Seminar on "Genomics, post-genomics... and back to the basics"
Date: 13 July, 2017
Time: 15:30 - 16:30
Venue: Main Building Lecture Room - G1
Coordinator: Prof. Jyotsna Vijapurkar
Speaker: Dr. Aswin Sai Narain Seshasayee, NCBS, Bangalore,
The human genome project has made us believe in our ability to understand human biology - without recourse to extrapolation from genetic and biochemical studies of model systems - and rationally treat diseases. Much progress has been made. But along the way, genomics has made model organisms better. We have along the way come to realise that knowing the parts list of a cell is not sufficient, and good old genetics, biochemistry and model organisms cannot be dispensed with. Much of our undergraduate education in biology, on the other hand, has jumped on the bandwagon, laying much emphasis on keywords pertinent to the genomic era, but forgetting the fundamentals. In my talk, I will give an overview of our research that exploits genomic technologies to understand the biology of a humble model organism, the bacterium E. coli. I will also discuss how early studies of E. coli and its predators enabled molecular biology some 80 years ago, and how revisiting this landmark research will be a great service to biology education in the country.
About the speaker:
Dr. Aswin did a B. Tech in Industrial Biotechnology at Anna University, Chennai. He then went to the EMBL-European Bioinformatics Institute as a project student with Nicholas Luscombe in 2005. He continued his work in computational biology of microbial adaptation through a PhD in the same lab, affiliated to the University of Cambridge, between 2006 and 2009. He returned to India as a Young Investigator at NCBS-TIFR towards the end of 2010, where he runs a laboratory, comprising primarily PhD students, that performs genome scale experimental and computational studies of bacterial adaptation.