BY BIOVOICE NEWS BUREAU
The year ' 2016 ' had begun on a big note . A two-day Global Biotechnology Summit on “ Destination India ” was held on 5th and 6th February , 2016 at Vigyan Bhawan , New Delhi and inaugurated by Minister of Science and Technology , Dr Harsh Vardhan . The event showcased India ’ s Biotechnology strength and capacity and provided an opportunity to bring together all stakeholders to discuss opportunities , collaborations and to prepare a joint action plan for achieving the target of 100 billion US dollars for the Biotech sector by 2020 .
It was followed by series of new initiatives and achievements by the Department of Biotechnology ( DBT ), Ministry of Science and Technology , Government of India .
NEW POLICY INITIATIVES
National Biotechnology Development Strategy 2015-20
The National Biotechnology Development Strategy of the Department of Biotechnology was unveiled by Minister for Science and Technology and Earth Sciences , Dr Harsh Vardhan and Minister of State for Science and Technology and Earth Sciences , Mr Y S Chowdary in the presence of Secretary , DBT , Dr K VijayRaghavan and other key stakeholders in New Delhi .
The National Biotechnology Development Strategy-2015-2020 is the direct result of formal and informal consultations over the past two years with over 300 stakeholders including scientists , educators , policy makers , leaders of industry and civil society , voluntary and nongovernment organizations , regulators and international experts . The consultations offered an opportunity to discuss and evaluate technological , societal and policy aspirations , critical success factors as well as barriers that will impede growth and put them in newer and broader perspective and action plan . A roundtable discussion was held with key stakeholders to discuss the roadmap for 2020 . The key elements would be implemented in collaboration and partnership with Other Ministries , Departments , State Governments and international agencies towards achieving :
• Making India ready to meet the challenge of achieving US $ 100bn by 2025
• Launching Four Major Missions – Healthcare , Food and Nutrition , Clean Energy and Education
• Creating a Technology Development and Translation network across the country with global partnership-5 new clusters , 40 Biotech incubators , 150 TTOs , 20 Bioconnect centres
• Strategic and focussed investment in building the Human Capital by creating a Life Sciences and Biotechnology Education Council
Regional Centre for Biotechnology Bill , 2016
The Parliament passed The Regional Centre for Biotechnology Bill , 2016 . The Bill establishes Regional Centre for Biotechnology , an institution of education , training and research , under the auspices of United Nations Educational , Scientific and Cultural Organization ( UNESCO ) in the National Capital Region and declares it as an institution of national importance . The Gazette of India notification has been issued .
India is today a leading Vaccine Manufacturing Hub :
The Vaccine Grand Challenge Programme is under implementation to encourage novel and innovative vaccine related discoveries , accelerated development of candidate vaccines . Some major achievements are :
Rotavirus vaccine launched by Prime Minster : The first indigenously developed and manufactured Rotavirus vaccine ' Rotavac .' from an Indian strain 116E was launched by the PM Narendra Modi on 9th March , 2015 . The indigenously developed vaccine will boost efforts to combat infant mortality due to diarrhoea . ROTAVAC developed in collaboration with Bharat Biotech under the Public-Private Partnership mode is efficacious in preventing severe rotavirus diarrhoea in low-resource settings in India . ROTAVAC significantly reduced severe rotavirus diarrhoea by more than half - 56 percent during the first year of life , with protection continuing into the second year of life .
Malaria Vaccine : Vaccine for falciparum malaria is under
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