Genetic Research Lab at National Institute of Nutrition soon

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Genetic Research Lab at National Institute of Nutrition soon

A state-of-the-art laboratory to take up genetic research on animal models, especially mice and guinea pigs, is coming up at National Institute of Nutrition (NIN) in Hyderabad.

The new facility will be exclusively dedicated to university students and independent researchers offering hi – tech equipment to take up research on transgenic and knockout animal models.

Head of National Centre for Laboratory Animal Sciences (NCLAS) Dr. N. V. Giridharan on 24th April, 2011, said that the facility will be ready between 6 months to 1 year.

The facility will be a boon for students, who usually do not have access to such a hi – tech facility.

“There are institutions like CCMB that have similar laboratories meant for genetic research. But those labs are dedicated to senior scientists and researchers from foreign countries.

We will provide access to this hi – tech facility at affordable rates for students,” Dr. Giridharan told media persons on 24th April, 2011.

The new facility, which is under construction at NIN at a cost of 3 crore, will be available to students at affordable rates.

Imported Equipment

The sophisticated equipment, known as micromanipulators, in the laboratory is being imported.

“In transgenics, a foreign gene, most of the time a human gene, is inserted into the mice genome. This helps to study the characteristics of the inserted gene.

NCLAS already has lot of experience in breeding best animal models and this facility will help nurture young talented scientists,” Dr. Giridharan said.

The facility will also help students to research on knockout mice, which are genetically modified mice in which functionality of certain genes is ‘turned – off’ to study the role of that specific gene.

By making a gene inactive, researchers would be able to observe the differences from normal behaviour and gather the functions of the gene, he said.

“The Government of India is supporting us fully by funding the facility. We will only provide the facilities while the research will be done by young scientists,” Dr. Giridharan added.