The Department of Agricultural Biotechnology was established in 1989 at Assam Agricultural University, the oldest Agricultural University in the North East of India. This Department, supported by the Department of Agricultural Biotechnology, Govt of India, has been conferring M.Sc degree in Biotechnlogy ever since its inception and from 2010-11 offers Ph.D degree programme for students with both Agricultural and non-Agricultural sciences background. The Department has a strength of 15 major faculty members majority of whom have been well trained abroad on different areas of Biotechnology. It also has well equipped laboratory facilities for Gene Technology, Molecular Markers, RNAi, Microbial Biotechnology etc with state of the art equipments like the Roche 454 GLX+ pyrosquencer, ABI capillary-sequencer etc. Based on the infrastructure, human resource and publications, the Department has been ranked “B+” by DBT for M.Sc Agricultural Biotechnology teaching programme.
Several competitive research grants from national agencies like DBT, ICAR, DST, UGC etc. and international agencies such as Kirkhouse Trust, UK have been awarded to the Department. In addition, several international collaborating research projects under Indo-Swiss, Indo-Australia, Indo-USA have been completed and are presently running in the Department. A major research achievement of the department has been generation of insect resistant transgenic chickpea lines which have been transferred to public (IIPR, Kanpur, ICRISAT, Patancheru, UAS, Darwad, PAU, Ludhiana) and private (Sungro Seeds) organization for varietal development. As a recognition of the Departments achievement in teaching and research, in 2011 it was awarded a Centre of Excellence in Agricultural Biotechnology.