ICAR NRC Banana organizes the VIROCON 2023 at Tiruchirappalli with a theme of “Advancements in Global Virus Research Towards One Health” on 01.12.2023 to 03.12.2023
ICAR-National Research Centre for Banana, Trichy, and the Indian Virological Society (IVCS), New Delhi jointly organized VIROCON 2023 with the focal theme of “Advancements in Global Virus Research Towards One Health”, a unique National Conference under the One Health Concept, heldfrom 1-3, December, 2023, in Tiruchirappalli, Tamil Nadu. The major objective of the Conference was to providean opportunity for plant, animal, medical and aquatic virologists to engage in productive scientific discussions, seeking solutions to combat viral epidemics affecting human, animal, plant, fish, and environmental health under the One Health concept advocated by the World Health Organization.
Dr. R. Selvarajan, Director/ Organizing Secretary of VIROCON-2023 presided over the inaugural function and welcomed the dignitaries and delegates. In his introductory speech, he said that this VIROCON aims to propel virology research worldwide by providing a common platform for researchers, students and other stakeholders of all the three sectors viz, medical, plant and animal husbandry including fisheries.
Dr. T.R. Sharma, DDG (Crop Science and Horticultural Science), the Chief Guestreleased two books and presented 10 IVS awards and in his address,he said that viruses pose a big threat to agriculture, aquaculture and animal husbandries, affecting global food security and disrupting essential industries. It is a crucial time for developing comprehensive and sustainable solutions to safeguard public health and protect our food supply by concentrating on the study of virology.
The Guests of Honour included are Dr. Anupam Varma, Emeritus Scientist, IARI, New Delhi; Dr Yash Pal Malik, Secretary General, IVS, New Delhi; Dr. Indranil Dasgupta, Vice President, IVS, New Delhi; Dr. D.V.R. Sai Gopal, Vice Chancellor, Cluster University, Kurnool and Dr. K. Narayanasamy, Vice Chancellor, Tamil Nadu MGR Medical University, Chennai.
Dr. K. Narayanasamy, Vice Chancellor, Tamil Nadu MGR Medical University, Chennai said that people studying arts and economics scholars also have started realizing the significance of virus and its impact on the economy because viruses are more powerful than nuclear bomb.
Eminent Plant Virologist Porf. Anupam Varma, while speaking he stressed that there are several viruses infecting the crops especially cereals, pulses and horticultural crops leading up 70% of yield loss and he advocated to adopt integrated approach to tackle viral diseases.
Dr. D.V.R. Sai Gopal, Vice Chancellor, Cluster University, Kurnool, in his speech he said that after covid19, demand on virology, microbiology and biotechnology has been increased and universities included the subjects in the institutions.
Dr YPS Malik briefed about activities of Indian Virology Society, while Prof. Indranil Dasgupta, Vice President, stressed the importance of diagnostics.
Totally 444 delegates from India including scientists, students and research scholars representing 70 institutes such as ICAR, ICMR, AIMS, SAUs, NIV, PGIMER, DRDO and Universities besides a few foreign delegates participated in the conference. A large number of women scientists /scholars (55%) participated.
There were 19 Technical Sessions in which 3 IVS award lectures, 9 young scientist award lectures, 8 keynote lectures, 69 lead talks, 116 oral presentations and 142 poster presentations were made under various thematic areas. Besides, four workshops (Pre-Conference National Workshop on “Troubleshooting and Quality Control in Molecular Virus Diagnosis: PCR to DNA sequencing”; three workshops on Plant Virus disease management, Disease free Shrimp farming with special reference to WSD and HPM, and Lumpy Skin Disease in Cattle) were organized on the sidelines of VIROCON-2023 in which 146 farmers and other stakeholders participated. The proceedings and recommendations from VIROCON 2023 are being communicated to the Ministries and other Departments for consideration and implementation for the benefit of all stakeholders.