An Autonomous National Institute, Government of India, Department of Biotechnology, Ministry of Science & Technology
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K. Santhosh Kumar, Ph.D.
Scientist E-II
Tel : +91-471-2529518
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My lab at RGCB focus on chemical synthesis and chemical biology, the area’s most relevant to biomedical research. We work in areas as diverse as peptide antibiotics, nano drug delivery systems, combinatorial chemistry and molecular design. The foundation of all these areas of research is organic synthesis. Chemical biology further enables us to tackle scientific problems on the threshold between chemistry and biology.

Peptide antibiotics

The growing problem of resistance to conventional antibiotics and the need for new antibiotics has stimulated the search for new classes of antibiotics to which bacteria develop no resistance. Several potential host defense peptides (mini proteins) which are capable of inhibiting microbial growth in microgram level were isolated from the skin secretion of different frog species of Western Ghats and characterised. Their structure function analysis and mechanism of action may give valuable information about the structural requirements which can lead to the design and synthesis of novel therapeutic molecules.

Target Specific Novel Nano Drug Delivery Systems

Improving the therapeutic index is a major impetus for innovation in many therapeutic areas such as cancer, inflammatory and infective disease. A new monomer molecule was designed and synthesized to generate a biodegradable multifunctional nano-carrier as drug delivery vehicle that can deliver drug specifically to the tumors.

New polymer matrices for peptide/protein synthesis.

Stepwise synthesis of polypeptides beyond 50 residues using polymer support is still a challenging problem for peptide chemists because of the negative influence of the matrix. We designed and developed several novel polymer supports for the chemical synthesis of peptides/proteins, their derivatives and peptide library. These Matrices showed very high mechanical and chemical stability, swellability and compatibility in a wide range of solvents. The resin bound functional groups are confined to the surface of the polymer beads by grafting polyalkyl ether derivatives/ polyethyleneimine chains. The thickness of the grafted shell is controlled from polymer surface to its interior and this is an ideal support for the chemical synthesis of mini proteins, their higher fatty acid/PEG derivatives and enzyme immobilization.

Project grants

  1. Bioprospecting and Preclinical Development of Peptide Antibiotics from Frog Skin Secretions, Department of Biotechnology, Govt. of India, (2007-2011)
  2. Peptide conjugated Dendritic Nanocarriers for Targeted Multi phased Drug Delivery Department of Biotechnology, Govt. of India, (2007-2011)
  3. Conservation genetics of endemic Indirana frogs of Western Ghats. Indo-Finnish Collaboration. Department of Biotechnology, Govt. of India, (2008-2011)
  4. Explorative studies on the Pharmacological potential peptides focusing drug targets, W. Ghats Cell, Govt. of Kerala(2007-2010)
  5. Studies on bio-active peptides from frog skin secretions Kerala State Council for Science, Technology and Environment, Govt. of Kerala(2007-2010)
  6. Development of new hydrophilic, flexible polymer for solid phase combinatorial peptide library synthesis. Council of Scientific and Industrial Research (2005-2008)
  7. DNA Barcoding of selected ranid frogs of Western Ghats, Kerala secretions Kerala State Council for Science, Technology and Environment, Govt. of Kerala(2007-2010)
  8. Bioprospecting of Antimycobacterial compounds from selected plants Department of Biotechnology, Govt. of India, (2007-2010)
  9. Identification and evaluation of bioactive peptides: A biotechnological approach towards controlling fungal pathogen of quick wilt disease of black pepper , Indian Council of Agricultural Research (2001-2004)
  10. Peptide substrate recognition by Ca2+calmodulin dependent protein kinase type II. the Atomic energy, Govt of India (2001-2004).
  11. Identification of specific Mycobacterial antigen-like peptides from combinatorial phage libraries and studies on their use in the diagnosis of Tuberculosis. Department of Biotechnology, Govt. of India,