Dr. Sudeshna Shyam Chowdhury M.Sc., Ph.D.
Head of the Department
The Microbiology Department of the St. Xavier’s College (Autonomous), Kolkata started its journey almost 15 years ago. Since its inception, the endless enthusiasm and indomitable zeal to attain perfection of both the faculty and the students made the department the best in research activity in the college. The able guidance and the heartfelt endeavor of the entire faculty have enabled the Department to prosper and grow into its present extortionate stature.
The Department of Microbiology has initiated two year Microbiology M.Sc. course on August 2010 and now has 10 faculty members representing different domains of Microbiology. Departmental students are usually involved in projects and present their papers in Indian Science Congress. The microbiology department conducts a two day seminar on Modern trends in Microbiology where the of 2nd year graduate students presents review papers. The field of microbiology is taken up by Dr. Arup Kumar Mitra, Ms. Debjani Dutta, Ms. Lopamudra Roy and Dr. Madhumita Maitra. The subject of Biochemistry is taken up by Dr. Sudeshna Shyam Choudhury, Dr. Kasturi Sarkar and Dr. Jaydeep Ghosh. Dr. Anindita Banerjee’s expertise lies in the field of plant tissue culture and plant physiology. The field of molecular biology is taken by Dr. Mahasweta Mitra Ghosh. The Biophysical part of the syllabus is taught by Dr. Jaydip Ghosh and Dr. Riddhi Majumder.
Module based syllabus encompassing Microbiology, Biochemistry, Biophysics, Molecular Biology, Genetics, Instrumentation and Biostatistics.
Students are taught with audio and visual aids in the field of modern Biology.
Department has encouraged student based research and they have been participating in different seminars within and outside the state and have received many laurels for the Institution.
The students are encouraged to take up industrial or lab based training in the form of summer internship.
The Department also undertakes student centric learning in the form of paper presentations, writing and critical appreciation of scientific papers, etc.
All these activities clearly indicate that the Department is different from other traditional teaching learning centre in the form of student opportunity and development.
Staff Members:(Refer to MTIM Journal DNA 2018 for details)
- Actively participates in research and publication of books.
- Recognized as PhD guides and with projects (major and minor) funded by national agencies.
- Three major and three minor research projects are running in the Department.
- The teachers have also prepared unique textbooks on Environmental studies, microbiology and practical manuals.
- The teachers are engaged in consultancy and analysis of industrial samples.
- Students from other colleges have completed their M.Sc. dissertation in Microbiology from the department.
- Students from other technical colleges have completed their summer training from the department.
- Students have completed their M.Phil and PhD thesis under the guidance of departmental professors.
- The entire faculty is involved in various publications for referred journals.
- The association of faculty with a national level education programme titled SWAYAM which disseminates MOOC courses.
Brief synopsis of the distinguished accomplishments by the faculty members:
- Dr. Arup Kumar Mitra has received a major DST project and collaboration with Dr. S. Das of Peerless hospital along with an industrial project. Tamanna Sultana and Bikram Dhara joined as Ph.D. scholars this year and started working under him.
- Dr. Mahasweta Mitra Ghosh has received a major DST project and Ms. Meesha Singh has joined as Ph.D. scholar this year under her guidance.
- Dr. Anindita Banerjee has contributed an article to the �Journal of Biomedicine and Pharmacotherapy� published by Elsevier publication.
- Dr. Arup Kumar Mitra, Mrs. Debjani Dutta and Mrs. Lopamudra Roy have published a Comprehensive book of Microbiology named �Comprehensive Microbiology� (Publication- Current Book International).
- Dr. Sudeshna Shyam Chowdhury has published the book Fundamentals in Microbiology.
- Dr. Arup Kumar Mitra, Dr. Madhumita Maitra, Dr. Kasturi Sarkar and Dr. Sudeshna Shyam Chowdhury and Dr. Anindita Banerjee have Ph.D. scholars working under their guidance.
- The entire faculty is involved in various publications of referred journals.
- The department hosted the first two chapters in �Frontiers in Biological Sciences�, an international seminar. The first chapter was held on 31st January, 2018 and was graced by the lectures of eminent scientists. The notable speakers in the first chapter were Professor Caroline Austin from the Institute for Cell and Molecular Biosciences (UK), Dr. Suvendra Nath Bhattacharya (IICB, Kolkata), Dr. Subhra Chakraborty (NIPGR, New Delhi)., Dr. Samir Kumar Pal (S. N. Bose National Centre for Basic Sciences, Kolkata. The notable speakers in the second chapter held on 21st August, 2018 were Dr. Ajay Basal (University of Ottawa), Dr. Arkadipta Bakshi (University of Wisconsin, Madison), and Dr. Bidisha Sinha (IISER, Kolkata).
- Along with six other professors, Dr. Mitra (as the coordinator) is associated with a national level education programme titled SWAYAM which disseminates multi-online open access courses (MOOC). This programme is based on current choice-based credit system (CBCS) syllabus of UGC and would be disseminated in 10 different courses.
- Got top positions in the University and admissions into different M.Sc. Programme all over India.
- Every year students get the opportunity in summer fellowship or POBE programme of the JNCSR (Jawaharlal Nehru Centre for scientific research).
- Also, an Indian patent have been submitted on Hand Sanitizer by UG students.
- Participates actively in National Seminars including the Indian Science Congress, where students present papers as posters or oral presentation.
- The research scholars have won the prestigious Young Scientist Award (in 2015 and 2019) at the ISC and have also grabbed the best paper award (in 2019) at the SSC.
- Also, an Indian patent have been submitted on Hand Sanitizer by UG students.
Notable achievements by students this year:
- Shivranjani Baruah won the Khorana Scholarship 2018 at the University of California.
- Subham Pal secured the 1st rank in the ICMR NET Examinations.
- Deyasini Chakraborty cleared CSIR NET with a rank of 37 in December 2017.
- 3 of our B.Sc. students secured positions within the top 10 ranks in IITJAM 2018.
- Bedaprana Roy from M.Sc. 2nd Year won the best paper presentation award in international Conference on Integrated Management of Crop Diseases at TNB College, Bhagalpur University, presenting her paper titled �Utilizing the Effectiveness of Microbial Consortia as Biopesticide�. She was closely followed by Noyonika Mukherjee, who also presented in the same venture titled, �Development of a unique rhizospheric solid organic supplement for better crop productivity and bio-control of pathogens�.
- Aparajita Dutta, Riddhi Basu and Shalini Chakraborty presented a paper titled �Effectiveness of Microbial Consortia as Biopesticide� at the Department of Ecological Studies of International Centre for Ecological Engineering, University of Kalyani, and secured the 2nd position.
- Rajarshi Roy of M.Sc. 1st year gave an oral presentation on the �Management of diseases in A. esculentus by exploiting the useful benefits of Microbial consortia� at the national seminar- New Horizons of Integrative Biology hosted by CU, and secured the 2nd position along with Amrita Maity, Poushali Mondal, Monika Naskar and Sulagna Banerjee.
- Bedaprana Roy, Sohini Roy, Danial Parvez, Debina Bhattacharjee and Meghna Majumdar were awarded the 3rd prize for poster presentation on �Biotic Intervention in increasing Shelf life of fruits and vegetables� at the National Symposium on Advances in Biology organized by APJ Abdul Kalam Government College, Kolkata.
- Sagnik Das, Bodhisattwa Ghosh, Medha Basu, Nayan Ghosh, Rishi Basu, Anjoom Nikhat and Anushka Nath won the prestigious DST Inspire Scholarship.
- Anjoom Nikhat won the JBNSTS and is a scholar there.
- Srijan Das, Saundarya Biswas, Dyutika Banerjee, Anwit Sadhukan and Shuvrangshu Guha secured the 3rd position in the BITM Rotary Innovation Hub. They also won �Eureka� along with Nayan Ghosh and Anish Pyne. Eureka is an event in Sigma, the fest organized by our Science Association.
- Anuja Bothra, Roopali Khanna, Bodhisattwa Ghosh, Neha Bera, Aditi Das, Abhishek Goswami secured the 1st position at �Innovation Hub�, and Somali Mukherjee stood 2nd in �Art is a culture�. Both are events in Sigma.
- Barnava Banerjee, Nilanjan Bose, Kazi Nafizul Haque and Rumjhum Mukherjee have received admission in IIT, Bombay.
- Aritra Dutta, Susmita Chakraborty, Tiasha Sen and Sourik Dey have made into IIT, Roorkee.
- Ayan Mallick has got into IIT, Kharagpur.
- Shubhankar Saha and Debopriya Mukherjee have got into IISc.
- Srijan Das from B.Sc. 2nd year got selected for the prestigious JNCASR (Jawaharlal Nehru Centre for Advanced Scientific Research) POBE fellowship.
- 12 students have successfully completed MOOC under Dr. Mitra, Dr. Maitra and Dr. Chowdhury.
Dr. Arup Kumar Mitra has received a major DST – Arsenic mitigation from Plant microbe interaction along with an industrial project – Active Principles from mangrove plants and their anti-fungal, anti-bacterial and anti-cancerous properties sponsored by DBT.
One major project under Dr. Mahasweta Mitra Ghosh – Isolation of resistant bacteria from soil and their bioinformatics analysis sponsored by DBT.
Three minor UGC projects under Dr. Anindita Banerjee, Dr. Kasturi Sarkar and Dr. Sudeshna Shyam Choudhury respectively.
Air conditioned Lab with different state of art instruments, some of which are detailed below:
Incubator Shaker, Multiple autoclaves
UV Visible Spectrophotometer
Gel electrophoresis unit with transilluminator
Table top microcentrifuge
Microwave and Hot air oven
This department holds reputation for having students who are selected to various prestigious fellowships and institutions every year for their summer training. This year, one of our students have been selected for the prestigious Khorana Scholarship and is heading to the University of Wisconsin, Madison for summer internship. Many of our students have also qualified for the Indian Academy of sciences- SRFP fellowship and are placed in premium institutes all across the country like IISc Bangalore, IISERs, IITs as well as CCMB, Hyderabad for their summer training. Apart from this, students also intern in reputed laboratories like that of IACS, IICB, University of Calcutta, Jadavpur University and Bose Institute in Calcutta. Those interested in industry have also been sent for industrial training in companies like Cipla as well as Reputed hospitals including Institute of Neurosciences, CMRI and Medica.
Dr. Arup Kumar Mitra joined as the co-ordinator of EDC and successfully accomplished a project worth Rs. 5 lakhs that was sponsored by DST, Govt. of India.
The annual seminar Modern Trends of Microbiology- Chapter XV was organised by the department. 24 papers were presented and lectures were delivered by eminent scientists from across the globe.