Metropolis Laboratories offers in excess of 4,500 tests and test combinations, ranging from routine screening tests to super specialised molecular and genetic assays. Metropolis has always been in the forefront in employing latest technology and automations, adopting stringent internal and external quality control mechanisms and making planned investments in research and development.
Metropolis is India’s first multi-national chain of diagnostic centres with 120 state of the art laboratories in 7 countries and over 750 collection centres across countries. Our Laboratory Services has been segmented in to 7 core functions. Though many tests and test combinations overlap with each other, all section units work in tandem. The segmentation is critical since the techniques, automation and quality process that each section demands in unique from each other.
Clinical chemistry is the area of clinical pathology that is generally concerned with analysis of blood (Whole blood, serum, plasma), urine, body fluids for screening, diagnosis and monitoring of many diseases.
When is it used?
Tests done in clinical chemistry are varied and largely used for cardiovascular disorders, endocrine disorders like diabetes, thyroids, kidney disorders, cancers, infertility, pregnancy, nutritional disorders (Vitamins, heavy and trace metals), new born screening, autoimmunity and allergy, infections, etc.Tests are designed to detect these changes qualitatively or quantitatively and compared to the biological reference Interval of human beings.
Clinical pathologists and biochemists use a wide range of techniques including Immunoassays like ELISA, chemiluminescence, enzyme linked flourescence, radioimmunoassay; Biochemical methods like colorimetry, enzymatic reactions, spectrophotometry, nephelometry, electrophoresis; Analytical chemistry methods like high performance liquid chromatography, atomic absorption, mass spectrometry, infrared spectrometry, etc.Technicians and experts at Metropolis have developed complex practical and interpretive skills for manual techniques and management of highly automated testing systems. All assays are closely monitored and quality controlled.
We are equipped with the latest US FDA approved automations and infrastructure, CE marked reagents, updated with advanced and newest technologies and armed with a team of experts who bring to the table a world of experience.
Clinical Microbiology is one of the most evolving branches of laboratory medicine. The clinical microbiology laboratory is central to the diagnosis and management of infectious diseases. Accurate and timely infectious disease diagnosis is crucial in appropriate therapeutic management of patients. In the current era of multidrug resistance, clinical microbiology laboratories are crusaders in antibiotic stewardship by providing antimicrobial resistance data to physicians and hospitals.
Clinical Microbiology testing encompasses a broad range of infectious disease testing in major broad areas such as Bacteriology, Mycobacteriology, Mycology, Parasitology, Infectious Immunology (Serology) and Molecular Microbiology.
A range of techniques are employed in the laboratory to process specimens and ensure accurate and timely results. Use of state of the art techniques and technologies has a positive impact on the workflow and quality of results.
Special stains such as Modified Kinyoun, Trichrome, LPCB, AuramineRhodamine, etc are used for morphological identification of bacteria, parasites and a variety of fungi.
A variety of enriched, differential, chromogenic and selective media are used at various incubation temperatures and atmospheric conditions (aerobic, anaerobic, capnophilic and microaerophilic) to ensure growth of common as well as fastidious pathogens.
Microbroth dilution techniques, KirbyBauer disc diffusion techniques, biochemical analysis are employed effectively to tackle with the diverse range of pathogens encountered.
BACTEC FX: Automated continuous monitoring system for blood cultures for quicker interventions in Sepsis.
Vitek2 Compact: Automated efficient system for faster accurate identification of pathogens. Complemented by an Advanced Expert system for susceptibility testing of pathogens, Microbrothdilution (MIC) testing is offered to clinicians for targeted therapy of patients.
BACTEC MGIT 960: The newer Gold standard in Tuberculosis is a fully automated liquid culture technology for rapid culture of Mycobacteria. The same system is also designed to carry out susceptibility testing for the complete panel of anti-TB drugs.
Sysmex UF-1000i: Automated urine sedimentanalyzer system for Flowcytometry based morphology analysis of urine specimens.
Immunology Services:A range of platforms employing ELISA, CLIA, CMIA, ELFA and IF(Immunofluorescence) techniques for antigen antibody detection.
Molecular Microbiology: Fully automated latest molecular platforms such as Qiasymphony,Roche COBAS® AmpliPrep/COBAS TaqMan ,Cepheid's GeneXpert, Applied Biosystems® 3500 Dx Genetic Analyzer,Rotor-Gene® Q MDx 5plex HRM Platform, are used to offer faster, sensitive diagnosis of viral, bacterial and fungal agents. Apart from qualitative and quantitative testing, we offer Genotyping (HIV, HBVand HCV) and Drug Resistance testing for (HBV, HIV).
Clinical Microbiology is a science of interpretive judgement. When dealing with complex pathogens; we offer Expert consultations on diagnostic report interpretations which will assist in therapeutic decision making.
What sets us apart is our expertise and experience built over the years and our relentless commitment to quality supported by our highly trained technical team.
The state of art Metropolis Microbiology laboratory is one of few laboratories offering a complete range of infectious disease referral services.
One of the few laboratories in the country to offer anaerobic and comprehensive parasitology testing.
One of the few laboratories in the country to offer organism-isolate specific panels as per latest CLSI guidelines. Our capabilities include guidance on antibiotic resistance monitoring and infection control practices.
Metropolis Mycobacteriology laboratory is RNTCP accredited and an active member of IPAQT initiative for Tuberculosis.
Apart from liquid culture (MGIT) and Susceptibility for M. tuberculosis, the laboratory also offers a complete range of Molecular drug resistance testing services including Genexpert, Line probe assays. Our Algorithm based screening and innovative panels in Tuberculosis incorporating multiple levels of testing from Microscopy to Culture to Molecular play a vital role in ensuring accurate diagnosis.
Also, we are one the few laboratories in the country to offer molecular identification of Nontuberculous Mycobacteria (NTM) and their susceptibility testing.
Mycology capabilities include morphological identification of a variety of Candida and fungi including Dermatophytes. We also offer automated susceptibility and MIC testing for yeasts. Comprehensive capabilities, guidance on appropriate specimen collection, extensive support are vital when treating complex or chronic infections. Our innovative test menu and expert skills would help you to tackle a range of resistant, newly emerging or remerging strains and pathogens.
Cytogenetics is a branch of genetics that is concerned with the study of the structure and function of the cell, especially the chromosomes in health and disease.
When is it used?
Genetic studies are an important laboratory diagnostic procedure in
Genetic Counseling services: Metropolis is the only lab in India to offer Genetic Counselling services to its customers. It is an education and training initiative which aims to spread knowledge about genetic aspects of illness in terms of risk analysis, presence of heritable disorder or of chances of passing it to their unborn offspring with following principle elements: diagnostic and clinical aspects, documentation of family and pedigree information, recognition of inheritance patterns risk estimation, scientific communication and empathy in those seen, information on available options and further measures, support in decision making and discussion on cost effectiveness.
Genetic counselling can be offered to large number of genetic disorders for different conditions and different age groups.
Tissues used for analysis: Blood, Bone Marrow, Amniotic fluid, CVS, Cord blood, Abortus material (POC – products of conception)
It includes routine analysis of G-banded chromosomes, other cytogenetic banding and staining techniques, as well as molecular cytogenetics such as Fluorescent in situ Hybridization (FISH) and comparative genome hybridization. New techniques allow for increased resolution of chromosome banding patterns, permitting differentiation of a greater number of abnormalities.
Our trained team of specialists combined with our 33 year experience ensure accurate clinical correlation. In addition to our NABL, CAP Accreditation and adherence to US FDA approved standards, our Centre is also authorized under the PCPNDT Act for prenatal testing. We offer expert opinion services in the form of interpretative comments, clinical correlation and report discussion.
Fully accredited laboratory, wide range of Genetic services and counselling services, well qualified, experienced and dedicated team of Medical Doctor, Senior Scientists, and technologists. Competitive and reasonable charges, minimum turn-around time, priority to paediatric and critical cases, and all results are interpreted by Qualified Medical Geneticist.
Highly qualified and experienced clinical Geneticist available for clinical correlation, interpretation of report, and Genetic Counseling.
Cytogenetics (Conventional Karyotyping, High Resolution Banding, Breakage studies, staining and Banding techniques)
Molecular Cytogenetics (FISH) for Aneuploidies on various tissues including sperm FISH,various microdeletions, Solid tumors and hematological malignancies.
PCR/Sequencing based Molecular studies: Thalassemia, DMD/BMD, SMA, SCA, Fridreich Ataxia, Huntigton Disease Y-microdeletion, Fragile X, Paternity test, Factor II and Factor V.
Techniques & Automation:
A team of Geneticists and senior scientists available on telephone for any queries right from sample selection to report discussion.
Highly qualified and experienced Clinical Geneticist available for clinical correlation, interpretation of report, and Genetic Counselling.
Haematopathology & Hemostasis are the branches of pathology which studies diseases of hematopoietic (blood) cells & blood components. The Hematopathology laboratory provides diagnostic evaluation of blood, bone marrow, and related biological samples for diagnosis of specific haematological diseases including Anemias, Leukemias/Lymphomas, Thalessemias, Haemoglobinopathies, etc.
Haematopathology at Metropolis is a large referral tertiary care unit comprising various routine & ancillary specialities like Flow cytometry, Abnormal Haemoglobin studies by HPLC, Transfusion medicine by CAT (Column Agglutination Technique), Fully automated 5-part cell counter and coagulation systems.
Metropolis is one of the very few laboratories to offer round the clock pathologist review. We also offer aggressive TAT (Turn-around Time) for critical tests like Malarial Parasite, Platelet Count, Prothrombin Time etc. With a 33 year experience in delivering accurate and reliable results, we are one of the trusted partners to clinicians and hospitals alike.
Metropolis is the only laboratory which gives complete diagnostic workup of Thalessemias & Haemoglobinopathies by testing on alternate platform (Capillary Electrophoresis) & Molecular methods like DNA PCR & DNA Sequencing, apart from HPLC.
Metropolis offers the comprehensive packages for complete workup of Leukemias & Lymphomas by performing reflex tests by Immunophenotyping, Cytogenetics (FISH) & Molecular methods, post morphology assessment.
Metropolis offers the Blood group test by automated CAT (Column Agglutination Technique) method which is more sensitive & specific to routine slide & tube technique methods.
Techniques & Automation:
Electrophoresis is a method of separation of protein compounds in a salt solution based on their electrical charges when placed in an electric field. The varieties available are Agarose gel Electophoresis, Cellulose gel Electophoresis, Capillary Electophoresis. This technology is used in clinical field for serum Protien Electophoresis, urine Protien Electophoresis, serum Immunofixation, estimation of various isoenzymes (CPK, LDH, Alkaline Phosphatase), CSF Oligoclonal Bands.
Column Agglutination Technique:
This is a gel card based technique where the gel column is used to separate out the agglutinated RBCs from non-agglutinated ones. The investigations done on this technique are Blood Group, Rh antibody titre, Indirect & Direct Coobs test. This method has advantage over conventional slide & tube technique in having higher sensitivity & specificity
High Performance Liquid Chromatography (HPLC):
High performance liquid chromatography (HPLC) is a form of liquid chromatography to separate compounds that are dissolved in solution. HPLC instruments consist of a reservoir of mobile phase, a pump, an injector, a separation column, and a detector. Compounds are separated by injecting the sample mixture onto the column where the different components in the mixture pass through the column at different rates due to differences in their affinity and charges in the mobile liquid phase to the stationary phase. These components elutes out through the column at different retention times unique for the components, which can be quantified. The clinical application of this technology is for Haemoglobinopathies &Thalassemias, estimation of Vitamins, Glycated haemoglobin, Hormones, etc.
Flow cytometry is a unique and novel technology to assess the characteristics of the cells from biological cellular samples which help in arriving at specific medical diagnosis. It functions based on fluidis, optics & electronic mechanisms,allowing simultaneous multiparametric analysis of the physical and/or chemical characteristics more than thousands of cells in very short time span. The clinical application of flow cytometry has emerged from analysis of T-cell subsets (CD3/4/8/19/NK cells) in immunodeficiency syndromes, immunophenotyping in hematolymphoid malignancies to analysis of platelets to enumeration of stem cell population in bone marrow transplantation, DNA content and cell cycle parameters in a wide range of malignancies & molecular microbiology.
This technique is used to differentiate the various white blood cells in blood for automated differential counts in a CBC report. The cell differentiation occurs based on unique characteristics of cell related to volume (V), conductance (C) & scatter (S). This system analyses approximately 8000 cells for giving differential count as compared to 100 or 500 manual differential counting, giving accurate & precise results.
A fully automated coagulation tests system for all the routine and specialised assays. It encompasses three different methodologies like optical, chromogenic & immunoturbidometry required for varied testing parameters.
Molecular diagnostics is a dynamic and transformative area of diagnostics, leading to insights in research and treatment in many disease states that are revolutionizing health care. Molecular diagnostics detect and measure the presence of genetic material or proteins associated with a specific health condition or disease, helping to uncover the underlying mechanisms of disease and enabling clinicians to tailor care at an individual level – facilitating the practice of “personalized medicine.”
Why is it used?
“Molecular diagnostics” is a broad term describing a class of diagnostic tests that assess a person’s health literally at a molecular level, detecting and measuring specific genetic sequences in deoxyribonucleic acid (DNA) or ribonucleic acid (RNA).
The molecular diagnostics industry is growing rapidly, thanks to the inherent accuracy, sensitivity, specificity, and quick turnaround of molecular techniques. In applying molecular diagnostic technology, different methods can be utilized to address different questions.
Metropolis is a leader in molecular diagnostic testing and offers comprehensive test menu through more than 200 molecular diagnostic tests. These tests fall under different areas of medicine, including infectious disease, oncology, genetic testing, human leukocyte antigen typing (which investigates and predicts immune function), predictive diagnostics (identification of a disorder before appearance of clinical symptoms), and pharmacogenomics—the genetic prediction of which drugs will work best. In addition, we offer pre- and post-test counseling.
Surgical pathology is the most significant and time-consuming area of practice for most anatomical pathologists. It includes Histopathology, Cytopathology & Immunohistochemistry.
Histopathology is "the branch of medicine concerned with the changes in tissues caused by disease" - the microscopic anatomical changes in diseased tissue. It helps in making the diagnosis, provides prognostic information and guides management of patients to ensure accurate and timely care of clinical problems encountered by patients. Histopathology is a rapidly changing specialty with new immunohistochemical and molecular methods coming into routine use on a continual basis.
Cytopathology is a discipline that involves the morphologic study of cells. It is broadly divided into exfoliative cytology and aspiration cytology. Exfoliative cytology involves examination of specimens that contain cells exfoliated from body cavities and surfaces. It is further subdivided into gynaecological cytology (Pap/cervical smears) and Non-gynaecological cytology (Pleural fluid, peritoneal fluid, cerebrospinal fluid, urine, bronchoalveolar lavage, sputum, brushing etc). Aspiration cytology involves examination of cells that are actively obtained by fine needle aspiration
Immunohistochemistry: It is the process of detecting antigen in cells of a tissue by exploiting the principle of antibodies specific to antigen in their biologic genome. It is a powerful tool with overlapping features among diagnosis, theranostic and genomic applications.
Dr Anuradha Murthy
Armed with an MD in Pathology from Bombay University, Diploma in in Pathology & Bacteriology, College of Physicians and surgeons (1978), MBBS from Bombay University (1975), Dr Murthy has over 30 years of rich medical experience. She has served in various capacities in prestigious institutions such as Sir Hurkisondas Narrotamdas Hospital & Research Center, Reliance Life Sciences, Imperial College of Medicine, Pathology Department, Hammersmith Hospital, Jaslok Hospital, GSMC & KEM. She is currently working at Metropolis as a Senior Consultant and has special interest in Nephropathology, pediatric pathology, gastrointestinal pathology and Immunofluoresence for kidney disorders. She has numerous publications & presentations to her credit in national & international journals.
Dr. Vikas S. Kavishwar
M.D.(Path.), D.N.B.(Path.), D.P.B.
Dr Vikas is currently serving as Senior Consultant Surgical Pathologist and Cytopathologist at Metropolis, Mumbai. He brings to the table over 20 years of rich clinical experience. He has aslo authored various publications in National and International Journals. His interest lies in Dermatopathology including Direct Immunofluorescence. He also serves as Additional Professor in Pathology at T.N.Medical College and B.Y.L.Nair Hospital, Mumbai
Dr Kirti Chadha
M.B.B.S., M.D.(Pathology), PDDC (Oncopath & Oncohemat)
Diplomate Oncosurgical Pathology & Oncohematology
Dr Kirti, completed her graduation & Post graduation from Pune University. She topped Pune University in MD Pathology in July 2002 with comprehensive residency training in Armed Forces Medical College. Thereafter, she trained in Tata Memorial Hospital , Sir Ganga Ram Hospital, P.D. Hinduja Hospital & Prince Aly Khan Hospital. She was awarded a Post Doctoral Fellowship in Oncosurgical Pathology & Oncohematology by the Indian Association of Pathologists & Microbiologists (IAPM). She is currently working in Metropolis Health Services, Mumbai heading the Oncology division. She has numerous publications & presentations to her credit in national & international journals. Her area of interest is Oncopathology / OncoHematology, LBC , Immunohistochemistry & Molecular Pathology.
SUB SPECIALTY EXPERTS
An initiative by Metropolis in the area of Histopathology which provides subspecialty expert consultation to pathologists for expert opinion on histopathology reports and other medical specialities to help doctors interpret Histopathology reports more effectively for their patients. Organ specific histopathology consultation services are fast catching up in the western world and we are pleased and proud to be the first movers to offer this value addition to our customers. These experts will also build a bio-registry of oncology cases that will serve as a reference point for the industry. Metropolis’s global network is well positioned to provide all background support to make this possible.
Dr Roshan Chinoy - Breast Pathology
Dr Roshan Chinoy served as the Professor & Head , Department of Pathology at Tata Memorial Hospital from 1999 till 2007. She also spearheaded the introduction of FNAC for the first time at TMH in 1985 and introduced the technology of IHC Hormone Receptor ER PR in breast cancer. She Pioneered and nurtured the “Bombay Breast Group”. She also set up the Molecular Pathology labs at ACTREC, and planned and initiated the first Tumour Tissue Repository in India at TMH.
Dr Uday Khopkar - Dermatopathology
Dr Uday Khopkar underwent training with legendary dermatopathologist, Dr. A. Ackerman in reporting of skin biopsy specimens. He has been providing expert opinion on over 5000 complicated cases year on year since 1996. He has also been responsible for initiating a one year University Fellowship course in Diagnostic Dermatology in 2009 for the very first time in India. He has been listed in Marquis Who’s Who in Health and Medicine (2006), Who’s Who in Asia (2006) and Who’s Who in World (2008). He is the Youngest Dermatology Section Editor of API Textbook of Medicine 2008. Apart from all this, he also Initiated and popularized IJDVL e-library project aimed at improving access of academic dermatologists to dermatology journals
Dr Amita Joshi - GI & Pancreatic - Biliary Pathology
Dr Amita Joshi serves as the Professor of pathology, Seth G S Medical College & K E M Hospital, Mumbai. She has also undergone special training in surgical pathology & liver transplant Pathology at USC Pittsburg, USA. She has been In charge of Gastrointestinal & Liver Pathology for over 20 years at K E M Hospital, Mumbai. She has contributed to over 70 papers, publications & guest lectures in National & international journals & conferences. Additionally, she is also an assessor for M B B S & M D (Pathology) Courses for MCI, New Delhi
Dr Deepak Mishra - Hematolymphoid Pathology
Dr Deepak Kumar completed his Post Doctoral Fellowship in Hematology from the prestigious All India Institute of Medical Sciences (AIIMS), New Delhi in 1998. He was a UICC Fellow at the King’s College School of Medicine, London, UK (2001); and at the Harvard Stem Cell Institute, Harvard Medical School, Boston, USA. He has been a visiting Fellow at the Mount Sinai School of Medicine, New York (2000), and at the MDS Centre in Stanford Univ School of Medicine, USA( 2003). He has been a visiting faculty at University of Massachusetts School of Medicine, Worcester, MA, USA (2006) and at the Dept of Haematology, Christian Medical College & Hospital, Vellore (2003).
Dr Mukul Vij - Renal Transplant Pathology
Having completed his MBBS & MD in Pathology, Dr Mukul Vij is also armed with a PDCC in Renal Pathology. Extensively trained in the UK as a transplant pathologist, he is now associated with the Global Health City. He specialises in Liver & Kidney Transplant and has national and international publications to credit.
FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS
What are the services offered by your laboratory?
We offer the following services
• Surgical pathology
• Cytopathology – Gynecologic – Conventional and Liquid based, including Cervical screening
• Cytopathology – Body fluids, FNAC,Polarizing Microscopy for crystals
• Immunohistochemistry Services – Over 120 markers
• Second opinion / consultation
• Expert Opinion - Subspeciality
• Molecular pathology
Please refer the EDOS for individual test details
Do you perform a biopsy?
No, we do not perform a biopsy. This is a procedure performed either by a surgeon (Incisional, Excisional) or by a dermatologist in case of skin biopsies. Histopathologists examine the tissue obtained after a biopsy and issue a report based on their observations.
Do you perform FNAC procedure?
Yes, we do perform a procedure known as Fine needle aspiration Cytology (FNAC) which is performed in our premises. The prerequisites are basic investigations, complete clinical details and doctor’s prescription
Is your Laboratory accredited?
Yes our laboratory is accredited by the NABL (National Accreditation Board of Testing and Calibration of Laboratories) India & College of American Pathologists (CAP). This accreditation process is carried out every 2 years for NABL & annually for CAP with periodic internal audits carried out twice in a year. All our aforementioned tests are accredited by NABL & CAP.
How should one send Histopathology/ Cytopathology/Immunohistochemistry samples? What are their prerequisites?
Please refer to this PDF for complete details
Do you supply bottles or jars with the fixative?
No we do not supply formalin jars , but if needed we share the protocol for preparation of 10% NBF. We provide LBC container for LBC PAP & Michel’s medium for IF testing testing and gluteraldehyde for electron microscopy.
What is the turn around time for surgical pathology specimens?
The average TAT for our specimens is 3 days for a small specimen and 5 days for a large specimen.
Please refer the EDOS for details.
Do you offer slide preparation and technical services?
Yes, Metropolis Laboratories provides histologic preparation and immunohistochemistry in addition to comprehensive diagnostic services. We have the staining without interpretation option for this purpose. The pathologist can select the marker of choice and we stain the slide and send it back for the pathologist to interpret it. We check the stain quality before dispatch. The stained slide is dispatched along with the paraffin block.
Do you offer a slide consultation service for second opinion?
Yes. Our specialists offer consultative services that provide guidance for additional diagnostic workup, prognostic information, pathogeneic insight, and therapeutic direction. Please forward the slides, previous surgical pathology reports and, if possible, the paraffin blocks, along with the request.
We at our centre also offer Expert opinion for the following subspecialities: Dermatopathology, Breast , Hematolymphoid, Gastrointestinal ,Hepatobiliary & Pediatric Pathology
How can I get my patients' results?
Reports can be delivered via fax, mail, courier, or via the Internet with our secure web-based application that allows physicians 24/7 access to laboratory reports.
The material received in the from of slides and blocks for IHC or second opinion is returned along with the report copy
Do you accept samples in mediums other than 10 % Neutral buffered formalin?
10 % NBF offers a good result for routine and ancillary tests and hence is the most widely used fixative worldwide. However, Bouin’s fluid may be used to fix testicular biopsies which are accepted by our laboratory.
Do you retain patient material? Can we obtain our material once it has been reported from your laboratory?
Yes, the patient’s slides and blocks are retained by the laboratory and safely stored in the safe house. However, if a patient requires that material for a second opinion or further treatment decisions these can be made available. The paraffin blocks prepared can be handed over to the patient/relatives after duly filling a form citing the details.
For more queries on any assistance on samples and reports, please call: 022- 30840791/774/772
Translational research is the basis for the testing performed at Metropolis Laboratories. We are committed to the adoption of the latest technologies in order to provide the highest quality and most cost-effective testing services to meet clinical needs. A reference lab needs have an exhaustive test menu and it is important to add new tests whenever there is a demand due to increased awareness. Some of these tests give an added value to the organization and an edge over the peer labs.
The R&D division plays a major role in fulfilling these ever growing demands by evaluating and coordinating the overall developmental activities related to new tests and technologies. We have the expertise to create, implement and validate clinical tests across a wide range of technologies, including PCR, Real Time PCR, and DNA Sequencing etc.
Our expertise includes:
The new test development procedure involves thorough literature search, technology evaluation, establishing a reference range if required and preparation of flyers and brochures to educate the doctors.
Two key features of the test developed at Metropolis are use of latest technology and cost effectiveness.
The team closely monitors the recent developments in the field of diagnostics and takes the charge of developing and eventually offering them to the patients.
R&D also plays a role in imparting the domain knowledge to the biotechnology students through training programs and projects.