Understanding The Purpose Behind Bio-X-Labs: What Are They?

Image Credits: The New York Times

Specialization is the key and not just specialization at a late age; we are talking about early specialization. The goal is to catch them young and provide them with specialized training facilities. Enter Bio-(X)-Labs or BXLs. Bio-(X)-Labs (BXLs) can help build a platform for healthcare entrepreneurial design thinking in schools. 

The basic principle on which a BXL works is by adding the component of feeling to pre-existing knowledge, which results in empathy creation.

In today’s highly competitive atmosphere, the survival of healthcare institutions depends mainly on the ability to provide value-added services (VAS) at the lowest possible cost. BXLs move away from just performing experiments in a biology laboratory to understanding what value addition means in healthcare. As ‘X’ in a Bio-(X)-Labs signifies that value addition. 

On a typical day, when you would enter into a BXL, you will find that some students would be building a Kiwi DNA extraction kit in one corner, whereas in another corner, some super innovative kids would be producing glowing bacteria that fluoresce different colors. To do so, such a BXL would be equipped with culture tubes, falcon tubes, spectrophotometer (or colorimeter), micropipette and sterile tips, sterile broth for growing bacteria, vortex mixers, incubators, power supplies for gel and electrophoresis, and so on. This would allow students to better understand the importance of biotechnology in the 21st century rather than just studying biotechnology for a school examination. The BXL would allow students to touch and feel various aspects of biotechnology, thus satisfying the component of ‘feeling’ in equation-A.

The students would run these experiments under expert supervision. The ‘knowledge’ component in equation-A is provided by the subject matter experts (SMEs) and mentors. They would also be discussing the ethical issues, especially the concepts of a cell, chromosome, GMO, identification of GM foods in their diet, pros and cons of GM foods, DNA, gene, comparison of traditional methods of plant breeding and modern techniques of genetic engineering, and importance of responsible use of technology with the students. 

If a student has come up with a ground-breaking startup idea, blended finance models could be explored wherein the students can raise debts early on in their startup journey. BXLs, if planned and executed correctly, could be a game-changer. It is extremely essential for any nation to impart twenty-first-century skills in biotechnology to their children at an early age and let their interests and passion develop in such STEM subjects.


Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here