RESEARCH WORK @ CILIATE BIOLOGY LABORATORIES IN UNIVERSITY OF DELHI
Team Members (Presently Working)
Dr. Komal Kamra(Associate Professor)
Dr. Renu Gupta (Assistant Professor)
Dr. Seema Makhija (Associate Professor)
Dr. Ravi Toteja (Associate Professor)
Dr. Santosh Kumar (Research Associate, on Assignment in Korea)
Dr. Jasbir Singh (Assistant Professor)
Ms. Jeeva Susan Abraham1 (Research Scholar)
Ms. S. Sripoorna (Research Scholar)
Ms. Harpreet Kaur (Research Scholar)
Affiliations Acharya Narendra Dev College, University of Delhi.
Maitreyi College, University of Delhi.
S.G.T.B. Khalsa College, University of Delhi
Heavy metal induced oxidative stress response in spirotrich ciliates
Heavy metal pollution of water is of major concern these days especially in developing countries like India. Anthropogenic sources, mainly mining and industrial activities, have contributed to substantial increase in heavy metal content in air and in many terrestrial and aquatic ecosystems. About 85 percent of the water pollution is caused by domestic and industrial sources. A wide range of contaminants are continuously introduced into the water and among these contaminants, heavy metals due to their toxicity, accumulation and non-degradable nature, constitute one of the most dangerous groups. Prolonged exposure to heavy metals such as cadmium, copper, lead and zinc disturb normal biological function and evoke cellular stress response. The research interest of our group is to examine how spirotrich ciliates respond to metal stress and to see the expression of heat shock proteins, metallothioneins and glutathione peroxidase gene under heavy metal stress.. Moreover, the transcriptional activity of these genes are studied following heavy metals stress. The change in transcriptional activity can be used as a biomarker for monitoring the pollution level. Cellular response to heavy metals may also leads to generation of reactive oxygen species (ROS) which can be used as a tool in using whole cell ciliate as biosensor.
Biodiversity of spirotrich ciliates
We are also focusing on taxonomic description of freshwater ciliates by using morphological and molecular markers. We isolate and identify the ciliates from freshwater source in and around Delhi by studying its morphology, morphogenetic stages and using molecular markers like 18S rRNA gene, ITS1 and 2, histone gene etc. Extremophilic ciliates have been catalogued from a wide variety of regions such as hot water springs, caves, high altitudes etc. Ciliate communities have also been described from Biodiversity Hotspots such as Silent Valley Bioreserve and Eastern Himalayas. These have paid rich dividends in terms of endemism and distribution patterns. Fresh Water ciliate communities as bio-indicators of water pollution One of the present assignments deals with physic-chemical analyses of water and correlation with ciliate communities in water sources around the National Capital region.
Assessment of soil quality by using ciliates as bio-indicators
In our laboratory, presently ten undergraduate students are also working under DU-innovation project (AND-303). They are studying physico-chemical and biological analysis of soil samples collected from various regions in Delhi to assess the soil quality of these areas. Physico-chemical analysis of soil involves determination of soil texture, water holding capacity, pH, conductivity, nitrogen content, carbon content etc. and biological analysis involves identification of soil ciliates by live cell observations and staining techniques. The objective of this investigation
Projects for Undergraduates Funded by Acharya Narendra Dev College
The Ciliate Biology Lab at SGTB Khalsa College has been in a collaborator with University of Camerino, Italy; one doctoral fellow, one post-doctoral fellow, one student for Ph. D. programme completed at University of Camerino under the collaboration
Komal Kamra is one of the collaborators of International Research Coordination Network for Biodiversity of Ciliates (RCN-BC) funded by National Science Foundation, USA
The group has an on-going association with Dr Alan Warren, Senior Scientist, Natural History Museum, London
The group organised
International Symposium on Ciliate Biology February 6-7, 2007
Report published in Protist 2007
The group co-organized
The Second Asian Congress of Protistology and Ninth Conference on Ciliate Biology
November 27-29, 2014
University of Kalyani, Kalyani, West Bengal, India
Title of Thesis of Dr Santosh Kumar
DIVERSITY AND ECOLOGY OF CILIATED PROTOZOA FROM SELECT BIOTOPES, AND A RECOMBINANT CELL LINE OF Tetrahymena thermophila AS POTENTIAL MODEL FOR TOXICOLOGICAL ASSAYS
Title of Thesis of Dr Jasbir Singh
CILIATED PROTISTS FROM SIKKIM, A BIODIVERSITY HOTSPOT; DESCRIPTIONS OF SOME CILIATE TAXA WITH PHYLOGENETIC NOTES USING CLASSICAL AND MOLECULAR METHODS
The Ciliate Biology Lab in SGTB Khalsa College has since expanded into a Microbiology Unit with work on Prokaryotes. This included a review on H7 N9 virus. On-going work on extremophilic bacteria from bio-films, their characterization by classical and molecular methods is paying rich dividends. Study is also under way to assess correlation of fresh water ciliate community with physico-chemical parameters.