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Seminars and Colloquia


Intracellular Parasitism – Survival Strategies of a Cell inside a Cell 
Wed, Feb 21, 2018,   12:00 PM to 01:00 PM at Seminar Room 34, 2nd Floor, Main Building

Dr. Nishith Gupta
Humboldt University, Berlin

Infection, pathogenesis and inter-host transmission of microbial pathogens depend on their distinct abilities to switch the lifecycle stages and exploit host-cell resources. We are employing three complementary parasitic model protists, Toxoplasma, Eimeria and Plasmodium, which cause toxoplasmosis, diarrhea and malaria, respectively. They allow us to study not only the survival strategies of a eukaryotic cell inside another eukaryotic cell, but also the fascinating biology of their free-living ancestors. One of the major objectives in our group is to elucidate the impact of metabolism and signaling on the reproduction of these intracellular pathogens. Yet another thrust areas of research is to understand the evolution and quintessence of Warburg effect in parasitic protists. Our recent work has also integrated with system biology. Here, we plan to model the metabolism of proliferating cells (microbes and cancer cell) to discern the network design principles of proliferative metabolism in eukaryotic pathogens. Our research intimately blends bottom-up methods of biochemistry, reverse genetics and cell biology with top-down tools of lipidomics, metabolomics, transcriptomics, as well as with prevailing approaches involving optogenetics, high-resolution imaging, CRISPR/Cas9 and network modeling. In this seminar, I will be discussing how differential metabolic designs of intracellular parasites determine their survival and asexual reproduction in varied nutritional environments.