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TIFAC ties up with industry for pharmacogenomics centre

Our Bureau

New Delhi , Aug. 16

THE Technology Information Forecasting and Assessment Council (TIFAC) recently tied up with companies including SRL Ranbaxy and Hewlett Packard to set up a Centre of Relevance and Excellence (CORE) on pharmacogenomics at the Karnataka-based Manipal Academy of Higher Education (MAHE).

Other companies that have contributed towards setting up the centre are the Bangalore-based Shrusthi Pharmaceuticals and Juggat Pharma, and the Hyderabad-based Silicon Insights.

Pharmacogenomics is a study aimed at developing effective and safe medications and doses that will be tailored to a person's genetic makeup. It studies how genes affect a person's response to drugs.

TIFAC has also decided to set up a CORE at the Delhi College of Engineering (DCE), which will be engaged in advanced research in fibre optics and optical communications.

Companies that have contributed towards establishing this centre include the Delhi-based Trinity Microsystems, the Mumbai-based Falcon Electro-Tek, and the Gurgaon-based Himachal Futuristic Communications, according to senior TIFAC officials. "While the MoU was signed recently, the centre will be opened up shortly," they added.

TIFAC COREs are set up with the resources pooled in from three itself, educational institutions and industry.

TIFAC puts in over 50 per cent in the initial setup cost. In terms of operating costs, the University concerned and industry together account for over 50 per cent.

"The idea is to make available the best of infrastructure in the labs of educational institutions and make the course material relevant as per the industry's needs," said an official.

TIFAC aims to set up around 30 COREs by the end of this year. It has around 17 COREs currently, spread across the country in areas of herbal drugs, agro and industrial biotechnology, and wireless technologies, among others.

Companies that have participated include Pepsi Foods, the Thapar group, IBM India and DSM Soft.

Areas targeted by TIFAC for excellence include food technology, chemical engineering, textile and leather technology and sensors.

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