A Dazzling Paragon: Pradipika Vasudevan

A Dazzling Paragon: Pradipika Vasudevan

Manisha Rath | Nov 13, 2017

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It is rightly said that,

Some people dream of success, while others wake up and work hard for it.

Pradipika Vasudevan, a third-year student of the B.Tech curriculum from the Department of Biotechnology and Medical Engineering proved this idiom true. Recently, the Material Research Society of Singapore (MRS-S) organized the 9th International Conference on Materials for Advanced Technology, more commonly known as ICMAT 2017, from 18 June to 23 June at Suntec Singapore. Pradipika Vasudevan was one among the very few Indians who were a part of the conference. In fact, she was the only undergraduate student at the conference, a remarkable achievement.

The Materials Research Society of Singapore (MRS-S) is a non-profit organization created in 1999 to promote material science not only to researchers in Singapore but also to publicize the capabilities of researchers throughout Asia and provide them with a platform to present their work to their peers around the world. The Society is affiliated to the International Union of Materials Research Societies (IUMRS). ICMAT 2017 attracted more than 2,249 scientists, professors, PhD scholars, and M-Tech students around the world who presented their research based on a wide range of themes and topics including, but not limited to Electronic Materials, Functional Materials, Energy & Its Storage, Optical / Photonics etc.

Pradipika Vasudevan made an oral presentation at the conference, making her the youngest presenter at ICMAT 2017. The team of researchers comprised of Pradipika Vasudevan, Sheetal Choudhary, Reeya Chaurasia and Dr. Tejinder Kaur. She was even sanctioned a MRS-S Funding Support of 300 SGD to subsidize the costs associated with attending the conference. Her research focused on Drug-eluting chitosan and tamarind seed polysaccharide hydrogels for diabetic wound healing under the theme “Stimuli-sensitive soft materials and hydrogels” included in “Stimuli-Sensitive and Responsive Polymer Biomaterials” Symposium. Hydrogels are materials that swell when they come into contact with water. Hydrogels have been used extensively in the field of biomaterials and tissue engineering. Their project focused mainly on healing diabetic wounds since these wounds are very common in diabetic patients. Diabetic wounds have complications like slower healing and neuropathy which make them harder to heal. Hence, hydrogels with natural herbal extracts which had anti-diabetic properties were developed and characterized for their wound healing properties. The work also consisted of testing the drug-eluting properties so as to provide a drug delivery system to the wound. The results found were quite promising and established that these hydrogels could be used as potential wound dressing materials for diabetic wounds.

Team MM took a brief interview of Pradipika Vasudevan to know more about her experience.

MM: How was your experience in ICMAT 2017?

Pradipilka Vasudevan(PV): The experience was really good. Singapore is a very nice place, with plenty to experience and see. The conference was a mega event and was attended by three Nobel laureates. It gave me a platform to interact with professors and experienced candidates from around the world. Being the only undergraduate at the conference, it was really overwhelming.

MM: Along with the frenzied class hours, how did you manage to work in the laboratory for research purposes?

PV: I believe that if you are really passionate about something, you will be able to find time for it. In our second year, we learned that Department of Biotechnology and Medical Engineering is mostly related to research activities. As I was always inclined towards research work, I was able to find a balance between research and academics without which, this wouldn’t have been possible. I found Prof A. Thirugnanam’s topic interesting and approached him. I was mentored by a PhD scholar, Dr Tejinder Kaur. We started to work in the month of January and our work came to a close in early June. We used to work in the lab every day, even during the weekends. It was really hectic, but the end result more than made up for that. I would like to thank Prof A. Thirugnanam for his guidance and cooperation in this project. I would also like to thank our mentor Dr Tejinder Kaur for her guidance and support.

MM: What are your future plans?

PV: I would like to go for higher studies and get more involved in more research projects.

MM: Do you have any message for our readers?

If you are really interested in something, strive hard to achieve it. Work for it from the very beginning. Have clarity in your ideas and thoughts.

Team MM congratulates Pradipika Vasudevan for her achievement and also for taking the NITR standards to the next level.

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