Dr. Mitali Mukerji
Dr. Mitali Mukerji’s group works in the broad area of genome variations and its effect on human phenotypes and susceptibility to diseases. Primary aim is to develop methods using integrative genomics approaches for identifying markers that link to health and disease states. Using an Ayurgenomics approach, her team provided the first evidence for molecular correlates of Prakriti and demonstrated the applicability of this research in identifying a gene linked to high altitude adaptation.
Dr. Mukerji’s research focus is in three major thematic areas:
(1.) Ayurgenomics : Her group has been involved in developing a novel framework for stratified medicine using an integrative approach for identifying regulatory networks that link to physiomes. Diverse “omics” approaches with phenotyping principles of Ayurveda and objective measures from modern medicine are being integrated in this initiative. Primary aim is to develop an integrative system biology framework that would help apportion human genome variability into constituent axes that are linked to healthy and disease states.
(2.) Applicability of Indian Genome Variation project: Her group has been involved in the Indian Genome Variation Consortium (IGVC) project and carried out extensive studies on SNPs and CNVs in Indian populations and its comparison with world populations. Leads from IGVC project is being used by her group for tracing human migrations and history of diseases, identifying founders, human adaptations and developing genome based diagnostics primarily in the area of neurodegenerative disorders.
(3.) Functional annotation of Alu repeats in the human genome: Her group has shown that primate specific Alu repeats, are non-randomly distributed in the genome and transcriptome and can create novel transcriptional networks through diverse RNA mediated regulatory mechanisms. These functional elements are being mapped at the genome wide scale and their specific involvement in integrating stress signals to regulatory networks in being investigated.