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Scientists

Dr. Sunil Archak

Designation:
Officer-In-Charge
     
Division/RS/Unit:
Agriculture Knowledge Management Unit
     
Discipline:
Biotechnology (Plant Science)
Contact:
011-25802883; +91 9999421947
     
E-Mail:
sunil.archak(AT)icar.gov.in
     
Personal Webpage:
     
Salient Achievements:
  • Infrastructure/Facility creation: Established from the scratch the Molecular Genetics Laboratory on Horticultural crops at #E-206, NRC on DNA Fingerprinting, NBPGR (1998); National Genomic Resources Repository at #B-201, NBPGR (2010) and Plant Genetic Resources Informatics Facility at B-106 NBPGR (2011). Operationalized a few big externally funded projects to maintain, develop and utilize the facilities.
  • Germplasm Acquisition: Undertook an exploratory visit to Central Asian countries (Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan and Uzbekistan) during 14-27 Sept 2015. Collected 60 germplasm accessions belonging primarily to various vegetable and fruits crops including wild Allium species.
  • Germplasm Characterization and Evaluation: Large-scale characterization & evaluation of 22K wheat germplasm led to wheat core (2208) and identification of new sources of rust resistance; Large-scale characterization of 14K chickpea germplasm led to chickpea core (1103 accessions), 70% of which were of Indian origin; Charcterization of 15,000 rice germplasm accessions led to a core of 1500 accessions.
  • DNA Profiling of PGR: Demonstrated narrowing of genetic diversity in tomato cultivars; pioneered marker studies in cashew established multiple introduction events of cashew in India with empirical evidence;  citrus rootstock identification;  quantified population admixture and continuum of genetic variation among Indian landraces of brinjal. Established a protocol for single tube multiplex assay for quick and acurate profiling of export-oriented basmati samples for detection and quantification of adulteration. This patented protocol has been the standard assay for APEDA.
  • PGR Informatics: My major contribution during the last five years is “taking PGR Informatics from mere documentation activity to a science based endeavor”. At NBPGR today, ONLY online systems are used for germplasm exchange, ex situ conservation information management, germplasm registration, herbarium information management, IP management, etc. My team has developed web-apps [highly accessed PGR Portal, novel map-based application PGR Map, PGR-Climate application, Linking Genebank to Genbank] as well as mobile apps [Genebank and PGR Map for both Android and iOS users]
  • PGR Policy: Since 2017, I have been representing India in the negotiations for the revision of material transfer agreement and expansion of the coverage at several technical as well as in two Governing Body meetings. I have made conscious and systematic efforts to build leadership role for India in the Asia region on matters related to access and benefit sharing. India will be hosting GB9 and significantly, India emerged as the consensus leader among the Asia region members.
  • PG Teaching: Being dual faculty in PGR and Bioinformatics, I teach four courses (at least one in each trimester) and currently guiding eight PhD students. Five MSc and one PhD students have submitted theses.


Please visit pgrinformatics.nbpgr.ernet.in for details of web-apps and mobile apps

Apps can be downloaded from Google Play and App Store


Conference/workshop/brainstorming meeting organized

  1. National Symposium on Plant Genetic Resources Management: Advances and Challenges (2001) Organizer
  2. Global Consultation on Use and Management of Agrobiodiversity for Sustainable Food Security (2013) Organizer
  3. International Agrobiodiversity Congress (2016) Member Secretary, Technical Program Committee
  4. Brainstorming meeting on “Strategies for Implementation of Delhi Declaration on Agrobiodiversity Management in India” (2017) Chair, Technical Program, Proceedings and Publication Committee
  5. Asia Region Workshop on the Preparation of the National Reports on the Implementation of the International Treaty on PGRFA (2018) Organizer

Trainings organized

  1. GIS and climate analogue tools for PGR management and enhanced use (2013) Coordinator (CCAFS CGIAR funded; Asia regional training)
  2. Computational genome analysis techniques in discovery of agronomically important crop genes (2012) Convener (ICAR funded)
  3. Conservation of Genomic Resources (2012) Course Director (NAIP funded)
  4. Molecular Diagnostics for Risk Assessment & Management of GM Crops (2011) Course Co-Director (NAIP funded)
  5. Genetics and Genomics Data Analysis Using SAS (2011) Course Co-Director (ICAR funded)
  6. PCR based techniques for plant DNA fingerprinting (2001) Organizer (NBPGR funded)
  7. Molecular marker techniques for DNA fingerprinting (1999) Organizer (NBPGR funded)

Extra-mural projects implemented

  1. Utilization of ex situ collections and climate analogues for enhancing adaptive capacity to climate change. 2011-2015, Principal Investigator. CCAFS, CGIAR CRP-7, $100,000
  2. National Rice Resource Database, 2009-2016, Co- Principal Investigator, DBT, Rs.163L
  3. Acquisition, evaluation and identification of climate resilient wheat and rice genetic resources for tolerance to heat, drought and salt stresses, 2010-2014, Co- Principal Investigator, NICRA, Rs. 415L
  4. National Agricultural Bioinformatics Grid, 2009-2012, Co- Principal Investigator, NAIP, Rs.110L

     
Awards/Honours:

 

Peer recognition

  • ICAR National Fellowship (2014-2019) (2019-ongoing)
  • Membership of various committees/working groups (International)
  1. Scientific Advisory Committee of the International Treaty on Plant Genetic Resources for Food and Agriculture (ITPGRFA). http://www.fao.org/plant-treaty/en/
  2. Ad Hoc Open-ended Working Group to enhance the functioning of the Multi-Lateral System International Treaty on Plant Genetic Resources for Food and Agriculture (ITPGRFA). http://www.fao.org/plant-treaty/en/
  3. Member, Genesys Advisory Committee (https://www.genesys-pgr.org/)
  • Membership of various committees/ working groups (National)
  1. PPV&FRA Task Force Committee on Complementing DUS characterization through DNA fingerprinting.
  2. PPV&FRA Task Force on Documentation of Farmers’ Varieties and Associated Traditional Knowledge.
  3. Department of Biotechnology Technical Expert Committee (TEC) on Agriculture Biotechnology.
  4. Department of Biotechnology Technical Expert Committee (TEC) on Agriculture Biotechnology and Allied Sciences for North East Region (NER).
  5. Department of Biotechnology Expert committee on Platform for Genomics to Breeding, New Delhi.
  6. National Biodiversity Authority Expert Committee on Developing SCPs on Access and Benefit Sharing for Academic Research & its Allied Sectors
  7. Scientific Advisory Committee (RAP-SAC), Center for DNA Fingerprinting and Diagnostics, Hyderabad.
  8. Institute Management Committees of
    1. ICAR- National Institute of Agricultural Economics and Policy Research, New Delhi.
    2. ICAR-National Bureau of Fish Genetic Resources, Lucknow.
    3. ICAR-Indian Agriculrural Statistical Research Institute, New Delhi.
    4. ICAR-National Research Center on Rapeseed and Mustard, Bharatpur.
    5. ICAR-Central Tobacco Research Institute, Rajahmundry.
  • Fellowship of Indian Society of Plant Genetic Resources (2009)
  • Reviewer for a few journals [Euphytica, Scientia Horticulturae, Bioinformatics, PGR: Characterisation and Utilisation,  Journal of Plant Biochemistry and Biotechnology, Genomics, Proteomics and Bioinformatics, BMC journals, etc.]

  • 5 Gold medals and 3 awards (B.Sc. Agri), UASB
  • IARI Merit medal (M.Sc.), IARI?
  • Recipient of the following scholarships/fellowships

    i.    Merit Scholarship during B.Sc. (Agri)
    ii.    ICAR Junior Research Fellowship (Genetics and Plant Breeding).
    iii.   IARI Junior Research Fellowship (Molecular Biology and Biotechnology).
    iv.   IARI Senior Research Fellowship (Molecular Biology and Biotechnology).
    v.    CSIR Junior Research Fellowship.
    vi.   K.S.Krishnan Fellowship.


     
Recent Publications Research Papers
1.  Archak S, Rana JC, Singh P and Gaikwad AB (2016). Potential of gene-specific sequence-tagged-sites (STS) as trait specific markers in buckwheat (Fagopyrum spp.)Journal of Plant Biochemistry and Biotechnology261-12
2.  Archak S, Tyagi RK, Harer PN, Mahase LB, Singh N, Om P Dahiya, Nizar MA, Singh M, Tilekar V, Kumar V, Dutta M, Singh NP and Bansal KC (2016). Characterization of chickpea germplasm conserved in the Indian National Genebank and development of a core set using qualitative and quantitative trait dataThe Crop Journal41-8
3.  Saxena S, Singh A, Archak S, Behera TK, John JK, Meshram SU and Gaikwad AB (2015). Development of Novel Simple Sequence Repeat Markers in Bitter Gourd (Momordica charantia L.) Through Enriched Genomic Libraries and Their Utilization in Analysis of Genetic Diversity and Cross-Species TransferabilityApplied Biochemistry and Biotechnology17593-118
4.  Archak S and Nagaraju J (2014). Computational analyses of protein coded by rice (Oryza sativa japonica) cDNA (GI: 32984786) indicate lectin like Ca2+ binding properties for Eicosapenta Peptide Repeats (EPRs)Bioinformation1063-67
5.  Vikas VK, Sivasamy M, Kumar J, Jayaprakash P, Kumar S, Parimalan R, Kumar A, Srinivasan K, Radhamani J, Jacob S, Yadav M, Rani J, Bisht IS, Bhandari DC, Archak S, Dutta M, Tyagi RK and Bansal KC (2014). Stem and leaf rust resistance in wild relatives of wheat with D genome (Aegilops spp.)Genetic Resources and Crop Evolution61861-874
6.  Archak S and Kumar V (2013). Portable search engine for registered crop germplasm: a new concept for enhancing access to information on plant genetic resourcesPlant Genetic Resources: Characterization and Util1162-67
7.  Archak S, Gaikwad AB, Swamy KRM and Karihaloo JL (2009). Genetic analysis and historical perspective of cashew (Anacardium occidentale L.) introduction into IndiaGenome52222-230
8.  Archak S, Lakshminarayanareddy V and Nagaraju J (2007). High throughput multiplex microsatellite marker assay for detection and quantification of adulteration in Basmati rice (Oryza sativa)Electrophoresis282396-2405
9.  Archak S, Meduri E, Kumar PS and Nagaraju J (2007). InSatDb: a microsatellite database of fully sequenced insect genomesNucleic acids research35D36-D39
10.  Archak S and Nagaraju J (2006). Eicosapentapeptide repeats (EPRs): novel repeat proteins specific to flowering plantsBioinformatics222455-2458
     
 
Disclaimer:
The contents of this page are personal information/views of the staff. NBPGR is neither responsible for the contents or reliability nor endorses the views expressed within them.
     
Last Updated : 02/11/2021