The Three questions Of Science Fiction

There is a great deal of misunderstanding about what that particular branch of literature called Science Fiction actually consists of. Is it space-ships and monsters? Time machines? Galactic empires? Well, its all of those things, and often none of them.

Science Fiction, broadly speaking, is story-telling that deals with the impact of organized knowledge on human beings. Usually, this means technology, and the way it changes usand reveals about us. After all, most technology is an extension of our senses, attributes and desires: computers are brains, cell-phones are voices and ears, cars are legs, planes are the dream of flight.

Many classic S.F. films and books take place in worlds identical to ours, except for the creation of some new device, or the appearance of a new life-form. Others take place in worlds so apparently foreign that only the most dedicated and experienced reader can understand what is going on!

But at the core, there are three questions or musings most often asked or explored in any work with the Science Fiction label. Those three are:

1) What if?
2) If Only
3) If This Goes On

These three overlap considerably, but the first, What If?, is the most essential. What If the Martians attacked? What If eternal life was available at a price? What If we knew an asteroid would hit Earth in a year?

The second adds a bit of longing to the equation. If Only President Kennedy hadn’t been assassinated is the kind of question that leads to sociological and historical speculation, or the Alternate History branch of S.F. which has become tremendously popular in the last decade. If Only the gene for generosity (or anger, or bigotry) could be mapped If Only we could selectively prune bad memories

There is an emotional quality to the If Only questions, and they often speak to a sense of missed opportunity, roads not taken.

The third question, If This Goes On is tailor-made for cautionary tales. If we continue to pollute the environment If one party continues to dominate American politics If more women enter the management class If the space program continues to Privatize If human beings become better at modifying their physical characteristics

These questions are starting places for speculation. While it is easy to use any of them for trivial or absurd (and entertaining!) questions like What if a 300-foot radioactive lizard attacked Tokyo? they can also address profound issues, as in how would humanity change if we gained incontrovertible proof of intelligent alien life?

By concentrating on the question, or proposition, at the core of your story, it becomes easier to keep it from becoming a CGI-fest. Ask yourself how YOU would react to a given situation. How your family would reactyou know them well. Then friends. Political adversaries. Other nations, and people of other groups. Dig into the meat of it. Study history, and begin to grasp the way societies change in response to technology, for instance the Automobile, or Printing Press, or Computer.

The more deeply you delve, the more likely you will be to create a unique question with unique answers. Then people your world with breathing, believable characters responding as intelligent, feeling people have since the beginning of time. Your work will blossom and reach new levels

Even if it IS about a 300-foot radioactive lizard!

Employment Opportunities For Those Seeking Science Career

The world of science encompasses almost every living and non-living thing in this world. That means that you have a plethora of careers to choose from and the choice is literally endless. To help you out, we listed a few steps that you can follow while choosing your career in science.

Know what you like
As a student, you may have liked some subjects in science. Science careers require a lot of curiosity, competitiveness along with persistence and a tendency towards independent research. Try to match your skills with the qualities you have and this will provide an idea of what you would can choose for the future. Ideally, the science stream is divided into three sub divisions: Biology, Chemistry and Physics. Some people also consider mathematical sciences and computer sciences as a part of the science stream.

Careers in biology There are a thousand different careers that you can pursue in biology. You can choose to specialize in human biology, animal biology, plant biology, etc and pursue a range of different professions like cytologist, doctor, dentist, pharmacist, cell biologist, marine biologist, pest controller, soil scientist, botanist etc.

Careers in chemistry Science majors you can specialize in include biochemistry, chemical engineering, toxicology, inorganic chemical research, etc. Research and teaching careers in chemistry are always an option in the chemical field as well.

Careers in physics Physics careers involve theoretical foundations and computations and most physics professionals work in fields that require research, handling of mechanical devices etc. You can choose to be a physicist, biophysicist etc.

Careers in mathematical science The mathematical field can be divided into several subcategories for research and for practical applications. For example, students with a mathematical and software major can specialize in academia, education, strategic planning, information systems, operations research, software planning, design and development, and quantitative analysis. A mathematics and finance major can specialize in stock market analysis, portfolio management, prediction of movement in money markets, strategic financial management, option pricing etc. A statistics professional can work as an analyst in any field, predictive modeling specialization, security and defense.

Careers in computer science- Computer science can cover a range of different careers and it is one of the best career options at present.

Current trends
According the National Association of Colleges and Employers, engineering majors are the most successful at present. Degrees in science-based technical fields are more likely to result in higher-paying jobs right in the beginning of your profession. We do urge you to research each field as much as possible to get an accurate idea of how much you can expect in the form of salary.

Details About Computer Forensic Science Colleges

Forensic science colleges open the door for a career in criminal justice. If you want to follow a career in this field of activity, it would be best to start your training as early as high school with lots of classes of chemistry, physics and biology. These first steps in education are highly important for the continuation of the studies in an academic environment where the demands are more complex and the knowledge level superior. You can learn details on various computer forensic training colleges by searching by zip code and geographic region. Institutions could also provide informative materials on site or via email, upon request.

There are very many associates degree programs too, but the best way to build a solid career in criminal justice is to attend the courses of forensic science colleges that are accredited by the American Academy of Forensic Sciences and the Accreditation Commission. Bachelors degree programs take longer to complete; they are usually designed on a five-year structure, and if you need a continuation of the studies for an advanced forensic specialization, two-year MA programs are available. It is important to keep in mind several aspects before choosing between the various curricula available with forensic science colleges.

First of all, the programs available at colleges could have different aims. Make sure that you know where the training will lead you. This focus difference enables forensic science colleges to educate trainees that work for the same criminal justice system, in similar, yet distinct jobs. You can specialize in computer applied forensics, in crime scene investigation or work in a lab without being a supervisor. Such examples are definitely general and they do not refer to all the job possibilities. When your education is complete, the work level at which you’ll have access in forensic institutions will depend on the programs you’ve chosen in forensic science colleges.

There are some admittance conditions at forensic science colleges that result in a masters degrees. And tougher competition is easy to recognize at such forensic science colleges. Thus, classes of genetics, physics, calculus, immunology, biology and biostatistics are a must among several others. Moreover, a BA is also a necessity for the admittance to the MA programs, not to mention that any experience in forensic work is considered an advantage. Special extra courses will have to be followed if you lack experience in the forensic domain.

The Science Behind Natural Herbs And Supplements For Depression

Numerous studies from leading scientific organizations, including Harvard, Duke, University of Pennsylvania, Johns Hopkins, and the University of Toronto, have shown that natural nutritional supplements can be used to treat a host of physical and psychological ailments. Among these are depression, anxiety, obesity, bipolar disorder, insomnia, schizophrenia, hypertension, Alzheimer’s, ADD/ADHD, arthritis, diabetes, cardiovascular diseases, fibromyalgia, fatigue, headaches and more.

Here are some key nutrients that have been proven to reverse the effects of depression.

Omega-3 Fatty Acids

Omega-3s strengthen the immune system and produce chemicals in our body that help to alleviate inflammation. These fatty acids have been shown to protect us from many major health threats, such as stroke, heart disease, and arthritis. In addition, they aid in fighting depression, hypertension, Alzheimer’s disease, and ADD/ADHD.

A Harvard pilot study found that fish oil, found in krill oil, tuna, salmon, and mackerel, can be used to effectively treat depression and bipolar disorder. Another study of 70 depressed patients who had not responded to other treatments found that the group who took one gram of fish oil produced dramatically better results than the placebo. Omega-3s can also be found in nuts such as walnuts and many fruits and vegetables.


Chromium has been shown to be effective in treating depression, lowering blood sugar levels, reducing insulin resistance and helping to control weight gain. This essential mineral plays a primary role in the body’s ability to burn sugars, carbohydrates, fats and proteins to produce energy. Chromium has been shown to reduce appetite and contribute to weight loss.

Scientists at Duke University have found that taking chromium supplements reduces symptoms of atypical depression, and reduces carbohydrate cravings. Researchers at the University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill School of Medicine say that chromium picolinate can relieve depression in overweight people with a background of overeating.

Chromium deficiency contributes to depression, anxiety, fatigue, and unhealthy blood pressure levels. The average American diet is chromium deficient, due to modern agricultural practices. Only one in ten Americans have adequate amounts of chromium in their diet.


SAMe is a substance created naturally in the body from amino acids. As a supplement, it is widely used in Europe to treat depression, arthritis, and other ailments.

SAMe (S-adenosylmethionin) can help people who suffer from depression, and don’t respond to prescription treatments, according to a Harvard study. Another study published in BioMed Central Psychiatry found that SAMe significantly decreased symptoms of depression in HIV/AIDS patients over an 8 week period.

In addition to its effectiveness in fighting depression, research shows that SAMe is beneficial for joints and connective tissue, helps with arthritis and fibromyalgia, promotes liver health, protects against cardiovascular disease, and helps to slow the aging process.


Probiotics are beneficial bacteria that live in the digestive tract. They aid in the digestive process, and new research shows that they can alleviate symptoms of depression and anxiety.

A colon cleanse incorporating probiotics will clear the body of stagnant waste built up in the colon, restore your immune system, and greatly increase your ability to absorb nutrients. To get the maximum benefit, you need a probiotic supplement that contains more than 50 billion viable organisms, consisting of ten different bacterial strains.

A University of Toronto study found that a two-month probiotics regime boosted chronic fatigue symptoms and reduced depression and anxiety symptoms. Researchers at Baylor College of Medicine and M.D. Anderson Cancer Center found that probiotics slow the growth of certain cancerous tumors.

As far back as the late 1800’s, researchers like Nobel Prize-winning scientist Elie Metchnikoff began to acknowledge the importance of microorganisms in the gut and their relation to everything from digestion to immune health. Since then, countless scientists have succeeded in confirming Metchnikoff’s theories and developing new ways to effectively introduce beneficial microorganisms into the human body.

You can find probiotics in a variety of fermented or cultured foods, such as cheese, yogurt, buttermilk, sauerkraut, kefir, tempeh, and miso.


Tyrosine is amino acid which helps to produce adrenaline and dopamine, neurotransmitters responsible for regulating your mood. Inadequate levels of tyrosine in the body can result in depression.

Tyrosine is important to overall metabolic health. It is a mood elevator, and can be taken in supplement form to fight depression, anxiety, stress, and chronic fatigue. Tyrosine is an antioxidant and appetite suppressant as well.

One study involving two depressed patients who didn’t respond to antidepressants found that l-Tyrosine significantly reduced their depression. Another study involving one woman with a two-year history of depression concluded that she showed marked improvement from l-tyrosine treatment, with no visible side effects.


GABA (Gamma-aminobutyric acid) is an amino acid created naturally in the brain. It is involved with motor function, vision, and other basic brain activities. GABA is an inhibitory neurotransmitter, and its main function is to block stress-causing hormones like cortisol. GABA is also involved in the production of endorphins. Endorphins cause what is known as “runner’s high,” the feeling of calm and mental alertness you get during physical exercise.

GABA reduces stress, anxiety, and depression, relieves muscle tension, reverses Alzheimer’s disease, promotes weight loss, and helps you get a good night’s sleep. A deficiency of GABA may cause anxiety, stress, depression and nervousness, according to some studies. Doctors have recommended taking GABA in 200 mg doses three to four times daily, on an empty stomach.


5-HTP (5-Hydroxytryptophan) is an amino acid involved in the production of serotonin in the brain. A great deal of evidence suggests that taking 5-HTP can improve the symptoms of atypical depression. 5-HTP is often very effective on patients who are unresponsive to pharmaceutical antidepressants. In fact, several small studies have found that 5-HTP is equal to or better than pharmaceutical antidepressants in treating depression and anxiety.

5-HTP has been found to help with conditions associated with low serotonin levels, including depression, obesity, carbohydrate craving, insomnia, and fibromyalgia. It has been used to treat migraine headaches and promote weight loss as well.

L-Glutamine/ Glutamic Acid

Glutamine/glutamic acid, along with glucose, is one of the essential fuels for your brain cells. It helps with anxiety and depression, increases mental alertness, normalizes physical equilibrium, detoxifies ammonia from the brain, improves and soothes erratic behavior in elderly patients, improves your ability to learn, aids in retaining and recall in memory, helps with behavioral problems and autism in children, and stops sugar and alcohol cravings. Glutamine may improve IQ in mentally deficient children, enhance peptic ulcer healing, and it may be used to treat schizophrenia and senility.

A recent study published in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition found that just two grams of glutamine taken after a light breakfast produced a 430 percent increase in levels of Human Growth Hormone, which plays a major role in muscle growth by helping synthesize additional proteins in muscle fibers. HGH also helps you burn more fat for energy.


Phenylalanine is an essential amino acid, which increases production of the mood-elevating brain chemicals, dopamine and norepinephrine. Some clinical studies suggests that phenylalanine can be helpful as part of a comprehensive therapy for depression. Phenylalanine can reduce pain and inflammation, aid in memory and learning, and suppress the appetite. Phenylalanine may also help with arthritis, weight loss, menstrual cramps, and schizophrenia.

A study published in the Journal of Neural Transmission concluded that phenylalanine helped with depressed mood, anxiety, and sleep disturbances.



Passionflower can be taken to help with anxiety, insomnia, and stress-related disorders. It is a mild sedative, and helps to lower blood pressure.

According to a 2002 study published in the Journal of Clinical Pharmacy and Therapeutics, passionflower was effective in the treatment of generalized anxiety disorder compared to a pharmaceutical anti-anxiety medication.

Passionflower extract is also effective in reducing negative symptoms of menopause, such as hot flashes, insomnia, as well as emotional and behavioral disturbances.


Skullcap is useful for the strengthening and support provided in times of stress and is a remedy for nervous tension, headaches, agitation, anxiety, insomnia, hysteria, exhaustion and depression.

Skullcap is an antispasmodic which is useful for twitching muscles, trembling, epilepsy and heart palpitations. It useful as an aid when withdrawing from orthodox tranquilizers and antidepressants.

Skullcap has been used in combination with hormonal balancing herbs (such as chaste tree and false unicorn root) for premenstrual syndrome. As an anti-inflammatory, it can be used for arthritis particularly where the condition is aggravated by stress. Skullcap is useful in reducing fevers, enhancing digestion and stimulating the liver’s function.


Bilberry helps to control insulin levels, and is useful for stress, hypoglycemia, anxiety, and macular degeneration. Bilberry is used for chronic fatigue syndrome, hemorrhoids, diabetes, osteoarthritis, gout, skin infections, gastrointestinal (GI) disorders, kidney disease, and urinary tract infections (UTIs). It is also an effective antioxidant and diuretic.

Green Tea

Green tea is a powerful antioxidant, helping to protect against cancer, lower cholesterol, and regulate blood sugar. Recent research suggests that green tea may be an effective weight loss aid.

The antioxidants in green tea have been shown to boost immune system function, fight the signs of aging, support a healthy brain and liver, and aid in digestion.


Catnip is a member of the mint family. It is used as a treatment for anxiety, nervousness and sleeplessness. Throughout history, this herb has been used to produce a sedative effect. Traditional herbalists have used catnip to treat conditions like cancer, toothache and corns.


Chamomile is used to stimulate the appetite, reduce inflammation, and aid in digestion and sleep.

According to a study conducted by the University of Pennsylvania, chamomile treatment using a natural chamomile extract significantly reduces the symptoms of anxiety and depression.

Get Actuarial Science Coaching From Leading Institutes Of Delhi

What do you mean by Actuarial Science and what the student become after studying this course? Student who go for such course become an Actuary. Now the question arises what is an Actuary? And the answer is simple an Actuary is the one who tells what exactly the company can do in future and the status of financial aspects of any project in future.

An Actuary should posses all the characteristics like a mathematician, economist, statistician, charted accountant, legal expert, investment banker, business expert and analyst. Student who stays in Capital of India always look to get Actuarial Science Coaching from leading institutes of Delhi. Those who are looking to have a rich mosaic of actuarial life have to study hard to know the deep facts of any business and insurances.

An actuary works as an astrologer for business houses who judge the future and financial aspects of the company .We must say that you are reading this article because you are serious towards your future. Have you decided your goal what you want to be in your life? We are hereby introducing a carrier which will allow you to fulfil your dreams and to achieve success in the life.

An actuary is a master who utilizes his statistical and financial know-how for evaluation of fiscal and other risks. Actuarys Finance, Risk Management & Product designing skill-set are dynamically used in the arena of insurance, investment, project management, banking, health care etc. Actuaries carry out multiple roles from designing of product, pricing of product to financial planning & corporate planning.

Do you like Mathematics and enjoy solving various problems? Do you have good leadership quality, good analytical skill and good statistical knowledge? Then you can consider becoming an Actuary.

Many Delhi leading coaching institute can easily explain you that what actuaries are and what kind of job profile they handle? The actuary field also have two divisions one is SOA which means dealing with pensions, finance, and health and so on and another one is CAS in which property and casualty, insurance etc falls. It is most significant which area the student wants to expertise.

eGov KE Srinagar – Inaugural – Bipul Pathak, CommissionerSecretary , Science & TechnologyInformat

Please be the part of our Upcoming Event FIPS

Elets – A platform for disseminating creative ideas on ICT

Elets Technomedia is a technology media and research company that focuses on ICT in government, education, healthcare, agriculture and rural development sectors. Our mandate is to provide effective information on latest development in different ICT tools, techniques and their applications across our verticals through premier print publications, online portals and premier events, seminars, conferences and summits. Elets has created a name for itself as a technology media and research vendor of choice.


To strengthen and facilitate knowledge sharing platforms engaging with partners across the globe through International conferences to provide cross-cultural grounding to stakeholders and participants To provide stakeholders with a platform to share models of best practice, knowledge and experience on a range of issues in the domain of ICT in Governance, Education, Health, security, Urban and Rural Development To mobilise the communities towards creating a digitally informed knowledge society based on shared understanding

Elets Focus Areas

Elets provides an unmatched versatility for working with multiple partners and consultants to mutually share knowledge. With a vision to provide effective information on latest development in different ICT tools, techniques and their applications across various verticals with focused reference to governance, education and health, we

a) bring niche monthly publications;

b) provide knowledge exchange fora and

c) conduct research projects, primarily through Events & Conferences.

The Masters In Health Science (general Pathway) At The University Of Southampton Entry Requirements

To enrol on the University of Southamptons health science masters course general pathway, candidates do not need to be nurses, doctors or allied health professionals.

The normal requirement for entry to the health science masters course is a relevant first degree, or professional qualification at an equivalent level, in an appropriate discipline from an approved university or other institution of higher education.

The minimum classification normally expected for a health science masters degree entrant is a 2:1. However, candidates with a 2:2 will be considered if they can demonstrate their commitment to the programme and potential for successful completion.

Applicants who do not meet the above criteria will be considered for admission to the masters in health science programme on the condition that they provide evidence of appropriate professional experience and/or qualifications.

For example, appropriate qualifications to enrol on the masters in health science course might include: a diploma in physiotherapy, occupational therapy, podiatry, nursing, speech and language therapy, medicine, or psychology.

Applicants for the health science masters programme who do not have a good first degree are expected to demonstrate evidence of advanced studies, a relevant professional qualification at a suitable level, plus a minimum of 12 months relevant post-qualifying professional experience.

In addition, candidates for the masters course in health science whose first language is not English are required to reach a satisfactory standard in an approved English test.

Alternatively, such applicants may be admitted to the health science masters programme if they can demonstrate to the director of the language centre of the University that they have an adequate command of both written and spoken English language to follow the course.

More information about the MSc health science masters degree at the University of Southampton can be found on the Health Sciences website at

Useful Tips On Making A Science Fair Project

Whenever you want create a science fair project research, be certain that you are familiar with the objective of the research, acquaint yourself with your topic, become cognizant of the main factors of the research, make sure to preserve copies on the infos you collect, and don’t plagiarize.
Whether you don’t like it or not, science fair projects refer to anything which you might made at some point in your life as a student. An amazing science fair project is not complete without a project data to present the main principle and theories that could support your study. In case you don’t have an idea on how to make a science fair project report, try following the hints below for you create one:
Know the goal of the report
There is no reason in writing something if in case you don’t have any thoughts what it is for. The exact reason of your science fair project report is to provide extensive data that can assist you and other individuals realize why the research turned out the way it did. This would also serve as a general guideline for you as you proceed in your writing.
Orient yourself with your main topic
The important thing you need to be aware is to orient yourself with the main topic of your report. Determine as much as you can about some other innovations and experiments that are alike to your own. Be aware of the history of these types of essential studies and the several theories which support them. You must also identify the various meanings of essential concepts and words that are related to your project. Learning mathematical expressions that will help support your discussions can also be essential.
Become very mindful of the primary factors of the report
Your professor will offer you instructions on how to demonstrate the report and what components to include. Be very certain you can make a list of what your teacher says so that you will be aware of the particular requirements and guidelines. Mostly, a science fair project report will need a title, introduction and the aim of the research, the hypothesis or question, the materials used, the methodology, data and results, and a conclusion. Be very sure to be accurate and brief when you are creating these components.
Be sure to keep important notes on the info you are going to evaluate
All study and report needs you to review several sources that are related to your topic of choice. Be sure you have enough notes on regarding this information. This will allow you to have a good introduction and provide citations on the later part of your report.
Don’t ever plagiarize
Prevent from plagiarizing or claiming words or pictures that are not completely yours as your own. Make sure you place a citation which will let the reader know the exact source of any theory, image or report that you mention in your papers. Citations often involve the author’s name and the particular date of publication and these are shown as (Writer, time) immediatley following the reference in your papers. On the other hand, if you include a statement word for word from another work, be sure to place the words within the quotes and follow it up with a citation.
Even though many learners might hate composing science fair research reports, there is actually much to find out from the process and you could have pleasure if you try.

Biotechnology in Conservation of Agricultural Environment

Biotechnology in Conservation of Agricultural Environment

K. Sarala, Senior Scientist (Biotechnology) Central Tobacco Research Institute, Rajahmundry-533 105, A.P.

Increase in crop yield in agriculture in 1960s, in India, was mainly due to introduction of new high yielding varieties. This has necessitated intensive use of agro-chemicals (mineral fertilizers and pesticides). However, the increase in agri-inputs was not directly proportional to the yields realized. During 1946-1965, the chemical (fertilizers and pesticides) input consumption was 87.0 Million Metric Tonnes (MMT) and food production 90 MMT; where as in 1998-2001, chemical input consumption was 1000 MMT and food production 220 MMT. Thus, when compared to 1946-1965, a 12 fold increase of chemical fertilizer consumption resulted in only 2.5 fold increase of food production. These figures indicate that for each unit of additional food produced higher amount of chemical inputs were utilized (Alvares, 1999; http:/; The added inputs especially inorganic fertilizers, pesticides and weedicides have led to environmental problems. Progressive mechanization and mono-culture are other features that were added to Indian agriculture scenario after green revolution.

As a consequence of intensive agriculture natural resources were depleted, soils lost their natural fertility, soil microflora affected adversely, soil erosion increased and sudden and frequent apparition of new pests and diseases occurred. Excess use of fertilizers also spoiled soil health and adversely altered nutrient dynamics in the soil. Indiscriminate and injudicious use of pesticides contaminated the surrounding atmosphere, killed beneficial insects, soil micro flora and fauna and contaminated ground water. In addition to pest resurgence and new biotype / pest development minor pests became major pests and pests developed resistance to regularly used pesticides. All these things disturb the environmental balance. The present paper deals with applications of Biotechnology in alleviating these affects.

Plant Biotechnology

Plant biotechnology is a revolutionary new field that harnesses the knowledge gained over more than half a century of basic plant research to the benefit of man kind. Agriculture is already realizing huge benefits from improved crops developed through biotechnology, which shows remarkable resistance to insect damage, markedly reduced dependence on herbicides, improved yield levels, higher photochemicals etc.

Agricultural biotechnology helps to alleviate the above ill effects of intensive agriculture through the development of bio-fertilizers, bio-pesticides, and disease and pest resistant varieties, and genotypes with higher water and nutrient use efficiency. All these aspects are discussed below.


Some alternatives to the use of mineral fertilizers are green manures, composts and bioearths, earth worm manure, crop and agro industrial residues and biofertilizers.

The native soils harbor microorganisms like bacteria, actinomycetes, fungi, algae, protozoa etc. These microorganisms enrich the nutrient quality of soil. Plants have a number of relationships with these fungi, bacteria, and algae. Few of the useful microorganisms can be produced in the form of Bio-fertilizers and added to the soil for improving the soil fertility and plant nutrient uptake.

Bio-fertilizers are the preparations containing live or latent cells of efficient strains of nitrogen fixing, phosphate solubilizing or cellulolyotic micro-organisms used for application to seed or composting areas with the objective of increasing the numbers of such micro-organisms and accelerating those microbial processes which augment the availability of nutrients that can be easily assimilated by plants(Ghosh, 2003). Some of the microorganisms being used as biofertilisers and their uses are given in Table 1. Table 1. Biofertilizers and their utilities S.No.Bio-fertilizerutility 1.RhizobiumFix atmospheric nitrogen in symbiotic association with legume plants forming nodules in roots (stem nodules in Sesabaniam rostrata) 2.AzotobacterBeneficial to cereals, millets, vegetables, cotton and sugarcane. It is free living and non-symbiotic nitrogen fixing organism produces certain substances good for the growth of plants and antibodies that suppress many root pathogens 3.AzospirillumNitrogen-fixing microorganisms beneficial for non-leguminous plants also produce growth promoting substances. 4.Blue Green Algae (BGA)Photosynthetic nitrogen fixers and are free living. Found in abundance in India. Add growth-promoting substances including vitamin B12, improve the soil’s aeration and water holding capacity and add to biomass when decomposed after life cycle. 5.AzollaAn aquatic fern found in small and shallow water bodies and in rice fields. It has symbiotic relation with BGA and can help rice or other crops through dual cropping or green manuring of soil. 6.Phosphate Solubilizing Bacteria(PSB) The PSB are life forms that can help in improving phosphate uptake of plants in different ways. The PSB also has the potential to make utilization of India’s abundant deposits of rock phosphates possible, much of which is not enriched

In India, total Biofertilizer production capacity of public and private sector units is 18200 tonnes and total estimated Biofertilizer production is 10,000 tones during 2006-07. The Biofertilizer demand for the year2011 has been estimated at 30,000 tonnes by a recent expert committee constituted by the Ministry of Chemicals and Fertilizers. This clearly indicated that there is a large scope of biofertilisers industry in India.

Integrating biologicals in pest management

The adverse affects caused by excess use of pesticides can be reduced by following integrated pest management (IPM) approach i.e. integrating chemicals with biologicals in the pest management. This approach not only reduces the crop losses due to pests but also make agriculture more sustainable. Botanical pesticides and biocontrol agents offer immense scope in IPM


Biopesticides are biorational and help to create Natural epizootics. They are inherently less harmful than conventional pesticides. They suppress, rather than eliminate, a pest population. Biopesticides are effective and often quickly biodegradable, present no residue problems and mostly self perpetuating.

Biopesticides, particularly microbial biopesticides, have virtually all the health safety and environmental properties that one would desire in a pesticide. The ecological fallacy and the individualistic fallacy need to be studied in detail.

Microbial insecticides are come from naturally-occurring bacteria, fungi, viruses (Ramarethinam, 2006). Various details of biopesticides including mechanism, pests and crops etc. are given in Table 2.

Table 2. Biopesticides their source and mechanism in pest control

Biopesticide type SourceNature/organismMechanismUsed againstCrops benefited Natural productPlant-Neem Vitex GarlicBiochemicalsAntifeedant, growth regulation, oviposition and mating disruptionInsect pestHorticultural, plantation and plain crops MicrobialsBacteria Bacillus thuringiensis(Bt) InfectionInsect pests B. sphaericus, PseudomonasAntibiosisDisease VirusNuclear polyhedrosis viruses, Granulosis virusesInfection resulting in epizooticsInsect pest FungiBeauveria, Metarhizium, Paecilomyces, NomuraeaInfection resulting in epizooticsInsect pests Trichoderma GliocladiumAntagonism and AntibiosisFungal disease of plants ProtozoaNosema, Thelohania, VairimorphaEpizooticsInsect pests PheromonesPheromonesBiochemicalsMating disruption, lure and kill, or insect monitoring strategiesInsect pest Genes or Plant-pesticide :Desired genes from a known sourceBiochemicalsConfer tolerance of herbicide application or resistance to attack by viruses or insectsInsect pest and disease

Market potential of biopesticides in India

The domestic market of biopesticides is in infant stage still – despite decades of existence, biopesticides are considered as marginal products. Virtually bereft of buyers and sellers. Awareness about the advantages of biopesticides is abysmally low as compared to the west,” this is affecting their demand adversely. Manufacturers claim that the projected demand for biopesticide has failed to become a reality. Rough estimates by the experts indicated a less than 2 per cent market share for Biopesticides in India (Agriculture today, Jan, 2005).

Agricultural Biotechnology – Varietal Development

Using different biotechnological techniques varieties having higher yields, disease and pest resistance, fertilizer responsiveness, herbicide tolerance, higher water/fertilizer use efficient, drought resistance etc can be developed. Biotechnology offers various advantageous over conventional breeding in developing crop varieties (Table 3). It employs novel technologies for creating variability, gene transfer, selection of segregating generations, transgenic development etc. Time taken for breeding a variety can be substantially reduced through biotechnology approach. Gene silencing (“switching off” of a gene by a mechanism other than genetic modification) and gene attenuation (to stop translation of an mRNA of a gene when certain conditions are not met) strategies can be employed to develop desirable genotypes.

Table 3. Agricultural Biotechnology vs. conventional breeding in varietal development

S.NoParameterAgricultural BiotechnologyConventional Breeding 1Creation of variabilitySomaclonal variationCreate through hybridization of parents Gamato clonal variation Proto clonal variation In vitro mutations 2Gene transferInter specific Mostly intra-specific, rarely inter-specific Inter generic 3Selection In vitro selectionPhenotypic selection Marker assisted selection 4GenesIsolated genesUses available variability Synthetic genes 5Gene transferAgro bacterium MediatedCrossing Gene gun Protoplast Fusion 6Time taken for breedingCan be reducedFairly long 7Trait expressionGene silencingCan’t be used Gene attenuation etc.,

Biotech crops in the world

Number of crop varieties were developed using various biotechnological approaches. Among them, Flavr savr tomato is the first transgenic crop released for commercial cultivation in USA in 1995. Later, number of pest and disease resistant varieties were released in cotton, maize, potato, soybean, tomato etc in different countries. Most of the cases the genes are cry genes conferring resistance to lepidopteron pests followed by viral genes. Pest resistance varieties substantially reduce the amount of pesticide use, there by avoids environmental problems.

From 1996-2007, global biotech crop area increased from 1.7 m ha to 114.3 m ha. 23 countries are growing biotech crops viz. soybean, cotton, maize and canola, 13 biotech mega countries growing 50,000 ha or more of biotech crops. The area covered by biotech crops in industrial countries is more compared to developing countries. These statistics indicates the increased awareness of the world farmers about biotech crops (James, 2007).

Biotech crop status in India

Many public and private sector institutions are involved in the development of biotech crop varieties in India. Biotechnology research in India is funded primarily by government agencies such as DBT, CSIR, ICAR and ICMR.

Regulations in India

Development and cultivation of transgenic varieties are raising many environmental concerns. In view of this, transgenic variety in any crop is released once it satisfies all environmental concerns. Before release they will be thoroughly tested for their effect on soil flora and fauna, allergenicity, toxicology etc. In India, Department of Biotechnology in Department of Science and Technology and Ministry of Environment and Forests are responsible for implementing bio-safety regulations with in the country. The regulation of genetically modified organisms (GMOs) in India has been subjected to the rules framed by the Ministry of Environment and Forests (MOEF) in 1989(GOI, 1989). These rules, which were part of the Environmental (Protection) Act of 1986, defined implementing structures for conducting research and for the commercial applications of GMOs. Department of Biotechnology formulated guidelines for conducting research in transgenic plants (GOI, 1990 1994 and 1998).

Govt. of India has evolved regulatory mechanisms for the development and evaluation of Genetically Modified Organisms (GMOs). Various bio-safety committees, starting right from the institute where the research is going on to District and State, are in operation to monitor the safety of GMOs. GM crop regulatory structure in India consists of the following six committees. First three are under the Department of Biotechnology (DBT), next one under the MOEF and the last two operate at sub-federal levels closer to the actual site of GM crop field trials.

Recombinant DNA Advisory Committee (RDAC): Reviews developments in biotechnology at national and international levels and recommends suitable and appropriate safety regulations

Review Committee on Genetic Manipulation (RCGM): Monitors safety-related aspects of ongoing research projects and activities involving genetically engineered organisms.

Institutional Biosafety Committee (IBSC): Constituted by the institution conducting research that handles micro-organisms/genetically-engineered organisms.

The Genetic Engineering Approval Committee (GEAC): Based in MoEF and gives approvals for activities involving large-scale commercial use and release of hazardous micro organisms including imports of GMOs and recombinants

The State Biotechnology Coordination Committee (SBCC): Nodal agency at the State-level to assess damages, if any, from the release of GMOs.

The District Level Biotechnology Committee (DLC): Monitors safety regulations in installations engaged in the use of GMOs and hazardous substances at District level.

Steps in GM plant commercialization process:

In India, a transgenic variety is developed under the close supervision of different regulatory bodies’ right from lab and greenhouse experiments to its approval for commercial production (Table 4). This elaborated exercise helps to assess their possible impact on environment. In case of any adverse impact that particular line will be withdrawn before release. Only lines that don’t have any impact will be considered for release based on their agricultural advantage.

Table 4. GM plant commercialization process

Steps in GM plant commercialization process Data generated at this step(more can be requested if needed)Who approves 1. Lab & greenhouse experiments Rationale for development of GM plant Cloning strategy Characteristics of expression vectors, inserted genes, promoters Transformation/cloning method Genetic analysis of transgene Biochemistry of expressed gene Compositional analysis Description of host plant, geographical distribution in country of origin, Back crossing duration, seed setting characteristics, germination rates, phenotypic characteristics, target gene efficacy tests Observations about implications of toxicity & allergenicityIBSC risk category I & II RCGM risk category III 2. Contained open field trials & generation of biosafety data Germination rates & phenotypic characteristics Studies of gene flow, invasiveness, weed formation Implications of out crossing Susceptibility to diseases & pests Toxicity & allergenicity of plants/fruits/seeds Food/feed safety evaluation in animalsIBSC/RCGM 3. Multi-location trials Agronomic advantageRCGM/GEAC 4. Large-scale field trials Agronomic advantageGEAC 5. Environmental, food & agronomic approval GEAC 6. Variety registration* Agronomic advantageICAR, National and State Seed Quality control agencies 7. Approval for commercial production GEAC

Biotech crops cultivated in India

On 26th March 2002, Genetic Engineering Approval Committee (GEAC) for the first time approved three Bt cotton hybrids (MECH 12 Bt, MECH 162 Bt and MECH 184 Bt) of MAHYCO for commercial cultivation in India. RCH2 Bt hybrids of Rasi seeds were approved on 1st April 2004 in Central and Southern part of India.

Bt-cotton was first planted in India in 2002. Following its success, the area under this crop and the number of farmers who adopted this technology increased significantly from year to year as shown in the Table 5 below:

Table 5: Area under Bt-cotton in India (2002 to 2007) YearTotal cotton area in hectaresBt-cotton area in hectaresBt-cotton area in acres% area occupied by Bt-cottonNo. of Bt-farmers 200287,30,00029,00072,0000.320,000 200376,70,00086,0002,13,0001.175,000 200476,30,0005,53,00013,66,0007.33,50,000 200589,20,00012,67,00031,31,00014.210,00,000 200691,58,00038,00,00094,00,00041.523,00,000 200794,00,00062,00,000*153,20,00066.038,00,000 Source: Thus, in about 6 years, the area under Bt-cotton has increased by more than 210 times to record 6.2 m ha and the number of Bt-farmers by 190 times to reach 3.8 m in 2007. Further, Bt-cotton has occupied 66% of the 9.4 m ha of the total cotton area in India in 2007.

Associated Chambers of Commerce and Industry India (ASSOCHAM) and IMRB International study on Bt cotton in India revealed that cotton farmers have earned an additional income of Rs 7,039 crore in 2006 after a 50 per cent increase in yield due to use of Bt cotton seed. Introduction of two stacked genes into Bollgard II Bt cotton has saved pesticide use to the tune of Rs 1,600 per acre. Bollgard II Bt cotton has the advantage of controlling both bollworms and the sucking pest, Spodoptera, while Bt cotton (with one gene) controls only bollworm. Bollgard II Bt cotton was allowed for commercial cultivation in central and western India in 2006. In view of the increased crop yields of BT cotton, India turned into a net cotton surplus country from a net importer in four years.

Number of pesticides sprays and amounts spent pesticide per acre were reduced when Bt cotton and Bollgard II Bt cotton were cultivated. Additional profit of Rs. 7,757/- and Rs. 10,352/- per acre, respectively, were realized by Bt cotton and Bollgard II Bt cotton over conventional cotton varieties (Table 6).

Table 6. Advantage of Bt cotton over conventional varieties

Cotton varietyNo.of pesticide spraysAmount spent on pesticide per acreProfit /acre* Conventional cotton -Rs. 2,900Rs. 4,784 Bt cotton (with one gene, cry 1 Ac)4.6 times less than conventionalRs. 2,000Rs. 12,541 Bollgard II Bt cotton (with Cry I Ac and Cry 2 Ab genes) 2 times less than Bt cottonRs. 1,300Rs. 15,136

* Bt seeds are 2.5 times costlier than conventional seeds

The results of other five studies conducted by public institutions and published recently are summarized in the table below to exemplify the benefits (Manjunath, 2008). Table 7 : Results of studies carried out by neutral agencies on the performance Of Bt-cotton in India

Publication / ParametersBennett et al., 2006Gandhi & Namboodiri (IIMA), 2006Qaim, 2006ICAR, 2006Ramgopal (Andhra Univ.) 2006 Period studied2002 & 200320042002-0320052005 Yield increase45 – 63%31%34%30.9%46% Reduction in chemical sprays3 to 139%6.8-4.2(50%)-55% Increased profit50%88%69%-110% Average profit / hectare-$250/ha$118/ha-$223/ha The results reveal that a) increase in cotton yield ranged from 30.9 to 63%, b) reduction in chemical sprays was from 39 to 55% and c) increase in profit to farmers ranged from 50 to 110% equivalent to about US$ 250 (Rs.10, 000) per hectare over the non-Bt cotton. It is reported that the average cotton yields in India which was 308kg/ha in 2002, prior to introduction of Bt-cotton, increased to 560kg/ha in 2007 (at least 50% of increase is attributed to Bt technology). Similarly, the national cotton production increased from mere 15.8 million bales in 2002 to 31.0 m bales in 2007. Exports of raw cotton, which was 0.9 m bales in 2005, increased to 4.7 m bales in 2006 and touched 4.8 m bales in 2007. Further, Bt-cotton contributed US$840 million or more to National farm economy. The studies carried out on Bt-cotton both before and after commercialization have clearly shown the following benefits: a) Higher cotton yield owing to effective control of bollworms, b) drastic reduction in the application of chemical insecticides for bollworm control, c) higher profit to farmers and d) conservation of biological control agents and other beneficial organisms. Thus, there have been social and economic benefits and intangible environmental benefits. The ever-increasing demand for Bt-cotton seeds is a clear reflection of farmers’ confidence in this technology and its benefits.


Use of bio-fertilizers, bio-pesticides and transgenic varieties in agriculture are showing increasing trend. Use of these things will reduce the utilization of chemical pesticides and pesticides; there by the harmful effects they produce will be reduced. Further increase in these eco-friendly biotech derived agri-inputs is essential to alleviate the environmental issues raised in conventional agriculture. References: Agriculture today (Jan,2005). The National Agricultural Magazine, Published by New Delhi. Alvares, C. (ed.) (1999) The organic farming source book. Published by The Other India Press/Third World Network, Goa (India). 366 p Bennett, R. et al., 2006. Farm-level economic performance of genetically modified cotton in Maharashtra, India. Review of Agricultural Economics, 28: 59-71. Gandhi, V. and Namboodiri, N.V., 2006. The adoption and economics of Bt-cotton in India: Preliminary results from a study. Indian Institute of Management (IIM), Ahmedabad, India. Working paper No. 2006-09-04, pages 1-27, Sept. 2006. Ghosh, Nilabja 2003. Promoting Bio-fertilizers in Indian Agriculture. Institute of Economic Growth Discussion Paper Series No. 69/2003. Delhi, India. GOI. 1989. Rules for the manufacture, use, import, export and storage of hazardous microorganisms/genetically engineered organisms or cells, issued by the Union Ministry of Environment and Forests, Govt. of India (Notification No. G.S.R. 1037 9E) dated 5 December 1989. GOI. 1990. Recombinant DNA safety guidelines. DBT, Union Ministry of Science and Technology, Govt. of India, p. 90. GOI. 1994. Revised guidelines for safety in biotechnology. DBT, Union Ministry of Science and Technology, Govt. of India. GOI. 1998. Revised guidelines for research in transgenic plants and guidelines for toxicity and allergenicity evaluation of transgenic seeds, plants and plant parts. DBT, Union Ministry of Science and Technology, Govt. of India, p. 92. ICAR (Indian Council of Agricultural Research), 2006. Frontline demonstrations of cotton – 2005-06. Mini Mission II, Technology Mission on cotton. ICAR, New Delhi. James, C. 2007. Global Status of Commercialized Biotech/GM Crops: 2007. ISAAA Briefs No. 37, 225 pp. ISAAA: Ithaca, NY. Manjunath, T. M. (2008) Position Paper on Indian Bt cotton. Bt-Cotton in India: Remarkable Adoption and Benefits. Manjunath, T. M. 2007. Q & A on Bt-Cotton in India. Answers to More than 70 Questions on All Aspects. All India Crop Biotechnology Association, New Delhi, 78 pp. Qaim, M. 2006. Adoption of Bt cotton and impact variability: Insights from India. Review of Agricultural Economics, 28: 59-71. Ramarethinam, S (2006) Conference on Agrochemicals. January 12-13, 2006, Mumbai. Speeches and Presentations-2006: FICCI ( Ramgopal, N., 2006. Economics of Bt-cotton vis–vis traditional cotton varieties – Study in Andhra Pradesh, Agro-Economic Research Centre, Andhra University, Andhra Pradesh.

Auther: K. Sarala, Senior Scientist (Biotechnology), Central Tobacco Research Institute, Rajahmundry-533 105, A.P.

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