In this initiative, we have scope to exchange ideas between scientists, engineers and life science domain experts in the form of team meetings, visit to research lab.s and conduct of joint workshop. A workshop on Signals and Systems for Life Science was held on 17th November, 2013 at Swissotel, Kolkata. This by-invitation workshop was attended by forty experts from life science domain, mostly from medical fraternity and forty researchers from IIT Kharagpur working in this area. Prof. Sunanda DasGupta, Dean, Sponsored Research & Industrial Consultancy, IIT Kharagpur welcomed the participants. Prof. Partha P. Chakrabarti, Director, IIT Kharagpur emphasized on how such an initiative would not only advance our understanding in this crucial area but would also result in development of better tools and techniques for the use of the Doctors and health care industry in particular, and better healthcare for the people of the country in general. He outlined the roadmap of IIT Kharagpur and its effort to start a centre of excellence by bringing experts from Life Science, Engineering and Basic Science on one platform. A consolidated presentation from IIT Kharagpur side followed. This had two segments. In one, a snapshot of variety of life science domain research problems pursued at IIT Kharagpur was presented. Most of these have collaborations from India and abroad. The second segment of the presentation gave an overview of some of the research laboratories at IIT Kharagpur devoted to this area.
Dr. Manas K. Mandal, Outstanding Scientist, Director General – Life Sciences, DRDO and Chief Guest explained in detail the telling need of armed forces and the great expectation he has from doctors, scientists, engineers who came together to advance the research activities in this field. Besides spelling out a number of research problems where he is looking for solutions, he observed that DRDO research is more of purpose driven than passion driven.
Dr. Mammen Chandy, Director, Tata Medical Centre, Kolkata was the first speaker of next session. He presented resources available at his institute, the scope of collaboration and some of the research problems which could get started almost immediately. He emphasized on people to people connect besides institute level collaboration. Dr. Asim K. Bardhan, renowned cardiologist and Medical Director, IIT Kharagpur spoke next. He discussed the scope in cardiovascular research in detail and acknowledged that this was the first time when he was speaking before engineering faculty and doctors together. Dr. Bardhan outlined the activities of super-specialty hospital and medical school that are to come up at IIT Kharagpur. Prof. Sujay K. Guha, a prolific inventor and a well-known face from IIT Kharagpur for his immense contribution in male-contraceptive, artificial-heart related research, spoke about the need and scope around research that leads to personalized medicine. Dr. Debasis Chakravarty, renowned orthopedic who practiced extensively in India and abroad and currently attached to Fortis Hospital, Kolkata spoke about research issues in bio-mechanics, knee and hip replacement. Dr. Partha Sarathi Bhattacharya who is leading the activity of Institute of Pulmocare and Research spoke about research issues in pulmonology. He shared his experience in collaborating with IIT Kharagpur.
Each of the participants spoke about their research interest and expectation from IIT Kharagpur in turn. In the final session, IIT Kharagpur research faculty and life science domain experts sat together and discussed research problems of mutual interest. The follow-up of this exercise resulted in submission of forty-three expression of interest to collaboratively pursue important research problems. The workshop concluded with a resolve to work together in this area, with necessary support from funding agencies who would be approached in due course.