About Fellow

National Centre for Biological Sciences, Bangalore

St.John's Medical College, Bangalore

University of Cambridge, UK
The Babraham Institute, UK
National Centre for Biological Sciences, India

National Centre for Biological Sciences, Bangalore

I graduated with a degree in clinical medicine from St. John’s Medical College, Bangalore. While listening to a first year lecture on endocrinology by an influential teacher and physiologist Prakash Shetty, I became interested in the process of discovery in basic science and its importance to the scientific basis of clinical medicine. In particular, I was attracted to the mechanism by which hormones influence cellular processes, an interest that continues to this day.  This encounter influenced me decision to pursue a career in basic research; it was not a strategically planned career move.

I started a Ph.D degree at the then newly formed National Centre for Biological Sciences in Bangalore.  NCBS-TIFR had a long tradition of using genetic models to study processes in biology; I worked on the control of intracellular calcium signalling in Drosophila with Gaiti Hasan. During the latter part of my Ph.D, I was introduced to Roger Hardie in Cambridge whose work had been key to the discovery of TRP ion channel family. At the time, the role of intracellular Ca2+ store depletion in TRP channel activation was an unresolved and we worked together to show that Drosophila TRP channels were not store-operated channels.  I went on to do a post-doc with Roger and during this time we discovered the potential of lipid second messengers in regulating TRP channel function.

Subsequently, I became an independent principal investigator supported initially by a BBSRC David Phillips Fellowship (similar to an Alliance Intermediate Fellow) and lead a research group in Cambridge for ten years. During this time our lab discovered several novel (unexpected) elements of the biochemical machinery that controls lipid signalling in eukaryotic cells. In 2010 I moved to NCBS-TIFR; we continue to work on the layers of sophistication and beauty in how cells process information as they go about their daily existence.