equal opportunity and national ID card) showing your pic- non-discrimination and encourage ture, date of birth, and country of cit- applications from a wide range of izenship or refugee status– uploaded candidates. For more information on to the online application system the support available to applicants Complete transcripts detailing all with a disability, visit the CSC disayour higher education qualifications bility support statement. such as to-date transcripts for almost any qualifications you’re currently Please be aware that the CSC doesn’t studying (with certified translations charge applicants to apply for any of if not in English) — uploaded to the its scholarships or fellowships via its online application system online application system. Supporting statement from your supervisor at your home nation univer- Selection procedure: sity, such as details of current institutional links, submitted directly by Eligible applications will be considyour supervisor to the online applica- ered in line with the CSC’s Split-site tion system (supervisors will be sent Scholarships Selection Criteria, such via an email request). as by the CSC collection committee Supporting statement from your pro- in competition with other applicants. posed supervisor at a UK university, such as details of current institutional Applications will be considered in links, submitted directly by your su-

For additional details, see the Commonwealth Split-site Scholarships 2020 selection criteria. Anti-fraud policy The CSC is dedicated to administering and managing its scholarships and fellowships in a fair and transparent manner. For additional info, see the CSC anti-fraud policy as well as the DFID guidance on reporting fraud. Enquiries? In case you have any questions about applying for a Commonwealth Splitsite Scholarship, then you can contact us. We won’t use your email address for any purpose aside from responding to your enquiry. To learn more on other scholarships provided by the CSC, take a look at the CSC Apply page.


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October 15th, 2019 Vol. 03 NO 100

Biozentrum PhD Fellowships Program Life Sciences 2020

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nternational PhD Program “Biozentrum PhD Fellowships” 2020 Winter Call has been announced. Exceptional students from the world over are encouraged to apply for the prestigious “Fellowships for Excellence” program. Interested candidates can check out all of the details on the same below: Biozentrum PhD Fellowships Program Excellent students from all over the world are encouraged to apply for the prestigious “Biozentrum PhD Fellowships” program. The aim of the fellowships which are sponsored by the Werner Siemens-Foundation and the University of Basel is to select and promote highly talented graduate students in the area of Life Sciences. The fellowships offer direct access to the PhD program of the Biozentrum, University of Basel, additional financial support, a rotation-based selection of the research group, and support for the attendance of scientific meetings and courses during the PhD. Application and Selection Procedure: The prestigious PhD fellowships are awarded on a competitive basis. Shortlisted candidates are invited to the Biozentrum for a week of interviews with group leaders and other opportunities to interact and get to know the Biozentrum.

ber 15, 2019. Please submit your application online. Your application must include: • electronic copies of your diploma/MSc degree with grades and transcripts as pdf files • CV or scientific résumé (maximum one page, pdf format) • names and contact information of 2 referees from your previous academic environment (usually faculty members) The referees will be contacted automatically and will be asked for an online To organize your individual interevaluation as well as a reference views and lab visits during the inletter. terview week, you will be asked to indicate 8 to 10 group leaders. You You will get further information will also present your research in a about the application procedure as 10-minute presentation and 10-minsoon as you have submitted your ap- ute question and answer seminar to plication. the Program Committee and other interested group leaders. A chaperone Selection procedure: – a PhD from the fellowships − will be your personal guide during these After the closing date for the open days, tell you about being a PhD at the call, applications will be evaluated Biozentrum and be happy to answer by all group leaders of the Biozen- your questions. Two dinners with trum. Based on the feedback from group leaders and the chaperones, an their peers, the Program Committee informal meeting with the PhD Club will shortlist 20-30 candidates who and a cultural visit to Basel will give will be invited to the Biozentrum for you a good insight into Basel and the an interview week (travel and accom- Biozentrum. modation provided by the fellowship program). At the end of the interview week,

you will be informed about who will receive fellowship offers. We expect your acceptance or declination of the fellowship by September, or March respectively. You can then start your PhD in the following six months. Committee: The committee is made up of one representative from each Focal Area. • Prof. Marek Basler, (Head of Program) Infection Biology • Prof. Fiona Doetsch, Neurobiology • Prof. Christoph Handschin Growth & Development • Prof. Timm Maier, Structural Biology & Biophysics • Prof. Erik van Nimwegen, Computational & Systems Biology

Conditions: You must either already hold or expect to soon receive a university degree that qualifies you for a PhD program at the University of Basel (MSc, Diploma, etc.). In exceptional cases, outstanding students with a BSc degree (eg. USA, Canada, Singapore) are also eligible to apply to the fellowships’ program; they, however, will have to pass additional courses at the Biozentrum after acceptance. If you have already enrolled at the Biozentrum or plan to start your PhD thesis before September 1, or respectively March 1, of the same year as the open call, you are no longer eligible to apply. Application: The winter call is open until Decem-

biotecnika.org


SCHOLARSHIP & INTERNSHIP

October 15th, 2019 Vol. 03 NO 100

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NIAB Life Science Internship & Training Programme

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tudents who are pursuing their undergraduate/master degree i.e., in their final year are eligible to apply for the Project Internship/Post-graduate Training Programme/ Project Work/ Dissertation Work: for Six Months at NIAB has been released. All of the details on the eligibility, application procedure, important dates to remember and such has been given below: Advertisement No. 20/2019 Seeking Application for Project Internship/Post-graduate Training Programme/ Project Work/ Dissertation Work: for Six Months at NIAB The Institute provides opportunities for exceptional students to carry out project work under the oversight of the Institute’s scientists towards partial fulfilment of their Undergraduate/ postgraduate degrees (of at least SIX months’ duration; Session II: July -December). Following procedure should be followed by interested stu-

dents. Eligibility: Students That Are pursuing undergraduate/master degree (e.g. B. Tech, MSc, MVSc, MTech, Integrated master students, etc. in their final year) could apply. How to Apply: The request has to come from the Head of Department and has to provide the academic resumes of the recommended student(s) clearly specifying percentage marks obtained at various levels and the Subjects covered, in addition to the period of proposed project work. The candidate will be chosen based on his/her experience and the need for NIAB research. The committee decision will be final and not subject to any legal issues.

oratory Will be based on the require- time prior to the final date to prevent ment of individual PIs. last-minute technical issues. Applications for January-June Session will be accepted from 3rd Octo- The Institute won’t provide any accommodation at the campus. The ber to 2nd November by 5 PM. trainee could make his/her own ArJust selected students will be in- rangements for lodging, boarding and formed by 15th November for Janu- travelling during the period of the ary-June Session. Late applications work. won’t be considered. Candidates should fill online application form at There are no fixed numbers availawww.niab.org.in. ble annually but requests are considered on the basis of available vacanApplicants need to mention their broad area of interest in the applica- Candidates are advised to fill out the cies. tion form but the distribution of Lab- Online application form in sufficient


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Profile for BioTecNika

Celebrating 100th Edition - Biotecnika Times 15th Oct 2019  

Celebrating 100th Edition - Biotecnika Times 15th Oct 2019

Celebrating 100th Edition - Biotecnika Times 15th Oct 2019  

Celebrating 100th Edition - Biotecnika Times 15th Oct 2019