National Centre for Biological Sciences, Bangalore
Institute for Stem Cell Biology and Regenerative Medicine (inStem), Bangalore
As a graduate student in the laboratory of Prof Satyajit Mayor at the NCBS, I studied the actin driven active organization of plasma membrane molecules in nanoscale domains. My work was in close collaboration with soft matter physicist Prof. Madan Rao. The graduate years exposed me to a scientific milieu where the spirit of interrogation and experimentation is nurtured. Through interactions with the larger scientific community my research interests expanded beyond the subject of my PhD thesis. In the short stint as a postdoctoral fellow in Prof. Mayor’s laboratory, I started to explore the influence of extracellular matrix signals on the organization of membrane complexes through the regulation of the cytoskeleton. Those explorations fueled an interest to ask how cells in a tissue respond to external cues; how do they move to the right place at the right time by integrating such signals and coordinating their response. In the context of stem cells, this problem gets another interesting twist as these cells must reach their destination and differentiate into a specific cell type. How is the cell-fate switch coordinated with the directional migratory response? As an Early Career fellow, I am keen on answering these questions by studying the wound-induced stem cell mobilization process in the skin.