Graduate Institute of Biotechnology was previously established as Graduate Institute of Biotechnology in 2001. Undergraduate student of Department of Life Science was began to recruit in 2004. Department of Biological Science & Biotechnology was started in 2011 by merging the Master and Undergraduate program of these two units. Currently, 15 faculties all with Ph.D. degree, with three professors, four associate professors, and eight assistant professors, are employed in the department. Academic research in this department is emphasized in five directions, including Biodiversity, Animal Model, Plant and Microorganism Biotechnology, Molecular Biology, and Natural Product Development. The department offered both degrees of B.S. and master in Agriculture. Research and teaching laboratories including bioinformatics, biodiversity, nutrigenomics, proteomics, animal room, NMR, LC MS, GC MS, plant culture room, embryo technology, natural product pilot plant were instituted in the department. In addition to the academic basic knowledge, practical training programs closely cooperated with local industries especially those located in Ping Tung Agricultural Biotechnology Park emphasizing interdisciplinary study of biological science and technology were provided. International programs to expose students to English learning environment, state-of-the-art research skills and in-depth knowledge of advanced biology, chemistry and physics to harness the potential of biotechnology were well established.
The Institute has excellent research personnel and well-equipped facilities. The major objectives of the Institute are:
1. to promote agriculture-related and environmental protection research;
2. to train and educate students as senior-standard professionals of biotechnology with the abilities to conduct independent research;
3. to improve technologies in agriculture and environmental protection; and
4. to develop and apply biotechnology in industries.
Faculty and Facilities
Currently, there are 4 full-time faculty members, 11 joint faculty members from different departments of the College of Agriculture, and 1 senior technician with a master degree in the Institute.
The Institute was moved into the Biotechnology Hall in 2004. The Hall provides laboratory space for the 4 full-time and some joint faculty members. In addition, to facilitate teaching and research work, teaching and research facilities are provided by the University and the Minister of Education and are organized in the shared space of the Hall according to their purposes.
In addition to fundamental courses, the Institute offers more than 20 major courses that can be grouped into three different fields based on the objectives of teaching and research:
1. Animal group: animal cell culture, application of animals and aquacultural animals breeding, transgenic animals, development of vaccines and diagnostics, advanced cell biology, mechanisms of animal aging.
2. Native-product group: chemistry of native products, methods of analysis for organic compounds, spectrometry of organic compounds.
3. Microbiology group: advanced microbial physiology, rumen microbiology, applied microbiology, bioconversion technology, bioreactors, biotechnology applied in pollution control.
The university is located in the tropical area of Taiwan that is enriched of agricultural and biological resources, hence is with great potential for the development of biotechnology. The Graduate Institute of Biotechnology is, therefore, established to enhance basic and applied research in biotechnology, and to assist the nation-wide strategy of the development of biotechnology-related industries.
Since 2000, the Institute has collaborated with the government of Pingtung County on a project of the development of biological and agricultural technologies, and has also participated in several projects sponsored by the National Science and Technology Program for Agricultural Biotechnology, including the development of biofertilizer, studies of microbial genomes, exploration of useful genes from soil genomic libraries, and isolation of native compounds with anti-diabetic effects from bitter-gourds. In addition, several projects sponsored by the National Science Council or Council of Agriculture are being undertaken in the Institute as well.
The Institute will continue to actively participate in national and international integrated research projects, and to provide for students training of professional and practical skills to meet the requirements of industries.