Biology, Biotechnology and Molecular Biology Workshops

Workshops provide an extended forum for small groups to exchange ideas on a specific topic of common interest. Biology workshops in the college are the meeting ground not only for students of B.Sc. (Honours) Botany, Zoology, Biomedical Sciences, B. Sc. (Programme) Life Science and Applied Life Science but also for the Faculty of these departments.

Recognizing that it is important that students get time to work using the state-of-the-art equipments available in the Biology laboratories, the faculty regularly conducts workshops on various aspects of Biology. Over the last few years faculty from the biology group, which includes teachers from Biomedical Sciences, Botany and Zoology departments, conduct the workshops for the students as well as for the college and school teachers.

1. Understanding complexities of life from molecules to System:  Concepts and tools

This workshop was aimed at providing practical training in basic understanding and concepts of biological tools and techniques to the biology students in 2008.  The workshop was designed to provide a solid understanding of specific topics such as

  • Microscopy, Fluorescence Microscopy
  • Centrifugation techniques and Cell fractionation
  • Chromatography – Paper and TLC
  • Isolation of DNA and Gel Electrophoresis of Proteins and DNA.
  • Cell and Tissue culture techniques
  • Drosophila Genetics – mono and dihybrid crosses.
  • Absorption spectra of chloroplast pigments.

Each session included an introductory talk on the techniques by a faculty member followed by students conducting the experiments in small groups. At this workshop teachers also got an opportunity to refresh themselves.

2. Basic Techniques in Molecular Biology

The month long workshop was organized for B.Sc (H) Zoology Part III students on the basic techniques in Molecular Biology in 2008.  Besides providing a hands-on experience on various instruments and methods used,  the participants were trained in methodologies involving isolation of Actinomycetes, a group of important antibiotic producing bacteria, from soil samples collected from sites in and around Delhi. The trainees obtained pure cultures of the isolates and screened them for the production of antibacterial and anti fungal compounds.

3. Summer workshop on 'Biology and Biotechnology of Actinomycetes'

Ringing true the concept to taking education further than just bookish knowledge a three-week workshop on “Biology and Biotechnology of Actinomycetes" was organized in 2009.  Student-participants in the workshop were given hands-on experience of diverse aspects including preparation of culture media, maintenance of strains, microscopic observation of isolates and screening thereof for traces of antibacterial activity, determination of minimum inhibitory concentration(MIC) of antibiotic compounds, spectrophotometric analysis of active extracts, isolation of plasmid and genomic DNA from isolates besides developing taxonomy of strains by constructing phylogenetic trees based on 16SrRNA gene sequences.  At the end of the three-week endeavour that participants had become well-versed in use of basic molecular biology techniques.

4. Biotechnology Laboratory Course Workshop for Teachers from Colleges of the University of Delhi

With the introduction of the new curriculum for B.Sc Programme and the updations of the Biology syllabus, there arose an urgent need to update the experimental skills of teachers. Acharya Narendra Dev College was selected to hold the workshop to 'teach the teachers' of the B.Sc. Programme Life Sciences.  In collaboration with Institute of Life long learning, University of Delhi, 5-day workshop was conducted in the college. In this workshop 30 teachers from across all colleges of DU teaching Biology participated. A manual detailing all protocols was prepared and distributed among the participants. Experiments included western blot, southern blot, Genomic DNA and plasmid DNA isolation, restriction digestion, ligation and transformation besides computer based modules on bioinformatics. The workshop was very well organized and hence highly appreciated.

5. Orientation of Master Trainers in the 'Laboratory Techniques and Practical Work in Biology at Higher Secondary Stage'

In collaboration with NCERT, the college organized 3 days workshop in 2010 for the teachers teaching biology in 11th and 12th standards in various public and government schools in and around Delhi. The aim of the workshop was to provide the basic understanding/principle of the newly introduced practicals in school curriculum. The topics covered in the workshop included.

  • Isolation of DNA by spooling method
  • Cell cycle (Mitosis and Meiosis)
  • PCR and gel electrophoresis
  • Soil analysis
  • Photosynthesis
  • Pollen germination

A hand on training was provided to the school teachers and the hand outs of all the experiments conducted were given to the participants.