Group news!

August 2018: Chemistry Ph.D. students, Dastgir and Mudassir, and 5th yr BS-MS project student, Govind join the group.
August 2018: Dimpy presents an invited talk entitled "Exocyclic olefinic maleimides - From stable bioconjugation to N-terminal protein modification" at the Chemical Frontiers meeting held at Goa.
July 2018: Dimpy presents an invited talk entitled "Efficacious approaches for stable thiol bioconjugation" at the 23rd CRSI National Symposium in Chemistry held at IISER Bhopal.
May-July 2018: BS-MS students, Tarun Jaiswal and Shubham Patil perform summer projects in the lab.
April 2018: Sangeeta Parmar joins the group as a project JRF.
January 2018: Dimpy moves to the Department of Chemistry at IISER Bhopal from Savitribai Phule Pune University.
September 2017: Dimpy presents an invited talk on the group's work on "Endowing stability to thio-maleimide protein bioconjugates" at the 7th Chemical Protein Synthesis Meeting held at Haifa, Israel (list of invited speakers:
December 2016: Our work on stable and rapid thiol bioconjugation via light-triggered thiomaleimide ring hydrolysis is accepted in Angew. Chem. Link:
November 2015: Our work on the synthesis of exocyclic olefinic maleimides and their use for bioconjugation is accepted in Angew. Chem. as a Very Important Paper (VIP). Link:

Welcome! Our research is focused on both pure organic synthesis and its combination with protein chemistry and bacterial assays for bioconjugation and chemical biology-based applications. Our three main research areas are: developing facile approaches of protein bioconjugation, chemical biology of c-di-GMP signaling in bacteria, and developing new concise methods for the synthesis of complex heterocyclic small molecules.

 Area 1: Bioconjugation

The development of organic reactions that can proceed under physiological conditions (in aqueous solutions at room temperature near neutral pH) have revolutionized both applied and basic biological research. These reactions have enabled the site-specific attachment of fluorophores and affinity tags to biomolecules (proteins, DNA, RNA, carbohydrates and lipids) enabling cellular imaging and pull down-based studies that have contributed tremendously towards elucidation of their roles in diverse biological processes. In addition to fundamental research, these biocompatible organic reactions have enabled the development of novel therapeutic strategies including antibody-drug conjugates (ADCs) for cancer therapy wherein tumor marker-targeting antibody proteins are site-specifically conjugated to cytotoxic anticancer agents. A major focus of our research is to develop new approaches for facile bioconjugation of proteins that proceed rapidly to form stable linkages. Bioconjugation projects in our group combine organic synthesis and protein chemistry.
Area 2: Chemical Biology of c-di-GMP signaling in bacteria

Antibiotic-resistant bacterial strains are wreaking havoc on mankind. Indeed, the World Health Organization recently named drug-resistant bacteria as one of the top three global threats to human health. A major reason for the development of bacterial resistance towards traditional antibiotics is that these drugs act by targeting essential bacterial cellular processes which imposes selective pressure on bacteria to evolve drug resistant strains. A promising alternative approach that would impose significantly lesser evolutionary pressure for the creation of resistant strains entails targeting bacterial virulence and regulatory pathways, rather than bacterial growth. A recently discovered signaling system orchestrated by the bacterial secondary messenger, c-di-GMP, is an attractive regulatory mechanism to target as it plays a key role in infection by regulating the formation of bacterial biofilms—complex extracellular matrices that endow bacteria with increased antibiotic tolerance (to levels ~1000-fold greater than those observed in planktonic bacteria). We are designing and testing rationally-designed libraries of small organic compounds as inhibitors of c-di-GMP signaling in bacteria and are also developing chemical tools for studying c-di-GMP signaling in bacteria.
Area 3: Concise routes to complex heterocycles 
Substituted heterocycles display rich pharmacological profiles and biological activities, and are therefore attractive scaffolds for drug design. We are developing facile routes for the synthesis of polysubstituted derivatives of heterocycles such as pyrazoles, oxazoles, and piperidines.