Orissa's Utkal University in Bhubaneswar has been chosen as one of the four regional study co-ordination centres to explore hitherto unknown plants and microorganisms of India. Its research will focus on freshwater algae -- both still water and running water -- in different climatic zones. The exercise is part of an 'All India Coordinated Project on Taxonomy', initiated by the Union ministry of environment and forests (moef). The three other centres are based at the universities of Lucknow, south Gujarat and Mysore.
The Utkal varsity team is headed by S P Adhikary. "Our group aims to deepen the understanding of algae, which have an important role to play in any marine ecosystem," reveals Adhikary and adds: "Algae produce many valuable biochemicals and are a potential source of microbes for use in biotechnology."
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