Graduate Student Directory
Research Interests: Infection biology, immunology, and the host-pathogen interface
I was born and raised in the city of Pune in the Western part of India. When I was 15, I went to Hong Kong for a year as an exchange student. There, I was first exposed to the allure of biological research when I toured the labs in the University of Hong Kong – a rather long-lived infection.
I moved to the United States in 2009 to go to college at The Ohio State University where I majored in Microbiology. At OSU, I spent more than three years in the laboratory of Dr. Joanne Turner at the Center for Microbial Interface Biology studying the role that age-related inflammation plays in the innate immunity to Mycobacterium tuberculosis. I also spent a summer at the Ecole Polytechnique Federale de Lausanne in Switzerland, in Dr. Melanie Blokesch’s lab, studying the regulation of a certain extracellular nuclease by the bacterium Vibrio cholerae and basically having a great time (as seen in the picture). My undergraduate research experiences, coupled with my Indian background have made me aware of the threat that infectious diseases still pose to global health and have made me want to bunker down and try and get something done about them.
I decided to join the Department of Molecular Genetics and Microbiology at Duke because of the emphasis that the department puts on infection biology, the small, tight-knit, collaborative nature of the department and the vast diversity of scientific models employed to tackle various questions. I am currently rotating in the laboratory of Dr. David Tobin, studying the effect of the CRISPR/Cas mediated immune gene editing on zebrafish larvae infected with Mycobacterium marinum.
Outside of lab, I am a raging soccer fanatic – whether it be playing, talking about or watching my favorite team Arsenal. I also enjoy hiking, reading, good food, long discussions about history, and bad bad puns.
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