In addition to floristic survey and documentation, the centre has moved a step ahead in establishment of well-equipped Molecular Diagnostic Laboratory in 2017, aimed at the molecular standardization and to conduct the phylogeny studies of various groups of plants, with current prime focus on mycological studies. The laboratory is well-equipped with the state of art facilities such as Refrigerated centrifuge, Deep Freezer, Refrigerator, Vortex shaker, Digital Dry Bath, BOD Incubator shaker, Gel Documentation system, Gradient PCR, Water Bath, Mini gel Electrophoresis with Power Pack, Compound Light Microscope, Water Purification system, etc. It is used to carry out, DNA isolation, PCR, Gel Electrophoresis, Gel Documentation, DNA Elution etc. In addition to this, the lab is also providing hands on training in Molecular Techniques to research scholars and researchers from various institutes/universities.
Mycology Research Laboratory:
The Mycology Research laboratory was established in 2013 at Western Regional centre of BSI with a view to furnish the knowledge on living fungi. Fungal specimens/cultures of Indian origin and newly reported taxa (including new genera, new species, new records) are maintained at BSI WRC Pune to ensure ex-situ conservation of microbial diversity.
Main objectives and activities:
1. Collection, isolation and identification of fungal specimens/cultures.
2. Description of new genera and species of fungi in India.
3. Taxonomic characterization of different groups of fungal specimens.
4. Conservation, Preservation and maintenance of fungal specimens/cultures.
5. Documentation of fungal herbarium specimens/cultures.
6. Providing national identification service to mycologists, plant pathologists, scientists and researchers throughout the country.
7. To supply authentic fungal cultures and related services to scientists working in research Institutions, Universities for teaching, demonstration and investigational purposes
The Myco lab is preserving more than 500 fungal cultures isolated from various forest areas of Western Ghats. The lab is also providing hands on training in Mycological techniques such as preparation of growth media, various isolation procedures, inoculations, maintaining of Fungal cultures etc.
Scanning Electron Microscope:
The Electron Microscopy – SEM Section is a multidisciplinary research and educational facility within the Centre. The centre has a high-resolution Field Emission Scanning Electron Microscope [SEM - Model EVO 18-12-97 (Zeiss)]. At present, the SEM is used in all ongoing research projects covering diverse research areas and plant groups with studies of seed, pubescence and pollen studies in Angiosperms; spores and fruiting bodies in Fungi; spores in Pteridophyte and filaments in Algae. It is useful in conducting morphological and compositional information and analyzing surface features providing information of micro-structures, examine surface contaminations and identify crystalline structures of higher and lower groups of Plants, thus providing valuable information on diagnostic micro-characters.
Cytology and Anatomy Laboratory:
The Cytology Laboratory of the Centre was established with basic facilities to carry out research work in anatomy, surface morphology and chromosome studies of higher plants. Currently the laboratory focuses on the anatomy, seed morphology and chromosomal studies of endemic orchids.