Pre-clinical Animal House Facility for Drug Discovery (CPCSEA, Govt. of India approved facility)
The Animal House Facility was established in Karunya University to carry out preclinical trials of drugs using animal models. The Animal House Facility has been registered with Committee for the Purpose of Control and Supervision of Experiments on Animals (CPCSEA) (Registration Number 1537/PO/a/11/CPCSEA) under the Ministry of Environment and Forests, Government of India. An Institutional Animal Ethics Committee (IAEC) was constituted as per the CPCSEA Guidelines; consisting of the members of Karunya University - Chairman, Member Secretary, Scientist from different disciplines, Government Veterinary Doctor, CPCSEA nominated external members including Scientists and Social Worker. This committee will evaluate the proposals on animal experimentation and is authorized to approve the projects using animal models.
The construction of the Animal House has followed all the rules & regulations, governing a Standard Animal House. It has a 'good path' and a 'bad path' provision, to prevent contamination. It has a quarantine room to receive newly arrived animals, to be kept under observation, before being taken to the Experiment rooms. It has a separate Dissection Room, to carry out operations/dissections. The provision holds a 24 hour Air conditioning system with a Humidifier maintaining 4-7% for the comfort of the animals maintained.
Researchers at KITS, whose work requires either a direct or interdisciplinary involvement in animal experiments, can make use of this state-of-the-art facility. This facility will help the students and research scholars to validate the pharmacological effect of extracts, compounds, and formulations using animal models. Experiments using Mice, Rat, Rabbits, Guinea Pig and Hamsters can be done in the Animal House Facility of Karunya University with proper approval from IAEC.
Water Treatment research laboratory (Funded by DRDO, Govt. of India)
DRDO-DRL Lab is the part of the Department of Biotechnology, located in the Second floor of Chelladurai building of School of Agricultural and Biosciences, Karunya Institute of Technology, Karunya nagar, Coimbaore-641114.
Environmental Biotechnology is the key area of the laboratory, working on two native bacterial Bacillus sp., known for their hyper tolerance is arsenic was used as promising tool for the bioremediation n of arsenic. PCR based analysis arsenic metabolizing potential of bacteria was also studied using PCR based analysis. Two national patents was filed from this laboratory and published during 2016 and 2018. An eco-friendly static bioreactor for Fluoride and Bacterial based bio ester for arsenic antagonistic. Presently the lab works on removal of oxy anions from drinking water source using bacteria.
Collaboration: Dr. Yoram Oren, Department of Desalination and Water Treatment, Zuckerberg Institute for Water Research, Ben-Gurion University of the Negev, Sede-Boqer Campus, 84990, Israel.
Water Treatment Facility
CANCER NANO-THERAPEUTIC RESEARCH LABORATORY
Cancer Nano-therapeutic Research Laboratory is a sponsored research lab established in 2014 in the Department of Biotechnology with a vision to find solution for the challenges existing in the field of chemotherapy for various cancer types. The lab was established initially with the research grant (Rs. 23.7 Lakh) obtained from DST-SERB, Government of India under the scheme of ‘Young Scientist-Start-Up Grant’. The lab facility was then extended with the Extramural research grant (Rs. 30.86 Lakhs) obtained from DBT, Government of India under the special scheme of ‘Nanoscience and Nanotechnology Application in Biology Task Force for funding’.
Cancer Research Laboratory
The focus of this research lab is advancements in the molecular targeted therapy specifically for life threatening lung cancer using liposome nano-formulated retinoid drug. Intense research is going on in this lab by inducing lung cancer in mice using chemicals as well as established and treating with cancer tissue targeted liposome encapsulated ATRA drug of nanometre size. The treatment efficacy and molecular response to such targeted molecular therapy for lung cancer cell in mice are assessed using reliable research methods and hi-tech. equipment available in the lab such as nano-formulation extruder, Leica microscope with image analysis tools, Gradient PCR, Gel documentation system and so on.
Over 30 quality research publications in reputed International Journals having impact factor have been produced using this research and development facility. These publications have attracted the IAESTE interns from other countries and they have been trained in this research lab as interdisciplinary research work. Several M.Phil and Ph.D scholars have been given chance to work in the lab to get their degrees. Many undergraduate (B.Tech. Biotechnology) and post graduate (M.Tech. Biotechnology, M.Sc. Microbiology) students have been given hands on trainings in the techniques developed and established in the lab. Few of my Undergraduate and post graduate students have worked in the lab for their projects and published research articles.
In future, this sponsored research lab may emanate as centre of excellence for interdisciplinary therapeutic research to find solutions for cancer therapies.
ALGAE BIOMASS RESEARCH LABORATORY
Algae Biomass research Laboratory is a sponsored research lab established in 2012 under the Department of Biotechnology, School of Agriculture and Bioscience with a vision to “Research on micro and macro algae”. Ongoing Research addresses the issues on water, energy, environment and health using algae. Algae (Micro or Macro) are capable of performing photosynthesis and produce half of the atmospheric oxygen and use simultaneously the green house gas carbon dioxide to grow photo autotrophically thereby reducing the carbon foot print. Microalgae are unicellular species, produce unique products like carotenoids, antioxidants, fatty acids, enzymes, polymers, peptides and toxins whereas macroalgae popularly known as sea weeds are multicellular, fast growing plants mainly utilised for the production of food and hydrocolloids.
The lab is fully funded by external (both national and international) agencies and engages fully in research activities. The lab was initiated as an objective of collaborative research project by the Karunya Institute of Technology and Sciences of with W2E/BESI Inc., USA and the project focuses on “Factors affecting the Biomass Productivity in Microalgae”. Later the lab received the grants from DST – SERB, Govt. of India to research on Phycoremediation and production of high calorific biomass. The research lab particularly focuses on biotechnology based production of value added products by means of cost effective and energy efficient process. Projects by DST, DBT, NTRF and UGC enhanced the capacity of the lab by equipping with sophisticated equipments that cater to the Research and Development initiatives and training to research scholars, undergraduate and post graduate students and IAESTE interns.
ALGAE BIOMASS RESEARCH LABORATORY
The lab is equipped with major instruments like Algae growth Chamber, thermalcycler (PCR), Microscope with documentation systems, deep freezer and the facilities are available to carry out research work in the interdisciplinary areas of algal biotechnology. The ultimate aim of Algae Biomass Research team is to bring in a centre of excellence to carry out innovative product/process based R&D in Algae research.
Biosafety Class - II
The Biosafety facility established at the department of biotechnology belongs to the BSL Class-II category. It houses a BSL 2B Biosafety Cabinet with a virus burnout attachment. This facility provides researcher to work on moderate risk pathogens such as Influenza virus, Hepatitis virus, Hog Cholera Virus, Rabies virus bacteria such as Aeromonas, Mycobacterium leprae, Haemophilus, Klebsiella, Closterdium tetani, Enterobactrial species and fungi such as Candida, Cryptococus and also parasites such as Ascaris, Entamoeba, Plasmodium, Taenia solium, Trypanosoma etc.
The Real Time PCR facility recently established at the department of biotechnology is one of the cutting edge technologies available here at Karunya. It is a technology used to detect the presence of the desired nucleic acids and more importantly determine its concentration hence the name Quantitative PCR or Q-PCR. It is an extremely sensitive technique and has been employed for a wide variety of applications. Its applications include monitoring and quantifying gene expression which is used both in research as well as in clinical diagnosis such as cytokine profiling, cancer, diagnosis of infectious agents especially viruses and also in the assessment of viral load which helps in determining antiviral treatment.
Biotechnology department has well equipped research facilities in the field of phytotherapeutics covering the area of phytochemistry, plant tissue culture, DNA barcoding and Gene targeting. The Phytotherapeutic lab was established with the financially supported of DST-SERB and is equipped with High Performance Thin Layer Chromatography (HPTLC) and other instruments. Students are trained to identify and analyze the active compounds present in the plants , green synthesis of nanoparticles and characterization towards a therapeutic approach.
This enables further studies by quantifying the phytochemicals which is responsible for various therapeutic properties like anticancer, antidiabetic, wound healing properties, and so on. Ph.D scholars, IAESTE interns, undergraduate (B.Tech. Biotechnology) and post graduate (M.Tech. Biotechnology, M.Sc. Microbiology) students interested in the field of medical biotechnology exploring the traditional knowledge of the Indian medicine systems utilizing the available facilities in the lab. Around 54 indexed research papers have been published and 5 patents published of which 1 granted.