Biomolecular Engineering Research Group

Research interests:

Engineering of Wnt and Notch signaling pathways for conversion of embryonic stem cells to kidney tissue

  • Kidneys filter the blood and remove toxins. The prevalence of end-stage kidney disease is increasing in India, with patients requiring kidney transplant. However, there is shortage of kidneys for kidney transplant. An alternative is to make kidney tissue in the lab from embryonic stem cells.

  • Currently, methods are available for making kidney tissue from embryonic stem cells. However, they produce kidney tissue that is not suitable for engraftment.

  • To address this challenge, it is important to engineer the signaling pathways that lead to kidney tissue formation, such as the Wnt and Notch signaling pathways.

Scale-up of kidney tissue production in a bioreactor

  • Kidneys are made of about a million nephrons, which arise from nephron progenitor cells.

  • Currently, nephron progenitor cells can be made from embryonic stem cells. However, scale-up of this process is required and has not been achieved.

  • To address this challenge, it is important to optimize the process parameters leading to scale-up of production of nephron progenitor cells.