AIST concluded a comprehensive Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with DBT, Govt. of India on February 12, 2007. The MoU involved bilateral collaboration on three themes - Bioinformatics, Biomedicine and Glycosciences. Under this agreement, AIST and Indian scientists through DBT collaborated on selected projects at both ends. Four workshops, two at each side, were held for exchange of ideas, information and research results, besides exchange of personnel and to develop closer cooperation and collaboration between the two countries.
Initiation and strengthening of collaboration between AIST and IIT Delhi in research and in organizing educational training programs, even when no MoU existed until June 2015.
In order to promote close and effective collaboration, DBT and AIST set up the joint laboratory DAILAB at the Biomedical Research Institute, AIST, Japan. The Signing and Opening Ceremony of DAILAB@AIST was presided over by AIST President Dr. R. Chubachi and DBT Secretary Prof. K. VijayRaghavan on October 03, 2013 at AIST, Tsukuba.
Inauguration of DAILAB @ IIT Delhi on November 04, 2015. The inauguration was presided over by Prof. K. VijayRaghavan (Secretary, DBT, Govt. of India), Prof. R. Chidambaram (Principal Scientific Advisor to Govt. of India), Dr. N. Yumoto (Fellow, AIST), Dr. Y. Ohmiya (Director, Biomedical Research Institute, AIST), Dr. S.K. Koul (Deputy Director, IIT Delhi) and Prof. S. Tuli (Dean R&D, IIT Delhi)
The Department of Biotechnology of India (DBT) and National Institute of Advanced Industrial Science and Technology (AIST, Japan) have established a new joint research laboratory, named DBT-AIST International Laboratory for Advanced Biomedicine (DAILAB) at AIST Tsukuba and RCB, India. AIST President Dr. Ryoji Chubachi and DBT Secretary Prof. K. VijayRaghavan signed the joint research contract and the opening ceremony was held on October 3, 2013, at AIST Tsukuba.
AIST and DBT have concluded a comprehensive memorandum of understanding on comprehensive research cooperation (MoU) on February 12, 2007. This MoU involved bilateral collaboration on three themes - Bioinformatics, Biomedicine, and Glycoscience. During the last 7 years, AIST and DBT scientists have been performing and collaborating on selected projects at both end. Four workshops, two at each side, were held so far for exchange of ideas, information, and research results to develop closer collaboration between the two institutions.
In order to promote close and effective collaboration, AIST and DBT have set up DAILAB at the Biomedical Research Institute of AIST in AIST Tsukuba. DAILAB conducts basic to applied research on cancer treatment and to improve the quality of life. The collaborative research offers a global vision to both institutions and helps in training many young researchers at both sides. This is the first time that AIST and DBT are hosting an international laboratory in the fields of life sciences and biotechnology. The two institutions have set up a parallel joint laboratory in India too. This has increased the efficacy of research projects and has offered opportunities for personnel exchange. Both institutions are keen to involve industry at a later stage of the projects so that the outcomes can be brought to society in the most effective way.
The collaboration between IIT Delhi and AIST has its origin in the year 2010 and has been highly successful so far. Both IIT Delhi and AIST have been working together for five years now even when no formal MoU existed between both the Institutions. The collaboration has been very active both in research as well as in organizing educational and training programs at both sides. On the research front, various aspects of understanding the anti-cancer activity of key withanolides from Indian Ayurvedic herb Ashwagandha has the topic of the collaboration so far. In one such study, IIT Delhi was involved in the in silico investigation of the interactions of withanone with the homology built structure of mortalin (a novel member of heat shock protein cloned by DAILAB and reported to be involved in carcinogenesis) and found that the withanone could bind to mortalin in a region earlier predicted critical for binding to p53. Molecular dynamic simulations were performed at IIT Delhi, which revealed the thermodynamic and structural stability of the withanone-mortalin complexes. This study was subsequently taken up by AIST to further demonstrate the experimental evidence of abrogation of mortalin-p53 complex by withanone resulting in an activation of p53 in human cancer cells. Similarly, joint publications on the cellular target TPX2-Aurora 2 that acts as substrates of withanone, molecular interactions of Bcl-2 & Bcl-xL with mortalin have demonstrated that these phytochemicals caused down-regulation of migration-promoting proteins hnRNP-K, VEGF and metalloproteases.
The research collaboration between AIST and IIT Delhi was initiated after the interaction during the visit of AIST delegation to IIT Delhi for participating in the 2nd Indo-Japan Symposium on Bioinformatics (Dec 10-11, 2010) and the 4th (DBT) India- (AIST) Japan Workshop on Cell Engineering and Bioinformatics (Dec 13-14, 2010) that was hosted by us. The interaction during this meeting was very fruitful and both our groups started working together on various aspects of Ashwagandha research that has resulted in several international publications. The highlight of this collaboration has been the integration of complementary research expertise available between the two groups. Both the groups have drawn strength from their past accomplishments in the molecular analysis using bioinformatics and biochemical approaches as well as recent developments in molecular sciences. The novel targeted approach to investigate the anticancer and neurodegenerative activities of the metabolites from Ashwagandha, will help to overcome the challenges and roadblocks that prevent us from developing a novel, cheap and natural anticancer drug to serve as an alternative for modern medicine.
The proposal for MoU between IIT Delhi and AIST was approved in March 2015. The agreement of cooperation between both the Institutions was exchanged in the AIST-IITD Introductory Symposium held at AIST, Tsukuba on June 18, 2015. The IIT Delhi delegation that participated in the meeting included Prof. S.K. Koul, Deputy Director (S&P), Prof. Suneet Tuli, Dean (R&D) and Dr. D. Sundar, Associate Professor, DBEB. Subsequently, the proposal for setting up a DAILAB at IIT Delhi was approved by our Institute with the following objectives: (i) provide an opportunity for IITD faculty and AIST scientists to bring complementary expertise and innovative problem solving capabilities (ii) conduct research at a larger scope leveraging the infrastructure/expertise at both the institutions.