Research Interest

Toxic and beneficial outcomes of protein aggregation inside cells

The specific questions include:

  • Proteostatic control on protein-complex biogenesis!!
  • Cellular response to protein aggregation!!

  • With the increasing life expectancy, developing effective treatments for numerous degenerative, age-related diseases becomes of enormous medical, social and economic relevance. Hence, research on cellular and organismal aging is now the focus of several leading laboratories and has provided different hypotheses about the causes of aging. One prominent hypothesis suggests that a gradual, age-dependent decline of protein homeostasis (proteostasis) accompanied by increasing protein-aggregation is the underlying cause of many age-related loss-of-function diseases. In our lab we perform systemic analysis of protein-aggregation in age-related proteostasis stress models. We are interested to identify the response of the cellular proteome against the newly triggered aggregates due to various stresses. Simultaneously, we investigate how components of the proteostasis network, including molecular chaperones, degradation machinery and others collaborate to maintain the integrity of the proteome in the face of protein-aggregation stresses.

    We use modern cell biology and state-of-the-art proteomics arsenal to address our questions.

    In addition to basic research programs, we also perform plasma proteome analysis of Sickle Cell Anaemia patients to identify diagnostic and prognostic biomarkers in Indian population. We are also involved in the “Phenome India-CSIR Health Cohort Knowledgebase” project and aim to generate data on plasma proteomic and metabolomic variables linked with chronic lifestyle diseases in Indian population.

    • September/2022: Research paper entitled "Rapid and deep plasma proteomics workflows for robust identification and quantification of biomarkers of sickle cell anaemia." published in J Proteins Proteom.
    • June/2022: Research paper entitled "Stress responses elicited by misfolded proteins targeted to mitochondria." published in J Mol Biol.
    • September/2020: Shivali's 'First Person' interview published in Journal of Cell Science.
    • September/2020: Research paper entitled "Increased supraorganization of respiratory complexes is a dynamic multistep remodelling in response to proteostasis stress." published in Journal of Cell Science.
    • January/2020: Swasti elected as the treasurer of Ptoteomics Society, India.
    • Jun/2019: Research paper entitled "Cytoplasmic sequestration of the RhoA effector mDiaphanous1 by Prohibitin2 promotes muscle differentiation." published online in Scientific Reports.
    • Jan/2019: Research paper entitled "Aggregation of Respiratory Complex Subunits Marks the Onset of Proteotoxicity in Proteasome Inhibited Cells" published online in J Mol Biol.
    • Nov/2018: Research paper entitled "Identification of a splice variant of optineurin which is defective in autophagy and phosphorylation" published online in Biochim Biophys Acta Mol Cell Res.
    • 23/08/2018:Appointed as coordinator of Proteomics facility management committee at CSIR-CCMB.
    • 01/07/2014: Research paper entitled "Conserved C-terminal nascent peptide binding domain of HYPK facilitates its chaperone-like activity" published online in Journal of Biosciences.
    • 27/02/2014: Research paper entitled "Interplay of Acetyltransferase EP300 and the Proteasome System in Regulating Heat Shock Transcription Factor 1" published in Cell.
    • 25/02/2014: Appointed as Head of a Max Planck Partner Group at CSIR-CCMB by Max Planck Society.
    • 04/11/2013: We started at CSIR-CCMB with DBT-Ramalingaswami Fellowship.

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