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SCHOOL OF NATURAL SCIENCES
NATURAL SCIENCES
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Faculty
Department of Life Sciences
Rohini Garg
Assistant Professor
Department of Life Sciences
School of Natural Sciences
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Education Details
Ph.D. - National Institute of Immunology, New Delhi
M.Sc. - University of Delhi, New Delhi
B.Sc. - University of Delhi, New Delhi
Professional Experience
Assistant Professor, Shiv Nadar University, Dadri, UP, India (2016-present)
Innovative Young Biotechnologists Award (IYBA) Fellow, NIPGR, New Delhi, India (2013-2016)
INSPIRE Faculty Fellow, NIPGR, New Delhi (2012-2017)
Post-doctoral fellow, NIPGR, New Delhi (2009-2011)
Grants
INSPIRE Faculty Award, Department of Science and Technology (DST), Government of India, 2012-2017 (Principal Investigator) (in progress)

Innovative Young Biotechnologist Award (IYBA) Grant, Department of Biotechnology, Ministry of Science & Technology, Government of India, 2013-2016, (Principal Investigator) (in progress)
Research Interests
Epigenomics of abiotic stress responses in plants

Epigenetic regulation of gene expression involves complex interplay between DNA methylation, histone modifications, and non-coding RNAs, notably long non-coding RNAs (lncRNA), small interfering RNAs (siRNAs) and micro RNAs (miRNAs). In order to understand the biological significance of epigenetic regulation, it is important to map the epigenome in some detail. Recent developments in genomic information and importance of stress adaptation in plants have set the stage for epigenomic studies in crop plants. We will undertake identification of methylome under abiotic stress conditions, followed by integration of epigenomic and gene expression data to gain insight into the regulation of stress responses by epigenetic mechanism.



Secondary structure mediated gene regulation during abiotic stress and development in plants

Genetic information in the cell is determined not only by the nucleic acid sequence but also by the chemical modifications (such as cytosine methylation) and structural modifications (G-quadruplexes, i-motifs etc). It is well known that cytosine methylation plays an essential role in various developmental processes in plants. Secondary structure formation have critical role in biological processes ranging from chromosome stability to the regulation of gene transcription in humans and yeast; we seek to understand their biological function in various developmental processes in plants such as root architecture and maintenance of root stem cell niche. Overall, the work will involve a combination of state-of-art wet-lab advanced molecular biology and biotechnology techniques along with various bioinformatics tools/approaches. Our studies will provide novel insights into the molecular mechanisms involved in secondary structure mediated gene regulation during abiotic stress and development in plants.

Select Publications
  1. Garg R*, Aggarwal J, Thakkar B. (2016). Genome-wide discovery of G-quadruplex forming sequences and their functional relevance in plants. Scientific Reports (Nature) 6, 28211. (*corresponding author).

  2. Khemka N, SinghV K, Garg R, Jain M (2016) Genome-wide analysis of long intergenic non-coding RNAs in chickpea and their potential role in flower development Scientific Reports (Nature) 6, 33297.

  3. Srivastava P, Verma M, Ghangal R, Garg R, Jain M. (2016) De novo transcriptome assembly and comprehensive expression profiling in Crocus sativus to gain insights into apocarotenoid biosynthesis. Scientific Reports (Nature) 6, 22456.

  4. Garg R, Shankar R, Thakkar B, Kudapa H, Ksrishnamurthy L, Mantri N, Varshney R, Bhatia S, Jain M. (2016) Transcriptome analyses reveal genotype- and developmental stage-specific molecular responses to drought and salinity stresses in chickpea. Scientific Reports (Nature) 6, 19228.

  5. Garg R†, Chevala VVSN, Shankar R, Jain M. (2015) Divergent DNA methylation patterns associated with gene expression in rice cultivars with contrasting drought and salinity stress response. Scientific Reports (Nature) 5, 14922. (†Joint corresponding author).

  6. Garg R*, Akhade AS*, Yadav J and Qadri A. (2015) TLR-2 agonistic activity of Vi contribute to switching of anti-Vi antibodies to IgG isotype in vivo. Innate Immunity 21, 778-783. (*Joint first author).

  7. Jain M, Chevala VVSN, Garg R (2014) Genome-wide discovery, analysis and implications of differential regulation of conserved and novel miRNAs in chickpea via deep sequencing. Journal of Experimental Botany 65, 5945-5958.

  8. Garg R*, Kumari R, Tiwari S, Goyal S (2014) Genomic survey, gene expression analysis and structural modeling suggest diverse roles of DNA methyltransferases in legumes. PLoS ONE 9, e88947 (* corresponding author).

  9. Jain M†, Moharana K C, Shankar R, Kumari R and Garg R† (2014) Genome-wide discovery of DNA polymorphisms in rice cultivars with contrasting drought and salinity response and their effects on gene function. Plant Biotechnology Journal 12, 253-264. (†Joint corresponding authors).

  10. Garg R, Verma M, Aggarwal S, Shankar R, Majee M and Jain M (2014) Deep transcriptome sequencing of wild halophyte rice, Porteresia coarctata, provides novel insights into the salinity and submergence tolerance factors. DNA Research 21, 69-84.

  11. Jain M, Mishra G, Patel RK, Priya P, Jhanwar S, Khan AW, Shah N, Singh VK, Garg R, Jeena G, Sharma P, Kant C, Yadav M, Yadav G, Bhatia S, Tyagi AK, Chattopadhyay D (2013). Genome sequence of the pulse crop chickpea (Cicer arietinum L.). Plant Journal, 74, 715-729.

  12. Singh VK, Garg R, Jain M. (2013) A global view of transcriptome dynamics during flower development in chickpea by deep sequencing. Plant Biotechnology Journal 11, 691-701.

  13. Garg R, Patel RK, Jhanwar S, Priya P, Bhattacharjee A, Yadav G, Bhatia S, Chattopadhyay D, Tyagi AK, Jain M (2011). Gene discovery and tissue-specific transcriptome analysis in chickpea with massively parallel pyrosequencing and web resource development. Plant Physiology 156, 1661-1678.

  14. Garg R, Patel RK, Tyagi AK, Jain M (2011). De novo assembly of chickpea transcriptome using short reads for gene discovery and marker identification. DNA Research 18, 53-63.

  15. Garg R, Qadri A (2010) Hemoglobin transforms anti-inflammatory Salmonella typhi virulence polysaccharide into a TLR-2 agonist. Journal of Immunology 184, 5980-5987.
National and International Recognition
  • Associate of Indian Academy of Sciences (IASc, Banglore, 2016-2019)
  • Young Scientist Platinum Jubilee Award (2014) from the National Academy of Sciences India (NASI).
  • Indian National Science Academy (INSA) medal for Young Scientist (2014).
  • Innovative Young Biotechnologists Award (IYBA) 2012 from the Department of Biotechnology, Government of India.
  • INSPIRE Faculty Award 2011 from the Department of Science and Technology, Government of India.
  • Contingency Award from Immunology Foundation to attend the EMBO workshop
  • Travel grant by Cancer Research Institute, New York, USA to attend 3rd Winter School in Immunology
  • Partial financial support by EMBO World Activities and University of Cape Town, South Africa.
  • Senior Research Fellowship from Council for Scientific and Industrial Research (CSIR), Government of India.
  • Junior Research Fellowship from Council for Scientific and Industrial Research (CSIR), Government of India.
  • University Gold Medal for First-Class-First position in M.Sc. Plant Molecular Biology from Delhi University, New Delhi.
  • Monsanto Post-graduate merit scholarship for two years (2002-2004).
Executive Summary
Dr Rohini Garg obtained her postgraduate degree in Plant Molecular Biology from University of Delhi, South Campus. She then joined National Institute of Immunology for her PhD in 2004 where she worked in the area of Salmonella host-pathogen interaction. In 2009, she moved to National Institute of Plant Genome Research, New Delhi to pursue post-doctoral work in the area of genomics and bioinformatics. Dr. Garg has carried out pioneering work on the generation of functional and applied genomic resources for chickpea and rice for their genetic enhancement. Her work has appeared in many peer-reviewed international journals. She has been awarded several prestigious awards from various national agencies/academies. She is currently interested in studying epigenetic regulatory mechanisms operating under abiotic stress in plants. Simultaneously, she is interested in investigating the association of DNA secondary structures with gene expression that will help in understanding their roles as regulatory elements underlying stress response and developmental processes. Her research will provide novel insights into the molecular mechanisms involved in development, stress response and adaptation in plants.
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