FUTA BIOTECH GROUP HOLDS SYMPOSIUM
The Federal University of Technology, Akure FUTA, Group on Biotechnology Issues (FUGBI) has organized a one day symposium on modern Biotechnology with the theme “Modern Biotechnology and the Society” at the hilltop auditorium of the University on the 28th of May, 2019. Delivering the lecture, former Director General of National Biotechnology Development Agency (NABDA), Professor Bamidele Solomon defined Biotechnology as the art of utilizing organisms and their products for the production of food, drink, medicine or other benefits to humans and other animal species. He said it has great potential to influence and benefit agriculture, and the genetic improvement of plants and animals as a field of research that has seen immense advances in recent years. He stated that there are two types of Biotechnology which are molecular bio-tech and traditional bio-tech. He said the modern Biotech consists of genetic engineering, Recombinant D.N.A, Transgenic plant and animals while the traditional Biotechnology include fermentation procedures leading to the production of wine, yogurt, cheese and unleavened bread.
According to Professor Bamidele, with the aid of Biotechnology nutrients can be added to food and enriched far beyond its original state. He said in 40 years of Biotechnology research, there is no documented evidence of damage to the human organism, stressing that it has a lower environmental impact than traditional method due to the reduction of carbon emissions through direct scaling. Professor Bamidele said the medicinal and health advantages of Biotechnology cannot be over emphasized.
The lecturer said the purpose of biotechnology applies to agricultural processes such as producing pest-resistant crops, disease resistant animals and environmentally-friendly development. He stated that Biotechnology also known as Bioinformatics is a mix of biological processes and computing that plays a key role in biological data.
Speaking earlier the Commissioner for Health, Ondo State, Mr. Wahab Adegbenro said Biotech is very useful in the medical practice. He commended the organisers and urged FUTA to initiate some form of collaboration with the state government to foster in-depth research work to enhance the discoveries of medicines that will be of use to mankind.
Declaring the symposium open the adviser of FUGBI, Professor Oyedapo Fagbenro said Biotechnology is defined as ability to optimize living organisms, and the enablement to improve on Agricultural produce. Professor Fagbenro said biotechnology can be harnessed for the improvement of the economy of a nation.
In his remark at the occasion, the Vice-Chancellor, Professor Joseph Fuwape, represented by the Deputy Vice-Chancellor, Academic (DVCA) Professor Rufus Ogunsemi, said biotechnology is needed at this particular time to address various challenges facing the country. He stated that Biotechnology is the way to go, saying it can solve the problem of hunger, unemployment and poverty. He expressed expectations that the outcome of the symposium will contribute to the development of Nigeria.
The chairman of FUGBI, Professor Josiah Oladele thanked the Management and expressed optimism that FUGBI in the nearest future will make FUTA proud in the area of invention and discoveries through research work in Biotech. Students from Oyemekun Grammar School, Christ Redeemer International School, Akure, and Complete Child Development Centre, Akure were in attendance at the occasion.