Dr. Parvathy Venugopal serves as Assistant Professor at the School of Biotechnology. She earned her PhD from Genetic Reproduction and Development Institute, France. Her PhD work contributed towards identification of new genes involved in epithelial growth and morphogenesis in Drosophila Melanogaster. She also worked with human embryonic stem cells in the laboratory of Dr. Maneesha Inamdar, JNCASR, India, where she contributed to the derivation and characterization of human embryonic stem cells and their differentiation into cardiomyocytes.
Genes that control epithelial growth and morphogenesis play an important role in normal and cancer development. An epithelial- mesenchymal transition (EMT) allows a polarized epithelial cell to undergo biochemical changes that allow it to assume a mesenchymal phenotype. EMT occurs during normal development and during tumor progression. What are the important differences between normal and pathophysiological EMT. Dr. Parvathy aims to understand the signaling machinery within the epithelial cells that coordinates EMT through studying the function of certain genes involved in epithelial growth and polarity in normal and cancer cells.