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Biotechnology and its career prospects
Biotechnology is one of the most revolutionary and beneficial scientific advances of the last quarter century. It is an interdisciplinary science including not only biology but also subjects like mathematics, physics, chemistry, engineering and many more. It is also a conglomeration of various combined technologies applied to living cells for production of a particular product or enhancing its quality according to our preferences. Its application varies from agriculture to industry -- food, pharmaceutical, chemical, bio-products, textiles, medicine, nutrition, environmental conservation, animal sciences etc., arguably making it one of the fastest growing fields.
Biotechnology combines disciplines like genetics, molecular biology, biochemistry, embryology and cell biology, which are in turn linked to practical disciplines like chemical engineering, information technology, and robotics.
Like in IT sector, Biotechnology in India is also throwing up tremendous scope for growth and is contributing to the total biotech market worth US $100 billion. The country has a global market worth $91 billion and there is scope for cheap R&D through bio-partnering and co-developing technologies mainly with Chinese and American companies. More and more global pharma companies are seeking India to set their research and development centers here.
A biotechnologist may find jobs in various quarters. In India Students can mainly explore job options in the following fields:
Drug and pharmaceutical research
Public funded laboratories
Food processing &
The government institutes and organizations, such as Department of Biotechnology (DBT), several agriculture, dairy and horticulture institutes offer employment to Biotechnology professionals.
In private sector, there are tremendous job openings for biotechnologists. Drug companies in biotechnology like Dabur, Ranbaxy, Hindustan Lever, Dr Reddy's Labs that have their R & D units offer Biotechnology professional with handsome pay-package. There are also ample opportunities available for biotechnologists in the food processing industry, chemical industry and the textile industry.
Some industries employ biotechnologists in their marketing divisions to develop business in sectors where their products would be required. There are many opportunities in government labs as well.
The major companies, which hire biotechnologists, are Hindustan Lever, Thapar Group, Indo American Hybrid Seeds, Bincon India Ltd., IDPL and Hindustan Antibiotics etc.
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|Author: Raghavendra M 24 Nov 2009||Member Level: Gold Points : 2|
|Biotechnology is an emerging area since 20 years and has created revolution in Medical and Agricultural science. The Government of India initiated the Department of Biotechnology to promote research and education in different areas of Biotechnology in India. Many Universities have taken a big lead in Biotechnology human resource development. |
Biotechnology uses living cells and materials to create pharmaceutical, diagnostic, agricultural, environmental, and other products to benefit society. The science of biotechnology is also used to alter genetic information in animals and plants to improve them in some way that benefits people. Because biotechnology essentially uses the basic ingredients of life to make new products, it is both a cutting edge technology and an applied science. Analysts have predicted that biotechnology will be one of the most important applied sciences of the 21st century.
Ever since man began using microorganisms for the production of fermented food and beverage, Biotechnology has been in existence About two decades ago, biotechnology became much more of a science (rather than an art). The discovery that strands of
DNA called genes give rise to chains of aminoacids called proteins, which are important functional components in the cell, had given in our hands the most potential science to benefit mankind. About a decade ago, "protein engineering" became possible as an offshoot of the recombinant DNA technology. Protein engineering differs from "classical" biotechnology in that it is concerned with producing new (man-made) proteins, which have been modified or improved in some way.
In the mid-eighties and early-nineties, it has become possible to transform (genetically modify) plants and animals that are important for food production. "Transgenic" animals, including pigs, cows, sheep, and plants, tomatoes, tobacco, potato, and cotton have now been obtained. Genes introduced may make the organism more resistant to disease, may influence the rate of fruit ripening, or may increase productivity. Recent advances in this area of modem biotechnology are numerous.
After the full knowledge of human genome is available, biotechnology is going to play a major role in shaping the concept of future drug discovery, drug delivery, diagnostic methodology, clinical trials and to a great extent the major lifestyle of the human society. The growth of Biotechnology throughout the world at large and in the Indian industries in particular has been a point of debate. Constraints, concerns and difficulties in biotechnology in India will have to be addressed mainly related to human resources, training institutions in India, funding in biotechnology, patent-related issues and regulatory hurdles. Like in information technology, India has great potential in bioinformatics and biotechnology as well. Indian biotechnology industries have the potential to use the modern discoveries in life sciences to reach an enviable position in the world of biotechnology.