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Career as Genetic Engineer

Career as a Genetic Engineer

About Genetic Engineer

Genetic Engineering is one of the emerging fields in India, and the career prospects for the same are increasing. A scientist who changes DNA of living organisms through a laboratory technique is called a Genetic Engineer. A Genetic Engineer is also regarded as a Bio-technologist who plays a crucial role in using Genetic Techniques to manipulate genetic materials with an objective to develop new and improved living organisms. In all, a Genetic Engineer is directly related to the development and sustained survival of living organisms.

In India, the major emphasis is given to research and development in Genetic Engineering, and the person who is aspiring to become a Genetic Engineer will have to attain a higher-level degree, i.e., Ph.D to excel in this career. A Genetic Engineer works in a well-equipped laboratory. They use tools and technologies to examine the DNA structure. Most of their time is spent in research and experiment.

A Genetic Engineer job role has a  huge impact on society. Their work can be used to cure genetic diseases, enhance the crops yield, improve the genetic structure of plants and other species etc.

You can check the detailed career prospects pertaining to Genetic Engineering here such as eligibility, job roles, pay scale etc.

Eligibility to become Genetic Engineer

In order to become a Genetic Engineering, the aspirants must have a relevant degree in the field. Most of the institutes offer M.Tech course in Genetic Engineering while the number of institutes offering B.Tech in the same is limited. Therefore, a candidate must complete a Bachelor’s degree in Science with specialization in Biophysics/ Biochemistry/ Molecular Biology/ Genetics. After attaining the relevant Bachelor’s degree, the candidates can either go for M.Sc in any of the above subjects or M.Tech or Master’s degree in Genetic Engineering. Obtaining an M.Tech degree will not be enough for the position of researcher or scientists. Therefore, a Ph.D in the respective field is mandatory.

Candidates enrolled in Ph.D will get a monthly stipend to finance or manage his/ her own education and personal expenses.  

After acquiring a relevant degree, the candidate must initially get work experience as a supervisor, assistant, intern etc in a relevant field to get exposure to work. Later on, with some years of experience, they can apply for job roles in a specialized area.

Types of Job Roles Genetic Engineer

As Genetic Engineers mostly involved in research, they are often treated as Scientists. Therefore. There aren’t many job roles in the field of Genetic Engineering. A Genetic Engineer works in the laboratory as a Technician, Supervisor, Researcher, Scientist etc. The improvement in job positions depends on experience and skills. Here are some of the roles and responsibilities of Genetic Engineers -

  • Examine DNA structures of organisms using modern tools and technologies
  • Design and Execute Experiments
  • Understand complex genetic structure.
  • Manipulate or modify genes of plants, animals and other species including microorganism
  • Help in the preparation of antibiotics,
  • Handle hereditary diseases by studying the genetic structure of an organism.

Top Recruiting Sectors for Genetic Engineers

The career prospects in this field are spread across different sectors. They can be found working in different sectors which are listed below: -

  • Agriculture
  • Healthcare
  • Research Centres
  • Forensics
  • Pharmaceutical Companies
  • Hospitals
  • Government Agencies

Top Recruiting Companies/ Agencies/ Organizations for Genetic Engineers

Following are some of the organisations that hire a Genetic Engineer in India:

  • Tata Institute for Genetics and Society
  • ICGEB International Centre for Genetic Engineering and Biotechnology
  • Tata Medical Center

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Pay Scale/Salary of Genetic Engineer

The salary of a  Genetic Engineer depends on so many factors like years of experience, skills, employer etc. The average starting salary of a Genetic Engineer in India is expected to be Rs 3.00 Lakhs per Annum. The pay scale increases with years of experience and skills.

The pay scale mentioned here is just indicative and expected to change unconditionally.

Books & Study Material to Become Genetic Engineer

Following are some of the best books related to Genetic Engineering: -

  • Genetic Engineering by P.S Verma P.S, V.K Agarwal V.K
  • An Introduction to Genetic Engineering by Desmond S. T. Nichol
  • Genetic Engineering by Jane K. Setlow
  • Biotechnology and Genetic Engineering by Lisa Yount
  • Genetic Engineering (Oxford Higher Education) by Smita Rastogi, Neelam Pathak

Pros of becoming a Genetic Engineer

  • The research and work carried out by a Genetic Engineer have a positive impact on agriculture as the yields of crops is maximized.
  • A Genetic Engineer plays a major role to prevent genetic diseases in humans.
  • A Genetic Engineer helps in the treatment of novel diseases caused by microorganisms,
  • A Genetic Engineer plays a major role to develop stronger plants, healthier animals, and prevent diseases.

Cons of becoming a Genetic Engineer

  • The  Genetic Engineering technology research and work can cause severe problems to certain groups of people.
  • Sometimes, the research and experiments can lead to the creation of viruses, pathogens that are harmful or risky.
  • The research and experiments must be carried very carefully.
  • There is a risk of negative impact on work. For example, plants and animals with birth defects and mutation can generate.
  • There aren’t many job roles in this field as Genetic Engineers mostly involved in the research.

Paths for Being Genetic Engineer

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