Faculty Directory

Dr. Sharmistha Sinha

(Associate Professor, Scientist-E, Head of the Unit)

In our laboratory, we explore the molecular confinement and self-assembly of biomaterials towards understanding the structure-assembly relationship in bacterial microcompartments. These studies will help the design and bioengineering of novel smart hybrid nano-bioreactors. Further, we are also interested in understanding protein and small-molecule assembly principles in cancer progression and management.   Do visit our Research page for exciting updates!


Research Interest

  • Protein Self Assembly and Disease Progression.
  • Molecular Confinement and SAR in Prokaryotic Organelles.
  • Novel Functional Organic-Inorganic Hybrid Materials.

Research Highlights

  • Variable Mutations at the p53-R273 Oncogenic Hotspot Position Leads to Altered Properties

    This work stems from an interesting observation that genetic mutations result in the switching of one amino acid to different variants at the same codon show different cancer pathogenesis. We are trying to comprehend the molecular mechanism for the variation in gain-of-function opted by these variants. Several complementary experiments aided with computational studies show that residue-specific mechanism of unfolding and self-assembly of the entire protein might be one of the crucial parameters for their different oncogenic traits. These studies thus call for the need for developing therapeutic strategies that consider the resultant mutant-variant as a target rather than a mutation position. This is an important lead towards the understanding of the molecular contribution of p53 mutant aggregation in cancer.

    (Biophys. J. Volume 118, Issue 3, 2020, Pages 720-728, https://doi.org/10.1016/j.bpj.2019.12.015 )

PhD Students

  • MR. S M ROSE

    Email: smrose.ph21234@inst.ac.in

    Reg. No.: PH21234

    Working Since Jan, 2022

    Email: aarcha.ph21202@inst.ac.in

    Reg. No.: PH21202

    Working Since Aug, 2021

    Email: preeti.ph20209@inst.ac.in

    Reg. No.: PH20209

    Working Since Aug, 2020

    Email: dimple.ph20210@inst.ac.in

    Reg. No.: PH20210

    Working Since Aug, 2020
  • Ms.Simerpreet Kaur

    Email: simerpreet.ph17224@inst.ac.in

    Reg. No.: PH17224

    Working Since Jan, 2018
  • Ms. Harpreet Kaur

    Email: harpreet.ph19201@inst.ac.in

    Reg. No.: PH19201

    Working Since Aug, 2019
  • Mr. Gaurav Kumar

    Email: gaurav.phd17202@inst.ac.in

    Reg. No.: Ph17202

    Working Since Aug, 2017
  • Ms. Silky

    Email: silky.ph19202@inst.ac.in

    Reg. No.: PH19202

    Working Since Aug, 2019

PhD Students

  • Ms. Ankush Garg

    Email: ankush@inst.ac.in

    Reg. No.: PH15206

  • Mr. Naimat Kalim Bari

    Email: barinaimat@gmail.com

    Reg. No.: PH14210

  1. Varying protein architectures in 3-dimensions for scaffolding and modulating properties of catalytic gold nanoparticles: Simerpreet Kaur,Naimat K Bari,Sharmistha Sinha, (2022) Amino Acids, Just accepted: Just accepted. DOI: 10.1007/s00726-022-03127-7

  2. Doxorubicin induced aggregation of α-synuclein: Insights into the mechanism of drug induced Parkinsonism: Ankush Garg,Sharmistha Sinha, (2022) Colloids and Surfaces B: Biointerfaces, 212: 112371. DOI: 10.1016/j.colsurfb.2022.112371

  3. Naturally occurring protein nano compartments: basic structure, function, and genetic engineering: Dimple Goel,Sharmistha Sinha, (2021) Nano Express, 2 (4): 042001. DOI: 10.1088/2632-959X/ac2c93/

  4. Factors deciding the assembly and thermostability of the DmrB cage: Ankush Garg,Sharmistha Sinha, (2021) International Journal of Biological Macromolecules 182, 959-967, 182: 959-967. DOI: 10.1016/j.ijbiomac.2021.04.040

  5. Biophysical approaches to understand and re-purpose bacterial microcompartments: Gaurav Kumar,Sharmistha Sinha, (2021) Current Opinion in Microbiology, 63,: 43-51. DOI: 10.1016/j.mib.2021.05.008

  6. Protein morphology drives the structure and catalytic activity of bio-inorganic hybrids: Harpreet Kaur,Naimat K Bari,Ankush Garg,Sharmistha Sinha, (2021) International Journal of Biological Macromolecules, Just Accepted: . DOI: 10.1016/j.ijbiomac.2021.01.217

  7. Temporal control in tritylation reactions through light-driven variation in chloride ion binding catalysis–A proof of concept: Surbhi Grewal Saonli Roy Himanshu Kumar Mayank Saraswat Naimat K Bari Sharmistha Sinha Sugumar Venkataramani, (2020) Catalysis Science & Technology, 10 (20): 7027-7033. DOI: 10.1039/D0CY01090A

  8. Probe into a Multi-Protein Prokaryotic Organelle Using Thermal Scanning Assay Reveals Distinct Properties of the Core and the Shell: Dr. Naimat K Bari ,Jagadish P Hazra ,Gaurav Kumar,Simerpreet Kaur,SHARMISTHA SINHA, (2020) BBA - General Subjects, 1864(10): 129680. DOI: 10.1016/j.bbagen.2020.129680

  9. Variable Mutations at the p53-R273 Oncogenic Hotspot Position Leads to Altered Properties: Ankush Garg , Jagadish Prasad Hazra 2, Malay Kumar Sannigrahi 2, Sabyasachi Rakshit 3, Sharmistha Sinha, (2019) Biophysical Journal, 118 (3): 720-728. DOI: 10.1016/j.bpj.2019.12.015

  10. Functional protein shells fabricated from the self-assembling protein sheets of prokaryotic organelles: Naimat K. Bari, Gaurav Kumar , Jagadish P. Hazra, Simerpreet Kaur ,Sharmistha Sinha, (2019) Journal of Materials Chemistry B, 8: 523-533. DOI: https://doi.org/10.1039/C9TB02224D

  11. Cellulose-metallothionein matrix for metal binding: Naimat K.Bari ,Shaswat Barua ,Ankush Garg,Malay K Sannigrahi,Sharmistha Sinha, (2018) Carbohydrate polymers, 192: 126-134. DOI: 10.1016/j.carbpol.2018.03.043

  12. Nanoparticle Fabrication on Bacterial Microcompartment Surface for the Development of Hybrid Enzyme-Inorganic Catalyst.: Naimat Kalim Bari , Gaurav Kumar, Aashish Bhatt, Jagadish Prasad Hazra, Ankush Garg, Md. Ehesan Ali, (2018) ACS Catal., 8: 7742–7748. DOI: 10.1021/acscatal.8b02322

  13. The Wrappers of the 1,2-Propanediol Utilization Bacterial Microcompartments.: Naimat K Bari, Gaurav Kumar, Sharmistha Sinha, (2018) Adv Exp Med Biol ., 1112: 333-344.. DOI: 10.1007/978-981-13-3065-0_23

  14. Enhanced bacterial cellulose production from Gluconobacter xylinus using super optimal broth: Prathna T. Chandrasekaran, Naimat Kalim Bari, (2017) Cellulose, 24(10): 4367–4381.

  15. Selective molecular transport through the protein shell of a bacterial microcompartment organelle: Chowdhury C, Chun S, Pang A, Sawaya MR, Sinha S, Yeates TO, Bobik TA., (2015) Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A., 112(10): 2990-5. DOI: 10.1073/pnas.1423672112

  16. Alanine scanning mutagenesis identifies an asparagine-arginine-lysine triad essential to assembly of the shell of the Pdu microcompartment: Shouqiang Cheng, Yea Won Sung, Dan E. McNamara, Michael R. Sawaya, Todd O. Yeates, Thomas A. Bobik. J., (2014) J. Mol. Biol., 26(12): 2328-45. DOI: 10.1016/j.jmb.2014.04.012

  17. Diverse bacterial microcompartment organelles: Chowdhury C, Sinha S, Chun S, Yeates TO, Bobik TA., (2014) Microbiol Mol Biol Rev., 78(3): 438-68. DOI: 10.1128/MMBR.00009-14

  18. Interactions between the termini of lumen enzymes and shell proteins mediate enzyme encapsulation into bacterial microcompartments: Sharmistha Sinha, (2012) PNAS, 109(37): 14995-5000. DOI: doi: 10.1073/pnas.1207516109

  19. Comparison of Three Amyloid Assembly Inhibitors: The Sugar Scyllo-Inositol, the Polyphenol Epigallocatechin Gallate, and the Molecular Tweezer CLR01: Sharmistha Sinha 1, Zhenming Du, Panchanan Maiti, Frank-Gerrit Klärner, Thomas Schrader, Chunyu Wang, Gal Bitan, (2012) ACS Chemical Neuroscience, 3(6): 451-8. DOI: DOI: 10.1021/cn200133x

  20. A Key Role for Lysine Residues in Amyloid β-Protein Folding, Assembly, and Toxicity: Sharmistha Sinha,Dahabada H. J. Lopes,Gal Bitan. ACS Chem. Neurosci., (2012) ACS Chem. Neurosci., 3 (6): 473–481. DOI: 10.1021/cn3000247

  21. Lysine-Specific Molecular Tweezers Are Broad-Spectrum Inhibitors of Assembly and Toxicity of Amyloid Proteins: Sharmistha Sinha, Dahabada H. J. Lopes, Zhenming Du, Eric S. Pang, Akila Shanmugam, Aleksey Lomakin, Peter Talbiersky, Annette Tennstaedt, Kirsten McDaniel, Reena Bakshi, Pei-Yi Kuo, Michael Ehrmann, George B. Benedek, Joseph A. Loo, Frank-Gerrit Klärner, Thomas Schrader, Chunyu Wang, and Gal Bitan J. Am. Chem. Soc, (2011) J. Am. Chem. Soc., 133 (42): 16958–16969. DOI: 10.1021/ja206279b

  1. Application of Photochemical Cross-linking to the Study of Oligomerization of Amyloidogenic Proteins: Lopes DHJ, C Rosensweig, G Bitan., (2012) Methods Mol Biol., 849: 11-21.

  2. Amyloids and Protein Aggregation—Analytical Methods: Li H, F Rahimi, K Murakami, P Maiti, G Bitan., (2009) Encyclopedia of Analytical Chemistry., .

  1. New compounds for the treatment of diseases related to protein misfolding: T Schrader, K Hochdorffer, J Marz-Berberich, L Nagel-Steger, G Bitan, (2010) .

  2. Molecular Tweezers for the Treatment of Amyloid-Related Diseases: P. Talbiersky, A. Lomakin, F.-G. Klärner, T. Schrader, S. Frautschy,G. Bitan., (2010) .

  3. XVIII International Symposium on Glycoconjugates (GLYCO-18): Florence, Italy, (2005) .

  1. The 56th Biophysical Society Meeting: SanDiego, CA, (2012) .

  2. The 23rd Symposium of the Protein Society, Boston: MA, (2009) .

  3. XVII International Symposium on Glycoconjugates (GLYCO-17): Bangalore, (2002) .


  • Understanding the Forces Involved in the Packing of Enzymes Inside the Bacterial Microcompartments for the Development of Novel Encapsulated Bio-Systems 3y, DBT, GoI
    Funding Amount: 58 lakhs
    PI: Dr. Sharmistha Sinha
  • Exploring the shell proteins of BMCPs as potential substrate for fabrication of Organic-Inorganic Hybrid Nanomaterials 3y, DST Nano Mission
    Funding Amount: 47 lakhs
    PI: Dr. Sharmistha Sinha Co-PI: Prof. Ehesan Ali
  • Cellulose-protein binary conjugates for metal detoxification 3y, SERB-Women Excellence Award
    Funding Amount: 18 lakhs
    PI: Dr. Sharmistha Sinha
  • Cell-free bioreactors from the shell proteins of bacterial microcompartments 3y, SERB
    Funding Amount: 47 lakhs
    PI: Dr. Sharmistha Sinha
  • Biological treatment of engineered nanomaterials-contaminated wastewater-feasibility and implication Two Years, INST
    Funding Amount: 10 Lakhs
    Role PI: Dr. Sonalika Vaidya Role Co-PI: Dr. Sharmistha Sinha

  • 2006

    PhD (Biophysics)

    Molecular Biophysics Unit, Indian Institute of Science, Bangalore, INDIA.

  • Postdoctoral Fellow:Dept. of Biochem. Biophys. and Mol. Biol., Iowa State University, Ames,, USA (April 2010 to April 2013 )

  • Postdoctoral Fellow:Dept. of Neurology, University of California, Los Angeles,, USA (March 2008 to March 2010 )

  • Research Associate:Indian Institute of Science, Bangalore,, India (April 2007 to April 2008 )

Awards & Honours

Professional Recognitions