Amarnath Maitra did his BSc (Hons) in Chemistry (1962) from Ashutosh College, Kolkata and MSc (Chemistry) (1964) from Calcutta University. He then joined Jadavpur University, Kolkata and worked on Boron and Silicon Heterocycles under the supervision of Debabrata Sen to get the PhD degree in 1971. Subsequently, he joined as a Lecturer of Chemistry at Delhi University (1972). He was a post-doctoral Fellow of Indo-German Young Scientist Exchange Programme at the Technical University, Berlin under HG Feller and worked on Nickel passivation studies. He did his post-doctoral research (1978-80) under the supervision of G Hertz on NMR relaxation spectroscopy at the University of Karlsruhe and then at the University of Basel (1980) with HF Eicke. On returning to India (1982) he continued his teaching and research in Delhi University where he is presently an INSA Senior Scientist. He was a Visiting Professor at the University of Lund and at the University of Basel at the University of Florida.
Academic and Research Achievements: Professor Maitra taught in the Chemistry Department of Delhi University. While at Basel, he worked on structure and kinetics of microemulsions. From 1985 he started working on nanomaterials, particularly, gamma ferric oxides, barium ferrite nanocrystals, silver halides, etc. From 1995 he started working on polymeric and inorganic nanoparticles for drug delivery and gene delivery. Six of his patents on nanomedicine have been transferred to industry out of which one patent on ‘calcium phosphate based gene delivery’ has been transferred to a USA based pharmaceutical company (Abraxis Bioscience Inc). One Paclitaxel based technology has been further developed by Dabur Pharma Ltd through clinical trials and they have brought it to the market in the name of Nanoxel. He has 24 patents in his credit, which have been granted in India, USA, UK, Europe and Japan. He has supervised 37 PhD students and mentored a number of MPhil students and post-doctoral researchers.
Other Contributions: Maitra has been doing research on Cancer Nanotechnology and is associated with a number of pharmaceutical industries as adviser. He is working as Honorary Adviser for the MTech course on nanoscience and nanotechnology at the University of Delhi.