Home Education Dr Bushra Ateeq, Ritesh Agarwal Win India’s Highest Award in Medical Sciences

Dr Bushra Ateeq, Ritesh Agarwal Win India’s Highest Award in Medical Sciences

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Dr Bushra Ateeq (L) and Dr Ritesh Agarwal

Mumtaz Alam | Inclusive India

New Delhi, September 30Aligarh Muslim University alumna Dr Bushra Ateeq, currently Associate Professor at the Indian Institute of Technology, Kanpur, and Dr Ritesh Agarwal, Professor at the Postgraduate Institute of Medical Education and Research, Chandigarh have won the prestigious Shanti Swarup Bhatnagar Award 2020 – the country’s highest science prize. Dr Bushra and Dr Ritesh have been selected for the award for their separate pathbreaking research in the field of medicine. The Shanti Swarup Bhatnagar Award 2020 has been given to 12 other researchers also in different fields of science.

At the Foundation Day celebration of the Council for Scientific and Industrial Research (CSIR) on September 26, the Union Science and Technology minister Dr Harsh Vardhan announced the 14 awards in the following fields: Medical Sciences; Biological Sciences; Chemical Sciences; Earth, Atmosphere, Ocean and Planetary Sciences; Engineering Sciences; Mathematical Sciences; and Physical Sciences.

In the field of Medical Sciences, Dr Bushra has shared the award with Dr Ritesh.

Dr Bushra’s research is focused on cancer biomarkers and the chain of events at the molecular scale that result in prostate and breast cancer.

Dr Ritesh has been selected for the award for his contributions in understanding a fungal infection called allergic bronchopulmonary aspergillosis.

According to the information available on the official website of IIT-Kanpur, Dr. Bushra did Ph.D. from Aligarh Muslim University, Aligarh and later worked at various national and international institutes. She joined the Biological Sciences and Bioengineering Department at the IIT-Kanpur in February 2013. She was trained as a postdoctoral fellow in Dr. Arul Chinnaiyan’s group at Michigan Center for Translational Pathology, University of Michigan. She also served there as a Research Investigator (Junior Faculty) before joining IIT Kanpur. Prior to this, she was a postdoctoral trainee in Dr. Shafaat Rabbani’s group at McGill University, Montreal. She served a brief stint as a Research Associate at All India Institute of Medical Sciences, New Delhi and National Institute of Immunology, New Delhi.

The website also has a brief about Dr Bushra’s research interests. Dr. Bushra’s research group at IIT-Kanpur is “primarily interested in exploring the genetic and epigenetic changes that initiate cancer and its progression by employing novel strategies and approaches.” “Her overarching goal is to explore the molecular events that drive cancer and facilitate the process of acquiring resistance towards chemotherapeutic drugs, in hopes that these discoveries can lead to the development of more effective therapies against specific causative pathways or alterations,” it adds.

AMU Vice Chancellor Prof. Tariq Mansoor has congratulated alumna of the university Dr Bushra on her getting the Shanti Swarup Bhatnagar Award 2020.

“AMU takes pride in congratulating its alumna, Dr Bushra Ateeq, Faculty Member at IIT Kanpur for bagging India’s highest science award ‘Shanti Swarup Bhatnagar Prize 2020’. That this honour came in AMU’s Centenary year has made it more special. We wish her more success in future,” said the VC in a tweet.

Dr Bushra thanked the VC and said she is proud to be the graduate of AMU.

“Thanks Honorable Vice Chancellor @ProfTariqManso1 for your best wishes. AMU has very important role in what I am today, I consider myself very fortunate to have great teachers and enriching environment there. Proud to be an alumna !!!,” Dr Bushra replied to the tweet.

The Shanti Swarup Bhatnagar Prize is awarded by CSIR to Indian scientists below 45 years of age for conducting outstanding research in science. The prize includes a citation, a plaque, and a cash award of Rs five lakh.

Meanwhile, the Central Drug Research Institute has also felicitated Dr Bushra and two other young researchers – Surajit Ghosh and Ravi Manjithaya – for their contribution to drug discovery and development. Dr Surajit is professor at IIT-Jodhpur and Dr Ravi is associate professor at Jawaharlal Nehru Centre for Advanced Scientific Research, Bengaluru.