SRINAGAR: Multidisciplinary Centre for Advanced Research and Studies (MCARS), Jamia Millia Islamia has launched a two-year degree course for a Master in Virology. The deadline for filing applications is October 10, 2022.
The course will provide students with theoretical knowledge in various domains of viruses with a specific focus on pathogenic viruses, their diagnostic methods, molecular pathways of viruses and recently developed therapies such as immune therapies and vaccines.
Candidates can apply for the courses online. The date for the entrance exam will be notified separately. There are 20 seats for MSc Virology and its tentative fee is Rs 90,000 per annum. Applicants aspiring for Virology should have a bachelor or BTech in Science or disciplines specialisations like microbiology, life sciences, bioscience, virology, biotechnology, biochemistry, chemistry or BVSc/BSc MLT or MBBS/BDS or food technology genetics toxicology or any other related subject from a recognised university or institute with at least 50 per cent marks or equivalent grades. They should also have Biology as one of the major subjects in 10+2 level or equivalent essential.
During the two-year course duration, students will undergo rigorous practical and hand-on-training. Importantly, students will learn how to detect the viruses using current state-of-the-art technologies like RT-qPCR, genome sequencing and CRISPR-Cas Diagnostic methods besides other assays such as immunophenotyping, flow cytometry, mass spectrometry and fluorescent microscopy. The course curriculum has been designed by eminent academicians in the field who have expertise in various domains of Virology, Biotechnology, Microbiology, Biochemistry, Infectious disease biology, and computational and structural biology.
Course coordinators Dr Jawed Iqbal, Dr Mohan C Joshi and Dr Tanveer Ahmad said that India has a high demand for trained professionals, especially in the field of virology.
“After the onset of COVID-19, MCARS was at the forefront in developing robust diagnostic methods and treatments,” Dr Jawad said. The faculty members of MCARS, it may be recalled here, developed the world’s first Saliva based SARS-CoV-2 detection using CRISPR-Cas technology. “That innovation became the foundation for this Masters course as we have witnessed over last two years that there is a huge supply chain constrain, particularly in terms of the trained professionals who could develop and perform these diagnostic assays, said the course coordinators.”
Dr Jawed Iqbal further said that MCARS has a strong collaboration with the major research institutes, hospitals and clinical laboratories in the country which will help students to gain more practical insights about infectious disease pathogenesis in general. Dr Madhumalar, Dr Somlata and Dr Amit also welcomed the MSc Virology programme at MCARS.
Professor Mohammad Zulfequar, Director MCARS said that courses like MSc in Virology are socially and economically beneficial for the country. We will be training the next generation of researcher scholars to further strengthen the healthcare system of our country which will also synergistically improve scientific research in life-threatening infectious diseases. The students will be trained by the best faculty members who have vast expertise in various domains of virology and biotechnology.
Dr SN Kazim, who himself is a trained virologist said that as the world is witnessing a sharp increase in viral infectious disease post-COVID, this course has importance more than ever and we at MCARS will ensure that the students get the best quality education and practical knowledge in virology from molecular diagnosis to disease treatment. Dr Kazim also said that Jamia Millia Islamia has initiated more clinical collaborations in recent years to ensure that the students will have both basic as well as clinical knowledge of the subject, which is more important in courses like Virology.
The course has been approved by the regulatory bodies and application forms are available HERE. The last date for the online applications is 10th October 2022.
This year, Jamia is conducting admissions through CUET for 10 out of its 59 undergraduate programmes. The admissions to the remaining were completed through the older process of its own entrance test and the academic year has already begun for them, which is why the university is keen on beginning the academic year soon for the 10 courses.