Aligarh: Aligarh Muslim University (AMU) has signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with the Biotechnology and Biological Sciences Research Council (BBSRC) in UK. The MoU was signed under AMU’s Combating Infectious Diseases of Livestock for International Development (CIDLID) programme. The programme is meant for supporting the International Collaborative Research Project on liver fluke vaccine development, in order to address the Indian as well as global fasciolosis problem, which is also assuming zoonotic dimension.
As per sources, the project is sanctioned for a period of three years. It will provide an excellent opportunity to AMU faculty members as well as research scholars and students to interact with world's leading scientists in parasitology. The project is mainly aimed at identifying and to validate the new vaccine and drug targets using molecular biology tools to combat the liver fluke menace in livestock since the infection rate could go as high as 70-80 %, as a result Indian farming community incurs huge economic losses.
Furthermore, the collaborating partners include the Queen's University of Belfast, UK, Aberystwyth University, UK, Tamil Nadu Veterinary Animal Sciences University, Chennai, India and AMU where Prof. SMA Abidi, Section of Parasitology, Department of Zoology, AMU, will act as Principal Investigator, while Dr. M Khalid Saifullah of the same department will be the Co-Investigator.
Dr. Gerry Brennan, Director, Imaging Facility, Queen's University of Belfast, UK and also visiting professor at Alagappa University, Tamil Nadu, visited AMU to get the contract signed. Prof. V.K. Abdul Jaleel, Registrar, AMU signed the MoU on behalf of the university. Prof. M. Saleemuddin, Coordinator of Interdisciplinary Biotechnology Unit, Prof. Asif Ali Khan, Dean, faculty of Life Sciences, Prof. Pervez Mustajab, Controller of Exams, Prof. SMA Abidi, Principal Investigator, Prof. Wajihullah and Dr. M. Khalid Saifullah were present on the occasion.