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CSIR-NIO to Launch 90-day Cruise Missile to map Genomes in Indian Ocean

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First project to map genomes in Indian OceanCSIR-NIO (Council of Scientific & Industrial Research-National Institute of Oceanography) is set to launch a 90-day Scientific Cruise Mission to conduct genome & proteome mapping (nutrients) present inside single-cell organisms in the Indian ocean. It will be the 1st project to map genomes in Indian Ocean.

Objective 

  •  To strengthen India’s research into commercial biotechnology applications including anticancer treatments.
  •  To understand the response of ocean to Climate Change & nutrient stress.

Expedition

  • Around 30 scientists will be part of the expedition which will take place from Second week of March to mid-may.
  • The expedition will start from Visakhapatnam, Andhra Pradesh and will go up to 30°S, touch the waters between Australia & Maldives, then circle back to Goa, covering upto 9, 000 nautical miles by mid-May.
  • The Scientists will go up to 6 Kilometres into the Indian ocean to collect samples.

Mission under the Expedition

  • Identification & characterization of genes & proteins to understand the cellular level operations of organisms in the Indian Ocean.
  • To take samples of water, sediments, planktons & various organisms in search of genomes & micro-nutrients to strengthen India’s research into commercial biotechnology applications.
  • To map genetic diversity of organisms, micronutrients & trace metals in them.
  • To check presence of micronutrients such as Iron, Zing, Magnesium & trace-metals such as Cadmium, Cobalt, Copper and others.

Indian Ocean’s importance to Climate Change

  • Being the Third Largest Ocean (after Pacific & Atlantic Oceans) Indian Ocean plays a great role in functioning of climate & regulation of atmospheric oxygen.
  • Exploration of Indian Ocean at a genetic level will result in new insights into taxonomy for optimising conservation efforts.

Recent Related News:

i.CSIR-NIO of Goa & CSIR-NGRI of Hyderabad virtually signed a MoU with V.I. Il’Ichev Pacific Oceanological Institute, Far Eastern Branch, Russian Academy of Sciences (POI FEB RAS) in the field of Marine Sciences and Technology.

About CSIR-NIO (National Institute of Oceanography) 

Director – Professor Sunil Kumar Singh
Headquarters  – Dona Paula, Goa
Regional Centres – Kochi (Kerala), Mumbai (Maharashtra) & Visakhapatnam (Andhra Pradesh)