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It is the study of genes, heredity and genetic variations in living organisms. The field aims to understand the process and function of trait inheritance, including topics such as gene distribution, gene behavior, and molecular structure of genes. Professionals in the field are involved with the investigation of the genetic causes behind various genetic anomalies, hereditary conditions and genetic variations of living organisms.

Career Opportunities in Genetics

  • Cytogeneticist
    Cytogeneticists or Cytogenetic Technologists prepare and maintain biological samples such as blood, amniotic fluids, bone marrow and tumors for chromosome analysis.
  • Forensic DNA Analyst
    Geneticists get employed by the crime-investigation branches of various government and private organizations. Their work involves the analysis of biological samples to detect the presence or absence of certain DNA.
  • Medical Technologist
    Also referred to as Clinical Laboratory scientists, Medical technologists conduct a number of biological, hematological, chemical, immunologic, bacteriological, and microscopic tests. Additionally, they also work on developing method and tests in their research.
  • Clinical Geneticist
    Clinical Geneticists are physicians who specialize in the treatment and diagnosis of different genetic diseases. They may also engage in various laboratory-based tasks related to these diseases.
  • Genetic Counselor
    A genetic counselors' work involves providing support and information, to create awareness about a variety of genetic diseases. Their duties include managing treatment of people with hereditary disorders, as well as, counseling patients with such inherited problems.
  • Research Geneticist
    Research Geneticists are mainly employed in the research and development departments of various government agencies, private laboratories, and other health-care institutions. Their research is mainly focused towards advancing knowledge and treatment of various inherited characteristics of humans, animals, and plants.
  • Education
    Geneticists can work as full-time or guest lecturers at universities and colleges.

How to Pursue a Career in Genetics

Stream Graduation After Graduation After Post Graduation
Path 1
Clear Class XII with Science Stream with BiologyPursue B.Sc. (Hons) in Genetics or B.Sc. (Hons) Biological Sciences or B.Sc. (Hons) Life Sciences for 3 yearsPursue M.Sc. Genetics or M.Sc. Bio-sciences for 2 yearsPursue Ph.D for 3-5 years.
Path 2
Clear Class XII with Science StreamPursue B.Tech. Genetic Engineering for 4 yearsPursue M.Tech. Genetic Engineering for 2 yearsPursue Ph.D for 3-5 years.

Important Facts

  • Some colleges/Universities have admissions in B.Sc.(Hons)/B.Tech in Genetics Engineering following their own entrance test or considers the marks in the qualifying exam.

Leading Institutes

Top Genetics Institutes in India
College Location Website
Indian Institute of Science Education and Research Multiple Locations
The Oxford College of Science Bangalore
Guru Nanak Dev University Amritsar
Bangalore City College Bangalore
Institute of Genetic Engineering Kolkata
Kurukshetra University Kurukshetra
University of Calicut Calicut
Garden City College Bangalore
MS Ramaiah College of Arts Science and Commerce Bangalore
Indian Academy Degree College Bangalore
SRM University Ramapuram
Karnatak University Dharwad
University of Madras Chennai
University of Delhi, South campus Delhi
Vellore Institute of Technology Vellore
Andhra University Visakhapatnam
Banaras Hindu University Varanasi
Punjab Agricultural University Ludhiana
Top Genetics Institutes in the World
Institution Location Website
University of Oxford United Kingdom
University of California, Berkeley United States
Columbia University United States
University of California, Los Angeles United States
University of Pennsylvania United States
University College London United Kingdom
University of California, San Diego United States
Duke University United States
Imperial College London United Kingdom
Australian National University Australia
University of York United Kingdom
University of Toronto Canada
Massey University New Zealand
The University of Queensland Australia
John Hopkins University United States

Important Entrance Exams

College Tentative Date Important Elements Website
SRMJEE April Physics, Chemistry, Biology
KVPY November Aptitude test- Physics, Chemistry, Maths, Biology, Interview
JEE Main (Paper 1) May Physics, Chemistry, Maths
JEE Advanced May Physics, Chemistry, Maths
NEET- National Eligibility Cum Entrance Test May -June Physics, Chemistry, Biology

Work Description

  • Detecting genotypes and employing diagnostic procedures to detect genetic disorders
  • Explaining the results of tests performed by genetic technologists
  • Keeping records of genetic ailments and the clinical relevance of both, inherited or acquired genetic disorders
  • Handling enquiries of clinical staff /healthcare professionals
  • Supervising and training interns, colleagues and healthcare professionals
  • Assuring the quality and authenticity of the data developed
  • Employing laboratory techniques such as Polymerase Chain Reaction (PCR) or Mutation Detection Techniques
  • Employing linkage analysis to detect the faulty/misfired genes which cause specific disorders
  • Preparing reports for clinicians and clients (patients)
  • Keeping up to date with the new developments and research work

Pros & Cons of a Career in Genetics

  • Professionals get the opportunities to work on, and lead advanced research projects.
  • The field is rapidly growing, and there are a number of research opportunities, both in India and overseas.
  • Jobs are available in various industries, such as pharmaceuticals, manufacturing, health-care, etc.
  • The educational path for the career is long, as a Ph.D is generally preferred.
  • It involves spending most of the time indoors, in the laboratory.
  • It can be hard to get into the career, as it requires extensive knowledge, skill and traning.
  • The work may expose individuals to harmful and toxic substances.
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