The Team



Principal Investigator

Dr Kavita Babu
kavita.babu [at] babulab [dot] org

Kavita Babu
Kavita was born in Bombay and grew up in Bombay and Bangalore. She completed her undergraduate degree in Physics, Chemistry and Mathematics, from St. Joseph's College, Bangalore. She then attended the MSc Biotechnology programme at The Maharaja Sayajirao University (MSU), Baroda but left midway to pursue her doctorate at Professor William Chia's laboratory at the Institute of Molecular and Cell Biology (IMCB, now IMCB-A*STAR), Singapore, King's College London (MRC Centre for Developmental Neurobiology), London and Temasek Life Sciences Laboratory. Kavita went on to do her Post-doctoral research at Professor Josh Kaplan's laboratory at the Massachusetts General Hospital (Department of Molecular Biology), Boston, MA. Subsequently, in August 2011, Kavita joined IISER, Mohali.

Upon setting up a worm lab in IISER Mohali campus in March 2013, Kavita and her group ask questions related to the role of Cell adhesion molecules and claudin-like molecules at the C. elegans neuromuscular junction. The group is also interested in studying aspects of neuropeptide functioning in circuits and how changes in neuropeptides and/or their receptors affect behaviour. 

Kavita was a Wellcome — DBT Intermediate Fellow and a recipient of the DBT-Innovative Young Biotechnologist Award.


Post Doctoral Research Associates

Pratima Sharma Pandey
Dr Pratima Pandey
pratima.sharma [at] babulab [dot] org

A native of Shimla, Himachal Pradesh (HP), Pratima obtained her B.Sc from St. Bede's College, HP. She then obtained a master's degree in Biotechnology from HP University, Shimla. Between 1999 and 2004 she worked on her Ph.D. at Professor Alok K. Mondal's laboratory at the Institute of Microbial Technology (IMTECH), Chandigarh. After completing her Ph.D., Pratima joined Dr. Lynn Boyd's laboratory at the University of Alabama, Huntsville, AL as a Post-doctoral fellow in 2005. In 2009, Pratima went on to pursue her research in Dr. Harbinder Dhillon's laboratory as a Post-doctoral Research Associate at the Delaware State University, Delaware, DE. Subsequently, in January 2012, Pratima joined IISER, Mohali

Pratima was a recipient of the DBT- Bio-CARe grant and is currently an IISER Mohali postdoctoral fellow.

Pratima is interested in studying the role of the C. elegans dopamine autoreceptor DOP-2. You can red Pratima's previous work on characterisation of mechanism of function of a cell adhesion molecule RIG-3 here.



Dr Yogesh Dahiya Yogesh Dahiya
yogesh.dahiya [at] babulab [dot] org

A native of Haryana, Yogesh obtained his B.Sc. from Kurukshetra University, Kurukshetra, Haryana. He then completed his Master's degree in Biochemistry from Banaras Hindu University (BHU), Varanasi and joined Professor Ajit Sodhi's laboratory at the School of Biotechnology, BHU to do his Ph.D.  Yogesh recieved two CSIR fellowships — Junior Research Fellowship (2007—2009) and Senior Research Fellowship (2009—2012) during the course of his PhD.

Yogesh was a recipient of the DBT post-doctoral fellowship and was  a Wellcome — DBT Early Career Fellow.

Yogesh is interested in understanding aspects of learning and memory in C. elegans.


Doctoral Candidates

Ashwani Bhardwaj Ashwani Bhardwaj
ashwani.bhardwaj [at] babulab [dot] org

A native of Bilaspur, Himachal Pradesh, Ashwani obtained his undergraduate degree in Biotechnology from DAV College Jalandhar, Punjab. He then completed his Master's degree in Biotechnology from DAV College, Chandigarh (Panjab University). 

Ashwani is the recipient of ICMR — Junior Research Fellowship (2012) and Senior Research Fellowship (2014). 

Ashwani is interested in studying the neural circuitry involved in movement in C. elegans. You can read Ashwani's paper from our lab here. Ashwani is currently in the final stretch of thesis submission before graduation.


Nagesh Kadam Nagesh Kadam
nagesh.kadam [at] babulab [dot] org

Nagesh is a native of Nanded, Maharashtra. He completed his undergraduate education at the N. E. S. Science College Nanded, receiving his degree in biotechnology from Swami Ramanand Tirth Marathwada University. He then went on to do his Master's degree in Biotechnology at the School of Life Sciences, Ramanand Tirth Marathwada University, Nanded.

Nagesh is a recipient of the UGC — Junior Research Fellowship (2013) and Senior Research Fellowship (2015).

Nagesh is interested in studying post-synaptic receptor function in C. elegans.



Vina Tikiyani
Vina Tikiyani
vina.tikiyani [at] babulab [dot] org

Vina hails from the "Pink City" — Jaipur, Rajasthan. She holds a Bachelor of Sciences degree in biotechnology from the Rajasthan University, Jaipur. She then obtained her master's degree in biotechnology from the University of North Bengal, Darjeeling. Vina has previously worked in other labs, including at the CSIR-Institute of Genomics and Integrative Biology


Vina is a recipient of the CSIR — Junior Research Fellowship (2014). 

Vina is interested in understanding the function of cell adhesion molecules, especially a class of four transmembrane domain molecules, called claudins, in synaptic function.

While away from the research bench Vina spends her time reading or playing badminton or chess.
Vina is currently in the final stretch of thesis submission and thesis defence,


Anuradha Singh

anuradha.singh [at] babulab [dot] org

Anuradha is a native of Kanpur, Uttar Pradesh. She graduated in Biotechnology from C.S.J.M., 
Kanpur University. She obtained her Masters degree in Molecular and Human Gentics from Banaras Hindu University (BHU), Varanasi.


Anuradha is a recipient of the UGC - Junior Research Fellowship (2015) and started in our lab in Jan 2016.




BS/MS Students

Sukanta Behera
sukanx1995 [at] gmail 
[dot] 
com


A KVPY fellow, Sukanta is currently working with Nagesh. He is looking at chemotaxis defects
in cell adhesion molecules. Sukanta is interested in the neural networks and dynamics and
plans to study the function of these networks in cognition. 
Sukanta is a College level Volleyball player and a part-time 
android porter.



Vandana Verma
vermavandana048 [at] gmail 
[dot] 
com


Vandana is a native of Alwar Rajastan. She joined the BS-MS programme at IISER Mohali in 2014 as a recipient of the INSPIRE scholarship of the INSPIRE SHE program. Vandana is working with Pratima for her final year thesis project in our lab. 






Alumni

PhD Students

Shruti Thapliyal
Shruti Thapliyal
shruti.thapliyal87 [at] gmail 
[dot] 
com

A native of Uttaranchal, Shruti grew up in Delhi. She completed her undergraduate degree in botany from Miranda HouseUniversity of Delhi. She went on to do her Masters in Biotechnology at Banasthali University, Rajasthan. 

Shruti is a recipient of the CSIR — Junior Research Fellowship (2011) and Senior Research Fellowship (2013).

Shruti's work in the Babu Lab led to a better understanding of the role of a Calsyntenin, CASY-1, at the C. elegans nervous system. You can read her papers from our lab here and here.

Shruti has moved on to do her postdoc at Lu Chen's lab in Stanford.

Pallavi Sharma
Pallavi Sharma
pallavi.sharma [at] babulab [dot] org

A native of Chamba, Himachal Pradesh, Pallavi obtained her undergraduate degree in Biotechnology from KMV College Jalandhar, Punjab. She then completed her Master's  degree in Biotechnology from National Centre for Human Genome Studies and Research (NCHGSR), Chandigarh (Punjab University). 


Pallavi is the recipient of ICMR — Junior Research Fellowship (2012) and Senior Research Fellowship (2014). 

Pallavi's work in the Babu lab led to the characterisation of the role of a  claudin-like molecule HPO-30 at the C. elegans neuromuscular junction. You can read Pallavi's paper from our lab here.


BS/MS Students
Saloni Rose
salonirose.95[at] gmail [dot] com
Saloni Rose joined BS-MS Program at IISER Mohali in 2013 as an INSPIRE 
fellow. She is originally from Kalpakkam, a small township near 
Chennai hosting a Nuclear Power Plant. For her Master's thesis, 
she is working on how transcription factors and associated molecules 
are involved in associative learning in C.elegans. More broadly, she 
wants to address how neural circuitries evolve and give rise to complex 
behaviours that involve learning with great degree of variability. 
She has accepted a doctoral position at University of Regensburg, 
Germany. Besides science, she is very passionate about badminton, 
travelling and gourmet food.

Shruthi Ravindranath
shruthi.ravindranath11[at] gmail [dot] com

Shruthi joined IISER Mohali in 2012 as an INSPIRE Fellow.
She is originally from Chennai, Tamil Nadu. Shruthi is interested
in understanding the causal relationship between neural circuits
and behaviour. She studied the circuit for locomotion in
C. elegans to understand how genes and proteins confer
functionality to a circuit that forms a building block for behaviour.
In her free time, she enjoys reading, swimming, playing music and
exploring culinary culture. Shruthi is now a doctoral candidate at Princeton University and a recipient of the university's 'Centennial Fellowship in Natural Science and Engineering'. 
You can read the paper that Shruthi contributed to from our lab 
.


Mohan Lal
mohanlal316[at] gmail [dot] com

Mohan, a native of Udhampur, Jammu and Kashmir,
joined IISER Mohali as an INSPIRE Fellow in August 2012. For his final year thesis, Mohan studied the properties of neural circuits involved in controlling the locomotion of C. elegans. Mohan is currently pursuing his doctoral studies in the Department of Physical Sciences at IISER Mohali.







Diwakar Maraina
diwakarmaraina[at] gmail [dot] com

Diwakar is a native of Baijnath, Himachal Pradesh.
He joined IISER Mohali as an INSPIRE Fellow in August 2012. Diwakar worked on understanding the role of 
Claudins and how they function 
in the C. elegans nervous system.



Maruthi Prasad
mimpatp[at] gmail [dot] com
 
          
Maruthi is a native of Madurai in Tamil Nadu, from where he completed his
primary education. Maruthi joined IISER Mohali in August 2012 as an
INSPIRE fellow, Maruthi worked on a project with Yogesh to
 understand how transcription factors are involved 
in memory formation and learning in C. elegans. Maruthi is currently a doctoral candidate at the University of Iowa. 


   
                                                                              

Saurabh Thapliyal (Saurabh graduated in 2016, and was a JRF in the lab for a few months)
saurabh.iiser[at] gmail [dot] com


                                                 Aiswarya Joy
joymaiswarya[at] gmail [dot] com

Aiswarya, a native of Cochin, Kerala, joined IISER Mohali in 
August 2011 as an INSPIRE fellow. She completed her
final year thesis in the lab.


  Shiji L.V.
shijiviswambharan [at] gmail [dot] com

Shiji is a native of the Trivandrum (Thiruvananthapuram). She joined IISER Mohali in 2010 as an INSPIRE Fellow and pursued her final year BS/MS project in our lab. 


Ane Nishitha
nishitha5293 [at] gmail [dot] com

Ane is a native of the Kanyakumari in Tamil Nadu. She joined IISER Mohali in 2010 as an INSPIRE Fellow and pursued her final year BS/MS project with us in collaboration with Dr. Shravan Kumar Mishra Laboratory.    





Kuldeep Tomar















Kuldeep Tomar
tomarkuldeep39 [at] gmail [dot] com

Kuldeep was a senior undergraduate student at IISER Mohali, where he joined in July 2009, as an INSPIRE  fellow, after completing his schooling from Dehradun. Kuldeep
was interested in studying the role of morphogens in synapse development and function. More specifically, Kuldeep was involved in understanding the role of TGFb family of morphogens at the C. elegans nervous system. Kuldeep graduated from IISER Mohali in 2014. 
Kuldeep has graduated with a degree in management from IIM Calcutta


Shivam Bhardwaj
Shivam Bhardwaj
shivambhardwaj [at] hotmail [dot] com

Shivam was a senior undergraduate student and IISER Mohali where he joined in July 2008, as a KVPY scholar, after completing his schooling from Patna. Shivam worked on setting up assays that would help identifying molecules involved in memory formation.
He graduated from IISER Mohali in 2013. Shivam is currently a PhD student at National University of Singapore. 


Junior Research Fellows


 Ambey Dwivedi
 ambeydwivedi [at] gmail [dot] com

Ambey is a native of the Cultural Capital of India, Banaras (Kashi), Uttar Pradesh. He completed his undergraduate education at the Banaras Hindu University, with an honours in Chemistry. After his Undergraduate degree, he went on to do his Masters in Biotechnology from IIT, Bombay (Mumbai). Ambey is GATE and CSIR-UGC NET qualified. Ambey spent a year getting hand-on experience in Neurobiology before starting his PhD.
Ambey is currently pursuing his PhD at CDFD, Hyderabad.
Saurabh, a native of Karanprayag, Uttarakhand. He joined IISER as
an INSPIRE fellow in August 2011. In his final year thesis project he 
worked on understanding the neural circuitry of C. elegans. Saurabh is currently pursuing his doctoral studies at University of Fribourg in Switzerland.
You can read the paper that Saurabh contributed to here.