LPU’s MSc (Hons) Biotechnology student, Srishti Bhandari has won ‘Best Research Review Paper Writing Award’ at the prestigious ‘National Research Paper Writing Competition- 2021’. The competition was held under the aegis of Government of Uttar Pradesh and National Service Scheme (NSS). A broad panel of 38 eminent scholars of the ranks and awardees of Padma Shri, Directors, Vice-Chancellors, Scientists, Surgeons, Judges, Emeritus Professors and Secretaries with Governments adjudged the winners. Srishti’s innovative research review paper will now be published in internationally recognized ‘Mindshare Yuva Book Series’ of Young Scholars. Her winning paper is titled as- “CRISPR/Cas9 an Embryo Genome Editing System: A Review”.

CRISPR/Cas9 is a Nobel Prize winning technology which is to edit genes by precisely cutting DNA. It is a simple technology yet a powerful tool for editing genomes. It allows researchers to alter DNA sequences and modify gene function. Its many potential applications include correcting genetic defects, treating and preventing the spread of diseases and improving crops. These technologies allow genetic material to be added, removed, or altered at particular locations in the genome. LPU student’s review discusses that despite the benefits, there are still ethical problems surrounding the use of embryos. Nobel Prize was awarded jointly in 2020 to a USA Professor and a Director in Germany for ‘CRISPR/Cas9 genetic scissors: a tool for rewriting the code of life’.

Around 600 research papers were submitted from across India for three rounds of the ‘Young Scholars’ competition. Judges recognised the exemplary research work of the competitors for “Originality; Content; and, Quality”, which are attributed as inherent qualities of an illustrious scientific paper. LPU student Srishti Bhandari, who hails from Saharanpur, qualified all rounds and got declared as one of the winners. She has received a certificate in this regard along with a cash prize.

To name a few, the panel of judges of the competition included Padma Shri, Former Director IIT Kharagpur Kasturi Lal Chopra; Padma Shri and Former Vice Chancellor Mahendra Singh Sodha; Former Secretary (Government of India) Naveen Verma; and, many more. All of them made evaluations and declared the winners.

Illustrative, this national level research paper competition was organized for graduate, post graduate and research scholars of recognized institutions of India, including all IITs, IISc, State and Private Universities. The competition aimed to honour the exemplary research work of young scholars of India, for which students had submitted their original research papers on different topics of their choice. It was to ignite young minds of the country for inculcating research skills and come up with best research idea to work upon in future.

Worth mentioning, LPU’s academic system is very rigorous and has prepared its students research-oriented by working on the recent topics related to research and industry-oriented problems. HoD at LPU’s Department of Molecular Biology and Genetic Engineering (School of Bioengineering and Biosciences), Dr Umesh Goutam informs that Srishti’s keen interest in research, and a passion to learn about recent techniques in biotechnology motivated her to write this winning research review.