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February 15th, 2007

Postdocs vital to research effort

The more than 35,000 postdoctoral associates working in U.S. universities and other research institutions may be the unsung heroes of science in the U.S., but they are not working in obscurity. In a survey done a few years ago of research articles published in the magazine Science, 43 percent of the first authors were postdocs.

Indrajit Roy, who earned his Ph.D. at the University of New Delhi, took a postdoc position in the Institute for Lasers, Photonics and Biophotonics in 2000 and conducted research on nanoparticles as delivery vehicles in medicine. He moved to the Johns Hopkins University to work in the same capacity with a cancer research group to get more experience on the medical side of nanomedicine.

While he was at Johns Hopkins, Roy stayed in contact with his UB mentor, Paris N. Prasad. In 2004, when the National Cancer Institute announced a program of funding for nanotechnology-based platforms for cancer diagnosis and therapy, Roy participated in writing a proposal that brought a $3.46 million grant to UB and Johns Hopkins for research aimed at developing nanotechnologies for earlier diagnosis and more effective treatment of pancreatic cancer. Roy returned to UB to work with Prasad on that grant, as well as on other projects, including nanoparticle-based multi-probe systems for medical imaging.


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