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Head of Department Message

Welcome to the Department of Industrial Biotechnology, Atta-ur-Rahman School of Applied Biosciences,(ASAB)

The vision of the Department of Industrial Biotechnology is to expand knowledge in Basic and Applied Science & Technology. We are proud to deliver outstanding postgraduate professional education like MS and PhD that offers exciting and varied career opportunities. We aim to deliver excellent teaching facilities and research across the broad span of modern Industrial Biotechnology. The academic programmes are assisted by regular and visiting faculties and are offering some of the finest resources available to a modern day scholar.

Though young as a department, we have done spectacularly well to develop the spirit of entrepreneurship and ideas that can be scaled up and be of potential benefit to the industry. The scholars are well trained in multi-dimensional fields and the research being carried out reflects the expertise, creativity and initiative of the faculty who set the research agenda, and who have a long tradition of engaging with their colleagues and students to work across disciplines. We, at the National University of Sciences & Technology (NUST) in general, ​and at School of Applied Biosciences in particular, apply practical science and pursue the development of human resources who can contribute to the international and local communities through their broad knowledge and global perspective.

Biotechnology has traditionally been associated with the medical and pharmaceutical sectors. However, Pakistan has a broad capability in industrial biotechnology with both research and commercial activities across several key areas including biofuels, biomaterials, chemicals and enzymes and bio-mining. Industrial biotechnology – also known as white biotechnology – uses enzymes and micro-organisms to make bio-based products in sectors as diverse as chemicals, food and feed, healthcare, detergents, paper and pulp, textiles and bioenergy. A number of products already on the market include biopolymer fibres used in both construction and household applications, biodegradable plastics, biofuels, food processing, lubricants and industrial enzymes. Biotechnological processes also constitute a key element in the manufacturing of some antibiotics, vitamins, amino acids and other fine chemicals.

Owing to their vast applications in various fields, the value of the biochemicals (other than pharmaceuticals) is expected to increase from 1.8% of all chemical production in 2005 to between 12% and 20% by 2015 according to the latest surveys. Moreover, a recent report by the World Economic Forum (WEF) concluded that converting biomass into fuels, energy, and chemicals has the potential to generate upwards of $230 billion to the global economy by 2020.

Finally, we are committed to building on our role as a ‘thought leader’, by making the insights of our researchers and teaching staff widely available. We also seek out leading international specialists for collaborative research, to run workshops, give public lectures and participate in forums, and are increasingly harnessing the zeal to attract the best of the very best.

I warmly invite you to explore the benefits of partnering with us.

Dr Saadia Andleeb

Head of Department, Industrial Biotechnology