How to Do Research in Biotechnology?

Conducting biotechnology research is not only exciting but also essential for advancing scientific knowledge and developing practical applications. Biotechnology has transformed how we approach challenges in healthcare, agriculture, environmental conservation, and more. It’s a dynamic and rapidly evolving sector that offers numerous opportunities for individuals passionate about harnessing the power of biology and technology to drive innovation. If you are interested in biotechnology and want a career in it, this blog will definitely help you.

In this blog, we will discuss:

  • What is Biotechnology?
  • Why is biotechnology research necessary?
  • Path to follow
  • Future Opportunities

What is Biotechnology?

Biotechnology is a multidisciplinary field of science that harnesses the principles of biology and technology to develop innovative products and technologies for various industries. It involves the manipulation of living organisms, biological systems, and biological molecules to create valuable products, processes, and applications. Imagine it as the remarkable fusion of biology and tech, like biology’s high-tech version. In this field, scientists mix the power of living things with the magic of machines and computers to create some fantastic stuff.

Biotechnology stands out among other biological fields in several notable ways. First and foremost, it is inherently interdisciplinary, drawing knowledge and techniques from various fields, including biology, chemistry, physics, engineering, and computer science. This multidisciplinary nature allows biotechnologists to tackle complex problems by combining insights and tools from various scientific disciplines. While pure biology primarily seeks to understand biological processes and systems, biotechnology takes things further. It strives to leverage biological knowledge to develop practical products, processes, and technologies that benefit society. Biotechnology concerns real-world applications, whether creating genetically modified organisms with specific traits or engineering microorganisms to produce valuable compounds.

So, biotechnology is an exciting field that allows you to apply your knowledge from other disciplines to conduct excellent research. A bachelor’s degree in biology or biochemistry is required to get in on the action. It also requires you to be an expert in math and chemistry. Biotechnology is on the rise, with new discoveries and inventions being made all the time. So, if you like science and want to make a difference, this is the field for you!

Why is biotechnology research necessary?

Biotechnology often involves genetic manipulation to modify the genetic material of organisms such as bacteria, plants, and animals. This can produce genetically modified organisms (GMOs) with desirable traits, such as disease resistance or increased crop yield.

Biotechnology utilizes biological processes like fermentation to produce valuable products like antibiotics, enzymes, and biofuels. These processes leverage the metabolic activities of microorganisms or cells to convert raw materials into desired substances.

In the field of healthcare, biotechnology plays a crucial role in drug development, gene therapy, tissue engineering, and diagnostics. It has led to the creation of life-saving medications, the development of vaccines, and advancements in personalized medicine. The Covid-19 pandemic demonstrated the importance of biotechnology.

Biotechnology is employed in environmental conservation and remediation efforts. Bioremediation, for example, uses microorganisms to degrade pollutants and clean up contaminated sites. Additionally, biotechnology contributes to developing sustainable agricultural practices and wastewater treatment.

Path to Follow

The core biotechnology field is hardcore research-based, very practical-oriented, and demands extensive hands-on training. Don’t assume a bachelor’s degree in biotechnology will make you a Laboratory Scientist. A higher degree (a master’s and a PhD) is mandatory if you want to continue in the core biotechnology field. A lot of dedication and perseverance is expected from you. Here is a point-by-point discussion of the path you can follow to do biotechnology research:

  • Undergraduate level

Biology is fundamental. Considering you are interested in biotechnology, you are assumed to have a biology background. Along with it, you should be good at chemistry because chemistry is extensively used in biology and biotechnology. Try to get into a college that offers a BTech in Biotechnology or biochemical engineering. Some IITs, like IIT-Delhi or Madras, offer such courses. You need to clear JEE-Advanced to pursue them. These courses are four years long and can be extended to five years for an integrated master’s degree. Other colleges like National Institute of Technology (NITs), Birla Institute of Technology and Science (BITS) and Vellore Institute of Technology (VIT) also offer BTech courses in Biotechnology.

You can also opt for Bachelor of Science (BSc) courses offered by reputed universities like Delhi University (DU), Banaras Hindu University (BHU), etc. These courses are of three years duration. After completing undergraduate studies, look for prestigious institutes (like IITs, AIIMS, IISc) to finish postgraduate studies. You can also aim to go to foreign universities. 

  • Postgraduate level

For post-graduation, you need to qualify a few examinations like GATE, CSIR and others. Among them, GATE is accepted everywhere in India. You can also look for foreign universities like University of Bristol, University of Leeds, Michigan State University, Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Stanford University, Yale University, etc. Many other universities also provide world-class research facilities in biotechnology. Studying Biotechnology abroad can widen your chances of landing an enviable job or research project in India or abroad. 

You must also ace English efficiency tests like TOEFL or IELTS to get accepted at foreign universities. If you want to know more about how to get into a foreign university like Stanford, check out this blog.

  • Experience and exposure

Try doing some summer internships during graduation to gain more experience and exposure. You can request any professor of your choice or apply through internship programs. You can also ask some research companies in this field for internship opportunities where you can also expect a stipend. Pharma companies usually hire interns on a regular basis. If you want to know how to apply for internships, check out this blog

  • Co-curricular

Biotechnology has many subfields within it. Try to research on your own by reading literature, reviewing research papers, attending seminars, and participating in various competitions organised by companies and governments to solve food and agricultural problems. This will help you identify your research area. 

Invest time in developing related skills like coding, data analysis, or business management, depending on your field of interest. 

Future Opportunities

An undergraduate degree in Biotechnology provides a firm basis for pursuing a career in any aspect of science involving biotechnology. This could involve the food, pharmaceutical or environmental sectors, molecular biology, genetics, biochemistry, nanobiotechnology, use of microbes, DNA vaccines, production of new materials using new ideas, new drug-delivery systems, organ transplantation, rational drug design, nutraceuticals, plant-based drugs, enzyme engineering and technology, stem cell techniques, and tissue culture. However, the scope will be limited if you seek career options just after BSc/BTech. A few colleges conduct campus placements where major pharmaceutical companies hire students, such as Cipla, Lupin, Dr. Reddy’s Labs. But the competition is tough. The best thing to do would be to get a master’s degree in the subject. You can also opt for an MBA in Biotechnology. You can pair your bachelor’s degree with a management degree for roles such as Clinical Research Coordinator. With experience in the relevant fields, you will be eligible for roles like Biosafety Scientist, BioProcessing Scientist, Laboratory Research Scientist and Senior Scientist. Biopharmaceutical Specialist, Laboratory Manager, Plant Biotechnologists, Biomedical Engineer, and Clinical Research Coordinator are some roles to which you can apply with a master’s degree in biotechnology. 

With a PhD, you will be able to work in the research and development field as an R&D Scientist or choose to be a college professor. Your qualifications and experience will also make you eligible for senior-level roles at research and development companies like the Defense Research and Development Organisation (DRDO). If you want to know more about DRDO, check out this blog.

But despite having these qualifications, you might not get a high-paying job initially. Your experience level will determine the salary you receive. Initially, you can expect around Rs. 20,000 to Rs. 25,000. The work conditions are better in foreign countries like US, UK or Australia, where you can get better offers depending on the companies and your qualifications. You might not struggle much for funds for your projects, like in India.


In the end, biotechnology research is all about curiosity and innovation. It’s like a big, shared adventure that brings people closer, breaks down barriers, and makes the world a better place for everyone. If you are serious about research, you should be ready to accept all the challenges that come your way. If you are confused about what to look for when choosing your dream college, check out this blog.

About us 

At SciAstra, we guide students who want to become scientists and pursue research by helping them secure admissions in the top colleges for the same like IISER, NISER, CEBS, ICAR, CMI, etc.

Our mentors are from the top research institutes like IISERNISERIACSCMIISIIISC Bangalore, and so on. If you are looking to prepare for IAT / NEST 2024, you can check out our courses and get access to live classes, recorded lectures, study material, mock tests, doubt-clearing classes, and much more!

To know more about us, click here OR download the SciAstra App from Play Store!

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *