Natural Product Biotechnology Group
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I am fortunate to be appointed at IIT Kharagpur, where decision on what to teach in a subject lies entirely with the concerned teacher. I utilize this academic freedom to develop a subject in my own way, from original literature, using textbooks only for background information. I always use blackboard and coloured chalks to teach my students the basis of metabolic engineering for manipulating natural product biosynthesis in medicinal plants. I believe that chalk and board is the best medium of transmitting knowledge from one generation to other. We as students also experienced this from our teachers. Even in this materialistic world, students sometime become emotional and do recognize their teacher's effort and sincerity for the subject. Past students write email on 5th September, "Your board work and teaching, I miss here (in US)"; really delighting! I am passionate about teaching too. Thus my teaching job is fulfilled.

Day by day thou art making me

worthy of the simple, great gifts that thou gavest to me unasked-this sky and the light, this body and the life and the mind-saving me from perils of overmuch desire

(from Tagore’s “Gitanjali”)

I offer an unique elective at postgraduate level that stemmed from the discovery in the area of contemporary natural product biotechnology research worldwide.

Pharmacognosy & Metabolic Engineering (AG 60132)

Pharmacognosy, ethnobotany and drug discovery. Phytomedicines and botanical drugs. Major natural products in plants: Alkaloids, phenolics and terpenes. Complementary medicines, Modern tools of phytochemical analyses. Concepts of metabolic loading and flux control analysis. Metabolic phytochemistry: Basic secondary metabolic pathways, Discovery of new enzymes and genes of plant natural product biosyntheses, Identification and application of transcription factors involved in secondary metabolism. Inhibition and overexpression of genes of natural product biosynthesis. Structural elucidation of enzymes involved in plant secondary metabolism. Combinatorial biosynthesis of plant natural products. Future of natural product biotechnology – molecular pharming. Selected case studies from classic and contemporary research findings.

Other subjects I contribute in teaching

At the undergraduate level: 

  • Science of the Living Systems (BS 20001)
  • Agricultural Biotechnology (AG 29004)

At the postgraduate level

  • Advanced Plant Physiology (AG 60105)
  • Crop Breeding & Biotechnological Applications (AG 60032)
  • Modern Genetics (AG 60091)
  • Secondary Metabolism in Microbes and Plants (BT 60015)
  • Biotechnology of Plant Metabolites (BT 60004)

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