NIAS Wednesday Discussion on “Chikungunya Fever and a Possible Intervention for its Treatment” by Dr. Tuleshwori Sapam
NIAS Wednesday Discussion
Topic: ‘Chikungunya Fever and a possible intervention for its treatment'
Speaker: Tuleshwori Sapam
Post-Doctoral Associate, School of Natural Sciences and Engineering, NIAS
Chairperson: Anindya Sinha
Professor, School of Natural Sciences & Engineering, NIAS
Date: 19th February 2020
Time: 4.00 PM
Venue: Lecture Hall, NIAS
All are cordially invited
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Abstract: The biological functions of any organism is controlled and maintained by its genetic makeup. The genetic repository of each organism is known as the genome of the organism, and the interdisciplinary field that deal with understanding the relationship between biological function and genome is known as genomics. Chemically, the genome of each organism is a polymeric compound called as nucleic acid (DNA or RNA), formed by linear linkage of four types of nitrogenous bases, namely adenine, thymine (uracil for RNA), cytosine and guanine. All differences between organisms is due to differences in the sequence of bases in their respective genomes. A gene is a segment of this linear polymer, and information encoded in it is converted into a functional product called as protein, through an intermediate molecule known as messenger RNA or mRNA. These important biological molecules have definite three-dimensional structures which govern their functions. Recent developments of high-throughput sequencing and computational technologies have led to comparative genome analyses, thereby catalyzing the understanding of several human diseases at the molecular level. Such knowledge is expected to aid in the rapid development of effective and non-toxic medicines for health care. We are applying these technologies to the human epidemic disease, chikungunya fever, the symptoms and after-effects of which include unbearable joint pain. This disease is prevalent in many parts of India and is caused by chikungunya virus (CHIKV). A significant feature in the life cycle of CHIKV is that it critically depends on the phenomenon of stop codon read-through mechanism, for its propagation. Hence, in our current study, we are trying to understand the mechanisms of this translational read-through in CHIKV. The factors associated with this process represent a potential underexploited target for providing antiviral intervention. Thus, genomics studies and molecular modelling experiments will be incorporated in our study to explore the mechanisms and fill-in the gaps for providing specific antiviral therapy against chikungunya fever.
About the speaker: Tuleshwori Sapam is working as Post-Doctoral Associate under the guidance of Prof..M.V.Hosur at NIAS. She finished her PhD in Bioinformatics from Centre of Bioinformatics, Pondicherry University.