Coordinator: Dr. Anuttama Kulkarni
I) Proposed research: Hydra, a diploblastic cnidarians with simple nerve net organizes complex behavioral responses to food and light. How does it orchestrate such intricate responses with apparent lack of organizational complexity of higher organisms is still a mystery. My proposed research is divided in two broad objectives. 1) Understanding locations of various neurotransmitters in Hydra 2) Monitoring cellular, molecular and behavioral changes in body of Hydra upon Drug exposure. The project upon completion would validate Hydra as an in vitro like system to assay neurotoxicity.
II) Relevance to Biology Education: Biology is about Life, and hence biology research/studies usually involve experimentation with an animal model system. There are ethical, financial, and human power issues involved in including hands-on animal model research in undergraduate courses. Experimentation at school biology level suffers even more. There have been efforts for popularizing water polyp-Hydra as a model system for biology education in past, both, in India and around the world. On similar lines, I would like to design and execute experiments on Hydra. I will discuss possible areas of Biology, like Molecular biology, ethology, developmental biology, ecology where Hydra can be used as a model and the kind of experiments that can be done. Answering a scientific query is a challenging task. It requires consistent efforts, different tools and techniques, and most importantly, analytical and critical thinking skills. We hope that the project work will familiarize participant students and teachers to the process of scientific inquiry.
About the speaker: Anuttama Kulkarni has a M.Sc. (Life Science Neuroscience) from Sophia College for Women, University of Mumbai and a Ph.D. from University of Mumbai. She is presently working as a visiting fellow at HBCSE. Recently she has received a DST-INSPIRE Fellowship Award.
Coordinator: Prof. Jyotsna Vijapurkar
Prof. Vijay Singh
The megapolis of Mumbai (erstwhile Bombay) is a meeting pot amalgamating a large number of cultures; it is a commercial and entertainment epicenter; here grist and grime share space with shining structures. A typical Mumbaikar uses the municipal (BMC) water, commutes to work in an overcrowded local train or the public (BEST) bus and seeks relief in the evening by visiting the seashore, etc. While such everyday occurrences have at times inspired writers and poets, one would hardly suspect that they would catch the eye of a discerning physicist. We discuss in this presentation the (simple) physics of everyday occurrences in “Aamchi Mumbai”.
Prof. Vijay A. Singh completed his doctoral degree from the State University of New York, Albany in 1978. He was a Professor of Physics at IIT - Kanpur for over twenty years (1984 - 2004) and later at the Homi Bhabha Centre for Science Education which (2005-2015) where he was the National Coordinator, Science Olympiads and the National Initiative on Undergraduate Science (NIUS). He was also Adjunct Professor, Centre for Excellence in Basic Sciences, Mumbai University and at IIT Bombay. He is Fellow of the National Academy of Sciences and is currently at the Centre for Excellence in Basic Sciences located at Mumbai University as well as the Vice President of the Indian Association of Physics Teachers (IAPT). Prof. Singh has worked at several places abroad and has been a visiting faculty at universities in the USA. He has over 150 peer -reviewed interna-tional scientic publications, several with undergraduate students who were part of NIUS. He was a co-author of the NCERT Physics Textbooks for Higher Secondary School Physics. He was also the chief editor of the Bulletin of the Indian Association of Physics Teachers. One of his hobbies is to solve and design problems at school and undergraduate level physics.
(www.hbcse.tifr.res.in/people/academic/vijay-singh and firstname.lastname@example.org)
Coordinator: Dr. P. K. Joshi