Biotechnology/Statement of purpose-1


                                            At this significant phase of my life, I need to make perhaps the most crucial decision, which will silhouette the future path of my education. Analyzing my motives, credentials and abilities, I have decided to pursue a graduate education in the field of Bioengineering.   


The fields of Chemistry and Biology have always fascinated me. My captivation towards Chemistry is primarily due to the lectures given by my professor Mr.Jainudeen in high school. His teaching made me realize the depth and vastness of the subject, which made me to appreciate Chemistry rather than just understanding it. I was introduced to fair degree of Physiology and Genetics in my high school. I always thought Biology to be a field of application, where concepts from fields like Chemistry and Engineering can be used. To expatiate, any analysis of complex biosystem at molecular level concentrates on the structure of folded proteins and on the binding geometry of molecular complex, which is done by understanding the roles of salt bridges, hydrogen bonds, rotameric states and solvation. My passion towards Chemistry was the driving force behind my pursuing a baccalaureate degree in Chemical Engineering.


During my under graduation, I came in contact with the various aspects of the field, like Transport Phenomena, Biochemical Engineering, Reaction Engineering, Process Control, Equipment designing. These subjects portrayed the vastness and richness of Chemical Engineering and left a fossil like impression on my mind. Clear understanding and exhaustive reading made me delve deep in to the above-mentioned fields. I am thankful to my professor Mr.A.K.Mohanasundaram, whose lectures helped me to develop an in-depth knowledge in Heat and Mass Transfer. My familiarity in both theoretical and experimental aspects helped me get consistently good scores throughout my under graduation [refer transcripts]. Comprehensive reading of several books and journals helped me to obtain a high proficiency level and exhorted me to perform original works in the fields of Transport Phenomena and Fluid Dynamics. Both these fields have a wide application in Biology. Transport Phenomena helps us to understand the normal and pathophysiological processes occurring in the body and their implications for the prevention, diagnosis and treatment of the human disease. It also assists in examining the Mass Transfer in body tissues and to develop models to predict transport hindrance in porous materials.


To develop my research skills, I decided to work on Transport Phenomena problems. My guide Dr.R.Muthucumaraswamy helped me in bringing out my first publication [refer publication packet]. It is a Stokes problem extended to a vertical plate. The uniqueness of the problem is that it involves multi phenomena namely, Heat Transfer, Mass Transfer, Momentum Transfer and Chemical Reaction. I then worked on another Stokes’ problem studying the effect of magneto hydro dynamics on an infinite vertical plate [refer resume]. I am currently working on another three publications on the same field [refer resume]. Working on these publications has been an enriching experience in my learning curve. It has taught me to handle the demanding nature of work in research. It has also helped me to inculcate traits, which enabled me to work effectively in a group. 


Plasma Spraying is one of the current hot topics in Fluid Dynamics. My guide Dr.S.Meena helped in coining the problem. We are trying to develop an analytical expression for the velocity of the particle, which happens to be the limiting factor for the particle to attain molten state [refer resume]. This problem demands a thorough knowledge in Fluid Dynamics, Numerical Mathematics and Coding. To enhance my Numerical Analysis abilities, I have been studying Computational Fluid Dynamics (CFD), which is the backbone of today’s research in flow problems. I got the insight into CFD by reading Computational Fluid Dynamics by John D. Anderson, JR. Computational Fluid Dynamics facilitates in modeling of flow of rbc and neutrophils through the lung and in the study of airway wall mechanism and in stress induced remodeling. It also explains the cardio vascular flows in the heart and helps in analyzing normal and pathological arterial wall, hearts assist; flow induced by compression and external cardiac assist. Plasma spraying problem helped me to figure out the necessity to possess skills in computer coding in order to be a successful researcher. In order to develop my coding skills, I joined the National Institute of Information Technology (NIIT). I obtained a diploma with top grade covering languages, RDBMS and network administration. I also managed to clear two Microsoft certifications [refer resume] to become Microsoft Certified Solution Developer (MCSD). I am currently in line to become Microsoft Certified System Engineer (MCSE).


Biochemical Engineering was introduced to me in my seventh semester. Reading about Enzyme Catalysis, Metabolic Pathways and Cell and Tissue culture, made me realize the association of Chemical Engineers and Biotechnologists. I am currently undergoing a project on pathway analysis which requires the knowledge of Enzyme Catalysis, Vector Spaces, Convex Analysis and Molecular Biology. In order to improve my awareness on Molecular Biology, I read through Genes 7 by Benjamin Lewin. This book has given me a deep insight in to the correlated patterns of gene expression and their relation to biochemical regulatory networks and in signal transduction pathways in cells.


Bioengineering brings diverse fields like Physiology, Chemistry, Transport Phenomena, Molecular Biology and Computation and Simulation under single roof. To exemplify, there was a recent discovery that NO is synthesized in our body and is the key intercellular messenger molecule. Toxicity of NO helps in killing of invading microorganisms. However sustained high levels of NO damage the host tissue and cause mutational changes that may lead to cancer. So to provide insight into the biological effects of NO, its reaction kinetics and diffusion in aqueous solution has been studied. Using such ideas, a computational model was developed to predict the consequences of NO synthesis by cells in vivo and in vitro. Biological and Physiological Transport Phenomena, Genetic Toxicology, Metabolic pathway analysis and Biochemical Engineering have been my areas of interest. All these fields have an enormous potential for research and application in industry. To match my research interest, I have decided to pursue my graduate studies in Bioengineering.


It is well known that University of Utah is ranked among the top schools in the field of Bioengineering. After browsing through the university website, I found that research interest of the faculty members matches closely with my aspiration. I was impressed by the innovative research supported by your university. Considering the eminent faculty, facilities and opportunities offered by your university, I am convinced that your university is the right place for me to do my PhD. I look forward for a most promising and rewarding future in PhD study at your university.

 As Somerset Maugham observed, “Man is not the climax of creation, He is just a reaction to the environment.” I as the reactant am in search of the environment and I do not see a more complete environment than yours.

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