Ph.D. Molecular Microbiology, University of Delhi, Delhi, India
Title:“The Haloalkane Dehalogenase LinB is Responsible for b- and d Hexachlorocyclohexane Transformation in Sphingobium indicum B90A and Mobilization of lin genes in a Non Hexachlorocyclohexane Degrader Sphingobium chlorophenolicum DSM 7098T”
M.Sc. Cell Biology, University of Delhi, Delhi, India
B.Sc. Zoology (Hons, University of Delhi, Delhi, India
Best poster awards given by American Society of Microbiology on a paper entitled “Localization of lin genes and IS6100 on plasmids in HCH-degrading Sphingobium indicum B90A, Sphingobium japonicum UT26, Sphingobium francense Sp+ and transposition of IS6100 in Sphingobium chlorophenolicum DSM 7098” at the 46th Annual Conference of AMI “Micro-Biotech 2005” held during December 8 – 10, 2005, at Hyderabad, India.
Received Council of Scientific and Industrial Research- Senior Research Fellowship (CSIR-SRF) in Life Sciences (2004).
Awarded Council of Scientific and Industrial Research-Junior Research Fellowship (CSIR-JRF) in Life Sciences (2002).
Qualified Council of Scientific and Industrial Research-University Grants Commission (CSIR-UGC) National Eligibility for Lectureship Test (NET), June 2001.
Selected among top 20% Junior Research Fellows in 2001-2002
Qualified ICMR - JRF Year 2001
Got National Award for Advance Studies 2000 during M.Sc.
Topped during B.Sc (Hons) at college.
WORKSHOPS, SYMPOSIUM AND COMPETETIONS ATTENDED
Participated in 49th Annual Conference of AMI held during Nov. 18 – 20, 2008, at Delhi University, Delhi, India.
Participated in 46th Annual Conference of AMI “Micro-Biotech 2005” held during Dec. 8 – 10, 2005, at Hyderabad, India.
Participated in the International Conference, “Bioconvergence 2004” held during 18-20 November 2004 at TIET, Patiala, India.
Participated in the International symposium on “Biological Approaches for Detection and Removal of Pesticides” under the Indo-Swiss Collaboration in Biotechnology at Agharkar Research Institute, March 8-9, Pune 2004, India.
Mini Symposium on “Utilization of Microbes for the Development of Bioremediation Technologies” organized and held in Department of Zoology, University of Delhi, Delhi and sponsored by SDC, Switzerland and DBT, India (October 7-8, 2002).
Attended and participated in Quiz and M.CQ competition at Sri Aurobindo College (Zoology Society), D.U (Inter-College Competition 1999).
POSTER/ ORAL PRESENTATIONS
Poster presentation (2006) “Genes Responsible for Degradation of b- and d-Hexachlorocyclohexane (HCH) in Sphingobium indicum B90A”. Vishakha Raina, Poonam Sharma, Christoph Werlen, Hans-Rudolf Buser, Christof Holliger and Hans-Peter E. Kohler at Leipzig Conference, Germany
Participated in 46th Annual Conference of AMI “Micro-Biotech 2005” held during December 8 – 10, 2005, Hyderabad, India and made a Poster presentation.
Participated in the International Conference, “Bioconvergence 2004” held during 18-20 November 2004 and made a Poster presentation.
Participated in the International symposium on “Biological Approaches for Detection and Removal of Pesticides” under the Indo-Swiss Collaboration in Biotechnology at Agharkar Research Institute, March 8-9, Pune, India and made an Oral presentation.
RESEARCH & REVIEW ARTICLES
Raina V., Rentsch D, Geiger T, Sharma P, Buser HR, Holliger C, Lal R, Kohler HP 2008. New Metabolites in the Degradation of alpha- and gamma-Hexachlorocyclohexane (HCH): Pentachlorocyclohexenes Are Hydroxylated to Cyclohexenols and Cyclohexenediols by the Haloalkane Dehalogenase LinB from Sphingobium indicum B90A. Journal of Agricultural Food Chemistry 2008 Aug 13; 56(15):6594-603
Raina V., Hauser A, Buser HR, Rentsch D, Sharma, P, Lal R, Holliger C, Poiger JT, Müller MD, Kohler HP 2007. Hydroxylated metabolites of beta- and delta-hexachlorocyclohexane: bacterial formation, stereochemical configuration, and occurrence in groundwater at a former production site. Environmental Science Technology 2007 Jun 15; 41(12):4292-8.
Lal, R., Jit, S., Verma, M., Dadhwal., M., Singh, A., Prakash, O., Sharma, P and Khanna, M. 2006. Nanoorganisms: Smallest form of Life got smaller! (Research News). Indian Journal of Microbiol. 46: 413.
Sharma, P., Raina, V., Kumari, R., Malhotra, S., Dogra, C., Kumari, H., Kohler, H.P E., Buser, H.R., Holliger, C and Lal, R. 2006. Haloalkane Dehalogenase (LinB) is responsible for b- and d-HCH (Hexachlorocyclohexane) transformation in Sphingobium indicum B90A. Applied Environmental Microbiology 2006 Sep; 72(9):5720-7.
Lal, R., Dogra, C., Malhotra, S., Sharma, P. and Pal, R. 2006. Recent advances in Microbiological, Molecular Genetics and Evolutionary aspects of Hexachlorocyclohexane degradation in Sphingomonads. Trends in Biotechnology. Mar; 24(3):121-30.
Dhingra, G., Kumari, RM., Bala, S., Sharma, P., Lal, S., Cullum, J. and Lal, R. 2003. Development of cloning vectors and transformation system for Amycolatopsis. Journal of Industrial Microbiology and Biotechnology. 30:195-204, Springer Verlag Heidelberg, Germany.
Worked as a trainee for six months in the Dr. H.P. Kohler’s laboratory (2 March, 2006 - 30 August, 2006) at Swiss Federal Institute for Environmental Science and Technology (EAWAG), Dubendorf, Switzerland in the project entitled “Bioremediation of pesticide-contaminating soils and its effect on soil functionality” under the “Indo-Swiss Collaboration in Biotechnology” (ISCB). During this training, I got an opportunity to learn many biochemistry techniques like NMR, GC-MS etc. which helped in making some good publications.
Microbiology: All basic techniques, including staining, isolation, characterization and preservation of bacterial strains, chemical mutagenesis, resting cell studies. Molecular biology: Isolation and purification of chromosomal and plasmid DNA from different gram positive and gram negative bacterial strains, DNA isolation from soils and sediments, restriction digestion and cloning, DNA electrophoresis, electroporation and chemical transformation in bacteria, polymerase chain reaction (PCR), colony hybridization, southern hybridization, transposon mutagenesis. Analytical techniques: Solvent extraction of metabolites, thin layer chromatography (TLC), gas chromatography (GC), GC-MS and NMR. Protein analysis: Recombinant protein expression, analysis of protein on SDS-PAGE and protein kinetics.
Knowledge of packages used for scientific purposes like TREECON, CLUSTALX, CHEM WINDOWS for drawing chemical structures of various compounds, CLONE MANAGER for making restriction maps of DNA fragments and plasmids, and GENE RUNNER and DNASIS for analysis of DNA fragment, sequence deduction, homology searches, ORF analysis and designing of primers particularly for PCR amplification. Have experience of handling photo imaging and scanning systems and retrieval of data from instruments linked to computer. Working knowledge of ADOBE PAGE MAKER 6.5, MS-OFFICE, MS-WINDOWS (MS-WORD, MS-EXCEL, MS-POWER POINT, CORAL DRAW PHOTOSHOP etc.)
During my Ph.D. tenure I worked on various aspects of molecular microbiology. The major work was on HCH degradation where we have not only cloned genes, characterized and purified the gene products but also isolated and identified the metabolites produced by the most recalcitrant beta- and delta-HCH isomers. While doing this work, I not only learned the techniques involved in molecular biology and over expression and purification of proteins and studying the kinetics but also the various biochemistry techniques like GC, GC-MS, TLC and NMR. I also worked on another aspect “the mobilization of lin genes involved in HCH degradation pathway to a Non HCH degrader, Sphingobium chlorophenolicum DSM 7098T”. This work involves the construction of transposon cassettes, their introduction in the new host, screening of the transformants by southern hybridization and checking the activity of the introduced gene in these transformants. I am now looking forward to take up the job where I would be able to use my practical skills of molecular biology and theoretical knowledge. Research areas of my interest are Microbial genetics, physiology and metabolism, Xenobiotic degradation, Metagenomics, Microbial Ecology and Bacterial Systematic. I am sincerely interested in learning and implementing new methods, techniques and innovative ideas pertaining to microbiological research and also have a keen desire to explore the microbial diversity in terms of Structural and Functional Relationship.