Current Affairs

Honour for Pakistan: ICCBS only centre in developing world trains’ scientists of advanced nations

Islamabad: The International Center for Chemical and Biological Sciences (ICCBS) Islamabad is the only research center in the developing world that provides training to scientists from advanced countries like Germany, France, and the United States.

The research centre has so far trained over 1,200 foreign scientists from some 35 countries and this journey of earning prestige for Pakistan continues. In addition, ICCBS has trained over 1,500 PhD level scientists who are currently serving in the country’s top research institutions and industries.

This was informed by ICCBS Director Dr M Iqbal Choudhary during a press conference in Islamabad on Tuesday evening. Dr Iqbal Choudhary said that ICCBS was established through the contribution of the private sector in 1966.

While mentioning services of ICCBS for the country during covid-19 Dr Choudhary said that the ICCBS’s National Institute of Virology (NIV) conducted over 140,000 PCR-based tests, helping the national institutions in their fight against covid-19. To achieve the objective, NIV placed several PCR machines and deputed highly trained virologists in the Indus Hospital.

Dr Choudhary mentioned that so far 70 full genomes of SARS-CoV-2 virus have been sequenced and globally reported from the genome center of the ICCBS and 350 genetic mutations have been identified by the center.
The dedicated scientist said that ICCBS’s Industrial Analytical Center (IAC) is the largest industrial support facility of Pakistan in the academic setup, adding that it has initiated 24 hours testing services of items manufactured locally to fight the pandemic.

He said that the ICCBS’s Center for Bioequivalence Studies and Clinical Research (CBSCR) conducted clinical trials as per international standards on two traditional medicines, prescribed in China.

This was the only center at that time to conduct clinical trials in search of better treatment of the covid patients in Pakistan, he added.
It is to mention here that the ICCBS is one of the finest academic research establishments of chemical and biomedical sciences in the developing world. This center has won more international awards than any other institution in Pakistan.

These international awards include Islamic Development Bank Prize for the Best Science Institution (twice 2004 and 2010), World Health Organization Collaborating Center. This is UNESCO Category II center.

He said that the center’s research in the frontier fields of molecular medicine, genomics, nanotechnology, organic synthesis is published in over 8,500 research papers in leading international journals, including a few in international peer reviewed impact factor journals of Bentham Science Publishers.

Some of the discoveries of commercial relevance were protected by over 100 national and international patents, and are in various phases of development with industries, including a Rs. 200 million projects with Searle Pakistan, he highlighted.

He said that along with outstanding academic services, the center has been engaged in industrial and community services. It operates Pakistan’s most modern Sindh Forensic DNA and Serology Lab, supporting the legal system in the province of Sindh.

ICCBS provides world class analytical and consultancy services to over 700 industries through its ISO 9,000 and ISO 17,025 certified center, and has helped Pak customs to increase its revenues several fold.

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