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Significant achievement of the Programme Area

In Aquaculture & Marine Biotechnology, the emphasis was on the development of new technologies and enhancing the production in aquaculture system shifting its focus towards the non-food sector. The research was targeted towards development of enzyme based aquaculture feed, spawning agents, surveillance, study on molecular markers and epidemiology for disease resistance, development of viral diagnostics, immunostimulants and anti WSSV compound. Aspects on molecular cloning and gene expression for alkaline protease and molecular epidemiology of white spot shrimp disease were pursued. DNA vaccines against Aeromonas spp. and immunodot-based diagnostic kit for detection of white spot syndrome virus (WSSV) in shrimp and prawn were also developed. An ELISA-based kit developed for detection of IgM of Indian major carps against Aeromonas hydrophila infection. Anti-WSSV formulation was made as a prophylactic measure in shrimp health management. Bio-surfactants production was standardised from marine wastes employing the Acinetobacter strains. Molecular fluorescent dyes attempted from sea cucumber tissues bioactive compounds for use in biomedical applications. Cell lines developed in brackish water species to stable cell lines useful in virus isolation. A protocol on better aquaculture management practices was developed through recirculatory and raceway system. In service training programme in molecular biology supported for fisheries scientists received good feed-back of training scientist to work in molecular biology. Marine biotechnology to harness new pharmaceutical, enzymes, biomolecules, therapeutic proteins, bio-markers, bio-sensors and bio-prospecting received greater attention. An Indo-Norway collaboration project on vaccine development for finfish and shellfish continued. The recombinant protein found highly immunogenic to freshwater fish species common carp and shown high potential for its vaccination. Vaccine development for seabass was carried out and antigenicity of outer membrane proteins (OMP), extra cellular protein (ECP) and Lipopolysaccharride (LPS) were evaluated. Development of Biopharmaceuticals, by product and bio-process development were given high priority. Major programmes on whole fish genome sequencing, marine actinomycetes and in service training programme for fishery professionals are being identified as the major priority during the Annual Plan-2013-14 for funding support.

The implementation of the project in various sectors of Aquaculture & Marine Biotechnology has created good impact among the Marine scientist in perusing research in molecular biology with a dedicated programme on in service training programme in molecular biology for fisheries and marine scientist. A technology know-how developed to prove techno-economic viability of aquaculture of non-traditional species for diversification in aquaculture has created good impact in the sector with strong inputs on vaccines and diagnostics to promote the sector. Marine resources have been exploited for high value commercial important product and process development. During the last plan (2007-2011) good number of publication amounting about 179 has been brought out in well reputed journals. 14 patents have been filed for product/ process development and about 90 JRF, SRF and Research Associate have been produced. 07 technologies have been successfully transferred to Industry for commercialisation. The research leads have been validated and refined technologies have been pursued for dissemination to the end users through training and demonstration activities through social development programme of department. New initiatives have been taken to set-up National Institute of Marine Biotechnology (NIMB) as an autonomous institute under the DBT to harness the full potential of the emerging marine biotechnology with strong foundation in basic research with a focus on translational research and technology development. The proposed institute will provide an interface between research and commercialisation of technology and will be an incubator for start-up companies. The theme areas will be dealt under the institute are Genomics, marine Biodiversity, Model organism, Marine extremophiles, Bio-energy, Bioremediation, Biosensors, Biomaterials, Bio-organisms and Bioinformatics including various business development model.