The Department of Animal Biotechnology was started at the Madras Veterinary College in 1989. In the year 1999, the Indian Council of Agricultural Research (ICAR) recognized the department as a "Centre of Excellence in Veterinary Biotechnology and Immunology". This Department is the first Animal Biotechnology Department in this country that was awarded the ISO 2001:9000 for Quality Management Systems through the British Standards Institute, UK. Recently, it has been awarded consecutively for the second term in Niche Area Scheme of Excellence in avian biotechnology to conduct research on "Improved and expanded vaccines and Immunological understanding of avian viruses" till date.

The Department of Animal Biotechnology is housed in two blocks of three floors each with 'state-of-the-art' facilities to carry out research in various facets of Biotechnology such as Molecular Diagnostics, Cell culture and Hybridoma, Immunotechnology, Animal Genomics and Embryo biotechnology. The Central Embryo Biotechnology lab is located at the University campus in Madhavaram.

Education and Research

The department offers

  • under-graduate courses in Animal Biotechnology, Diagnostic study circle and Tracking course on Regenerative Medicine for B.V.Sc & A.H students and Biotechnological approaches in food Processing course for B.Tech., Food Technology students.
  • a 2-year Master's degree programme (M.V.Sc) in Animal Biotechnology since 1993. This programme consists of four semesters including two semesters of course work and two semesters of research/thesis work.
  • a Ph. D. degree programme in Animal Biotechnology since 1996 which consists of one semester of course work and 50 credits of research work registered over 3-5 years.
  • In addition, a M. Phil degree programme has been started from 2004 to foster interaction with pure science post-graduates who are eligible for this programme, which consists of two semesters, one of course work and one of dissertation and viva voce. The students who have completed Ph.D., M.V.Sc and M.Phil degree programmes in Animal Biotechnology are well placed in various institutions of repute.

Ongoing Research Schemes

Title Budget Funding Agency Duration
"Toll like receptors in farm animals – Evolutionary lineages and application in disease resistance". (PI- Dr. G. Dhinakarraj)
Rs. 143.02 lakhs
"Development of user-friendly discriminatory diagnostics and new generation vaccines for classical swine fever". (PI - Dr. K. Kumanan)
Rs. 163.83 lakhs

DBT, New Delhi
"Manipulation of Rumen ecosystem through modified rumen microbes encoding novel fibrolytic enzymes using nucleic acid based technologies for the improved utilization of crop residues". (PI - Dr. K. Vijayarani)
Rs.64.74 lakhs

"Toll like receptors in phylogenetically divergent fish species their contribution in modulating the innate immunity". (PI- Dr. G. Dhinakarraj)
Rs. 90.67 lakhs

UK-India partnership on "Marek's disease and RNA interference to control avian viral disease". (PI - Dr. K. Kumanan)

"Isolation and characterization of animal adenoviruses for development of a novel viral for vaccine delivery". (PI - Dr. K. Kumanan)
Rs. 14.49 lakhs
DBT, New Delhi
DST scheme on "Establishing National Hub for Healthcare Instrumentation Development". (PI- Dr. G. Dhinakarraj, Dr.A.Raja)
Rs. 70.82 lakhs
"Control of Newcastle disease using siRNA mediated inhibition of viral replication in vivo". (PI – Dr.T.M.A.Senthil Kumar)
Rs. 44.34 lakhs
DBT, New Delhi
"Regulation of follicular dynamics crossbred cows for augmenting fertility and superstimulation". (PI – Dr.S.Sathesh Kumar)
Rs. 46.56 lakhs
DBT, New Delhi
"Improved and expanded vaccines and Immunological Understanding of avian viruses". (PI - Dr. K. Kumanan)
Rs. 250.91 lakhs
"Development of a Flow-through based Somatic Cell Counter for early detection of mastitis in bovines". (PI – Dr.K.G.Tirumurugaan)
Rs. 29.17 lakhs
TATA-Innovation fellowship scheme. (PI- Dr. G. Dhinakarraj)
Rs. 22.40 lakhs
DBT, New Delhi

Salient Achievements

Patent granted

  • A test strip qualitative detection of antibodies to Peste des petits ruminants virus (PPRV) (patent No.243290; Date of grant- 4.10.2010) (Inventor : Dr.G.Dhinakar Raj)

Commercialization of technologies

  • PPRV Blocking ELISA kit to Indian Immunologicals Ltd., Hyderabad(2001)
  • Nine teaching and immunology kits to M/s Medox Biotech Pvt Ltd., Chennai(2004)
  • Leptospira latex agglutination kit to M/s Fort Pharma, Chennai(2004)
  • PPRV truncated recombinant nucleoprotein antigen clone to M/s Indian Immunologicals Ltd., Hyderabad(2009)
  • LipL41 recombinant antigen clone to M/s Indian Immunologicals Ltd., Hyderabad(2009)

Technologies developed for commercialization

  • Antibacterial, antineoplastic pigment from S. marcescens
  • Follicular wave synchronization for augmenting fertility in dairy cattle.

Diagnostic Kits Developed

  • Peste des petits ruminants virus (PPRV) antigen detection kit based on flow-through technology using mono specific area against recombinant nucleoprotein.
  • PPRV antibody detection kit based on lateral-flow technology using recombinant nucleoprotein.
  • CDV-Check-Canine distemper virus (CDV) antibody detection kit based on indirect ELISA using recombinant truncated cross reactive PPRV nucleoprotein.
  • Chicken anaemia virus (CAV) and Rabies antibody detection kits based on latex agglutination assay using recombinant VP1 and G antigens respectively.
  • Emu Sexing Kit
  • ABT choice – Antibiotic sensitivity detection kit using magnetic nano particles.

Vaccines Developed

  • Nanoparticle Biomarker coupled Newcastle disease virus (NDV) vaccine.
  • Live cell culture adapted PPR vaccine from a goat strain.
  • Inactivated cell culture-adapted Newcastle disease vaccine.
  • TANUVAS Infectious bronchitis vaccine for poultry.

Other achievements

  • Sequencing the whole genome of five local isolates of NDV (HQ011508, FJ986192, GUJ187941, HQ902590, HM357251)
  • Expression profiling and ligand- induced cytokine profiles of toll-like receptors (TLRs) in Toda buffaloes and local breeds of goats
  • Ratite sexing methods by PCR and Real time PCR
  • Elucidating the role of interferon alpha in the species-specific resistance of PPR
  • Signalling lymphocyte activation molecule(SLAM) is a coreceptor for PPRV
  • Expressed sequence tags of buffalo genome (335), Eimeria (283) and sharks (2051)
  • Molecular epidemiology of NDV,IBV,PPR,CAV, Marek's disease and infectious bursal disease viruses.

Training programmes

  • The following training programmes are being offered:

Human Resource Development Training Programmes

Level of HRD training Details of the training
Level I
Hands of training for 5 days in specified areas Animal Biotechnology
Level II
Demonstration training for 29 days with emphasis on Animal Cell Culture, Molecular Biology, Immunology and Embryo Biotechnology
Level III
Research Project for 3 months in a specific area of Biotechnology.

In vitro Fertilization Training

  • The training provides hands on experience with live specimens for Veterinarians, Medical Professionals and Embryo biologists involved in assisted reproduction technologies. The training is given twice in a year.

Biotechnological Unit (BSU) services Offered

Biotechnological Services Cost per sample (exclusive of GST)
Diagnosis by PCR 750/-
Diagnosis by reverse transcriptase PCR
Gel documentation AGE & SDS - PAGE
Supply of a cell line flask
Agrose Gel electrophoresis
Flow Cytometric Analysis
Nucleic acid and protein quantification
Usage of cell culture facility (Cytotoxic experiments)
Raman imaging atomic force microscope
Zeta potential
Particle size analyzer 500/-
Rabies antibody detection in serum from animals by FAVN 2000/-
Rabies antigen detection by DFAT 65/-


  1. Dr. M.Parthiban, Professor and Head
  2. Dr. S.Meignanalakshmi, Professor
  3. Dr. K.Brindha, Associate Professor
  4. Dr. S.Parthiban, Assistant Professor
  5. Dr. P.Raja, Assistant Professor