Akhilesh K Tyagi

National Human Genome Research Institute, Maryland, United States

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Publications (148)511.59 Total impact

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    ABSTRACT: OsiSAP1, an A20/AN1 zinc-finger protein, confers water-deficit stress tolerance at different stages of growth by affecting expression of several endogenous genes in transgenic rice. Transgenic lines have been generated from rice constitutively expressing OsiSAP1, an A20/AN1 zinc-finger containing stress-associated protein gene from rice, driven by maize UBIQUITIN gene promoter and evaluated for water-deficit stress tolerance at different stages of growth. Their seeds show early germination and seedlings grow better under water-deficit stress compared to non-transgenic (NT) rice. Leaves from transgenic seedlings showed lesser membrane damage and lipid peroxidation under water-deficit stress. Relatively lower rate of leaf water loss has been observed in detached intact leaves from transgenic plants during late vegetative stage. Delayed leaf rolling and higher relative water content were also observed in transgenic plants under progressive water-deficit stress during reproductive developmental stage. Although reduction in grain yield is observed under unstressed condition, the relative water-deficit stress-induced yield losses are lower in transgenic rice vis-à-vis NT plants thereby resulting in yield loss protection. Transcriptome analysis suggests that overexpression of OsiSAP1 in transgenic rice results in altered expression of several endogenous genes including those coding for transcription factors, membrane transporters, signaling components and genes involved in metabolism, growth and development. A total of 150 genes were found to be more than twofold up-regulated in transgenic rice of which 43 genes are known to be involved in stress response. Our results suggest that OsiSAP1 is a positive regulator of water-deficit stress tolerance in rice.
    Plant Cell Reports 06/2014; · 2.51 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Genes in the Armadillo (ARM)-repeat superfamily encode proteins with a range of developmental and physiological processes in unicellular and multicellular eukaryotes. These 42 amino acid, long tandem repeat-containing proteins have been abundantly recognized in many plant species. Previous studies have confirmed that Armadillo proteins constitute a multigene family in Arabidopsis. In this study, we performed a computational analysis in the rice genome (Oryza sativa L. subsp. japonica), and identified 158 genes of Armadillo superfamily. Phylogenetic study classified them into several arbitrary groups based on a varying number of non-conserved ARM repeats and accessory domain(s) associated with them. An in-depth analysis of gene expression through microarray and Q-PCR revealed a number of ARM proteins expressing differentially in abiotic stresses and developmental conditions, suggesting a potential roles of this superfamily in development and stress signalling. Comparative phylogenetic analysis between Arabidopsis and rice Armadillo genes revealed a high degree of evolutionary conservation between the orthologues in two plant species. The non-synonymous and synonymous substitutions per site ratios (Ka/Ks) of duplicated gene pairs indicate a purifying selection. This genome-wide identification and expression analysis provides a basis for further functional analysis of Armadillo genes under abiotic stress and reproductive developmental condition in the plant lineage.
    DNA Research 01/2014; · 4.43 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Eukaryotic A20/AN1 zinc-finger proteins (ZFPs) play an important role in the regulation of immune and stress response. After elucidation of the role of first such protein, OsSAP1, in abiotic stress tolerance, 18 rice stress associated protein (SAP) genes have been shown to be regulated by multiple abiotic stresses. In the present study, expression pattern of all the 18 OsSAP genes have been analyzed in response to different biotic stress simulators, in order to get insights into their possible involvement in biotic stress tolerance. Our results showed the upregulation of OsSAP1 and OsSAP11 by all biotic stress simulator treatments. Furthermore, the functional role of OsSAP1 in plant defence responses has been explored through overexpression in transgenic plants. Constitutive expression of OsSAP1 in transgenic tobacco resulted into enhanced disease resistance against virulent bacterial pathogen, together with the upregulation of known defence-related genes. Present investigation suggests that rice SAPs are responsive to multiple biotic stresses and OsSAP1 plays a key role in basal resistance against pathogen infection. This strongly supports the involvement of rice SAPs in cross-talk between biotic and abiotic stress signaling pathways, which makes them ideal candidate to design strategies for protecting crop plants against multiple stresses.
    Plant Science. 01/2014;
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    ABSTRACT: Ca(2+) homeostasis is required to maintain a delicate balance of cytosolic Ca(2+) during normal and adverse growth conditions. Various Ca(2+) transporters actively participate to maintain this delicate balance especially during abiotic stresses and developmental events in plants. In this study, we are presenting a genome wide account, detail expression profiles, sub-cellular localization and functional analysis of rice calcium transport elements. Exhaustive in-silico data mining and analysis resulted in the identification of 81 Ca(2+) transport element genes, which belongs to various groups such as Ca(2+) -ATPases (pumps), exchangers, channels, glutamate receptor homologs (GLRs) and annexins. Phylogenetic analysis revealed that different Ca(2+) transporters are evolutionary conserved across different plant species. Comprehensive expression analysis by gene chip microarray and qPCR revealed that a substantial proportion of Ca(2+) transporter genes were expressed differentially under abiotic stresses (salt, cold and drought) and reproductive developmental stages (panicle and seed) in rice. These findings suggest possible role of rice Ca(2+) transporters in abiotic stress and development triggered signaling pathways. Subcellular localization of Ca(2+) transporters from different groups in Nicotiana benthamiana revealed their variable localization to different compartments, which could be their possible sites of action. Complementation of Ca(2+) transport activity of K616 yeast mutant by Ca(2+) -ATPase, OsACA7 and involvement in salt tolerance verified its functional behavior. This study will encourage detailed characterization of potential candidate Ca(2+) transporters for their functional role in-planta. This article is protected by copyright. All rights reserved.
    FEBS Journal 11/2013; · 4.25 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Tyagi AK 1 , Parida SK 1 , Bajaj D1, Das S 1 , Malick N 1 , Anand D 2 , Kapoor S 3 , Singh AK 2 , Agarwal P 1 1 National Institute of Plant Genome Research, Aruna Asaf Ali Marg, New Delhi 110067, India, 2 Division of Genetics, Indian Agricultural Research Institute, New Delhi 110012, India, 3 Department of Plant Molecular Biology, Delhi University South Campus, New Delhi 110021, India. akhilesh@genomeindia.org We are working to define major genes related to seed development by forward and reverse genetics approaches. Specific gene targets from HAP and MED gene families have been taken-up for functional analysis based on their expression characteristics. More recently, SNP marker-based genome-wide association (GWAS) mapping has been utilized for dissection of complex quantitative grain size traits in rice. Genotyping-by-sequencing (GBS) of 96 phenotypically and genotypically diverse rice genotypes contrasting for three major grain size traits identified 199,085 SNPs, including 105,517 SNPs in 31,267 genes. The reliability of SNPs identified through GBS analysis has been ascertained by their large-scale validation in a selected set of genes using Illumina GoldenGate genotyping assay and cloned amplicon sequencing. Genome-wide linkage disequilibrium (LD) decay and GWAS analysis identified 82 target genomic loci showing strong association with grain length, grain width and grain weight in rice. A selected set of these grain size-associated genes has been validated through SNP haplotyping and traditional bi-parental linkage mapping. The identified genetic loci and haplotypes regulating grain development have potential for genetic improvement in rice.
    International symposium on Rice Functional Genomics; 11/2013
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    ABSTRACT: 'Manually Curated Database of Rice Proteins' (MCDRP) available at http://www.genomeindia.org/biocuration is a unique curated database based on published experimental data. Semantic integration of scientific data is essential to gain a higher level of understanding of biological systems. Since the majority of scientific data is available as published literature, text mining is an essential step before the data can be integrated and made available for computer-based search in various databases. However, text mining is a tedious exercise and thus, there is a large gap in the data available in curated databases and published literature. Moreover, data in an experiment can be perceived from several perspectives, which may not reflect in the text-based curation. In order to address such issues, we have demonstrated the feasibility of digitizing the experimental data itself by creating a database on rice proteins based on in-house developed data curation models. Using these models data of individual experiments have been digitized with the help of universal ontologies. Currently, the database has data for over 1800 rice proteins curated from >4000 different experiments of over 400 research articles. Since every aspect of the experiment such as gene name, plant type, tissue and developmental stage has been digitized, experimental data can be rapidly accessed and integrated.
    Nucleic Acids Research 11/2013; · 8.28 Impact Factor
  • InterDrought-IV, Perth, Australia.; 09/2013
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    Saraswati Nayar, Rita Sharma, Akhilesh Kumar Tyagi, Sanjay Kapoor
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    ABSTRACT: Rice MADS29 has recently been reported to cause programmed cell death of maternal tissues, the nucellus, and the nucellar projection during early stages of seed development. However, analyses involving OsMADS29 protein expression domains and characterization of OsMADS29 gain-of-function and knockdown phenotypes revealed novel aspects of its function in maintaining hormone homeostasis, which may have a role in the development of embryo and plastid differentiation and starch filling in endosperm cells. The MADS29 transcripts accumulated to high levels soon after fertilization; however, protein accumulation was found to be delayed by at least 4 days. Immunolocalization studies revealed that the protein accumulated initially in the dorsal-vascular trace and the outer layers of endosperm, and subsequently in the embryo and aleurone and subaleurone layers of the endosperm. Ectopic expression of MADS29 resulted in a severely dwarfed phenotype, exhibiting elevated levels of cytokinin, thereby suggesting that cytokinin biosynthesis pathway could be one of the major targets of OsMADS29. Overexpression of OsMADS29 in heterologous BY2 cells was found to mimic the effects of exogenous application of cytokinins that causes differentiation of proplastids to starch-containing amyloplasts and activation of genes involved in the starch biosynthesis pathway. Suppression of MADS29 expression by RNAi severely affected seed set. The surviving seeds were smaller in size, with developmental abnormalities in the embryo and reduced size of endosperm cells, which also contained loosely packed starch granules. Microarray analysis of overexpression and knockdown lines exhibited altered expression of genes involved in plastid biogenesis, starch biosynthesis, cytokinin signalling and biosynthesis.
    Journal of Experimental Botany 08/2013; · 5.24 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Background: Phospholipase C (PLC) is one of the major lipid hydrolysing enzymes, implicated in lipid mediated signaling. PLCs have been found to play a significant role in abiotic stress triggered signaling and developmental processes in various plant species. Genome wide identification and expression analysis have been carried out for this gene family in Arabidopsis, yet not much has been accomplished in crop plant rice. Methodology/Principal Findings: An exhaustive in-silico exploration of rice genome using various online databases and tools resulted in the identification of nine PLC encoding genes. Based on sequence, motif and phylogenetic analysis rice PLC gene family could be divided into phosphatidylinositol-specific PLCs (PI-PLCs) and phosphatidylcholine-PLCs (PC-PLC or NPC) classes with four and five members, respectively. A comparative analysis revealed that PLCs are conserved in Arabidopsis (dicots) and rice (monocot) at gene structure and protein level but they might have evolved through a separate evolutionary path. Transcript profiling using gene chip microarray and quantitative RT-PCR showed that most of the PLC members expressed significantly and differentially under abiotic stresses (salt, cold and drought) and during various developmental stages with condition/stage specific and overlapping expression. This finding suggested an important role of different rice PLC members in abiotic stress triggered signaling and plant development, which was also supported by the presence of relevant cis-regulatory elements in their promoters. Sub-cellular localization of few selected PLC members in Nicotiana benthamiana and onion epidermal cells has provided a clue about their site of action and functional behaviour. Conclusion/Significance: The genome wide identification, structural and expression analysis and knowledge of sub-cellular localization of PLC gene family envisage the functional characterization of these genes in crop plants in near future. Copyright: ß 2013 Singh et al. This is an open-access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original author and source are credited. Funding: The authors acknowledge Department of Biotechnology (DBT), Department of Science and Technology (DST) and Council for Scientific and Industrial Research (CSIR), INDIA for funding the research in GKP's lab. AS and PK acknowledge senior research fellowship from CSIR, India. The funders had no role in study design, data collection and analysis, decision to publish, or preparation of the manuscript. Competing Interests: The authors have declared that no competing interests exist.
    PLoS ONE 05/2013; 8(4):e62494. · 3.73 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Stress associated proteins (SAPs), novel A20/AN1 zinc-finger domain-containing proteins, are fast emerging as potential candidates for biotechnological approaches in order to improve abiotic stress tolerance in plants - the ultimate aim of which is crop-yield protection. Until relatively recently, such proteins had only been identified in humans, where they had been shown to be key regulators of innate immunity. Their phylogenetic relationship and recruitment of diverse protein domains reflect an architectural and mechanistic diversity. Emerging evidence suggests that SAPs may act as ubiquitin ligase, redox sensor, and regulator of gene expression during stress. Here, we evaluate the new knowledge on SAPs with a view to understand their mechanism of action. Furthermore, we set an agenda for investigating hitherto unexplored roles of these proteins.
    BioEssays 05/2013; · 5.42 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: We developed 1108 transcription factor gene-derived microsatellite (TFGMS) and 161 transcription factor functional domain-associated microsatellite (TFFDMS) markers from 707 TFs of chickpea. The robust amplification efficiency (96.5%) and high intra-specific polymorphic potential (34%) detected by markers suggest their immense utilities in efficient large-scale genotyping applications, including construction of both physical and functional transcript maps and understanding population structure. Candidate gene-based association analysis revealed strong genetic association of TFFDMS markers with three major seed and pod traits. Further, TFGMS markers in the 5' untranslated regions of TF genes showing differential expression during seed development had higher trait association potential. The significance of TFFDMS markers was demonstrated by correlating their allelic variation with amino acid sequence expansion/contraction in the functional domain and alteration of secondary protein structure encoded by genes. The seed weight-associated markers were validated through traditional bi-parental genetic mapping. The determination of gene-specific linkage disequilibrium (LD) patterns in desi and kabuli based on single nucleotide polymorphism-microsatellite marker haplotypes revealed extended LD decay, enhanced LD resolution and trait association potential of genes. The evolutionary history of a strong seed-size/weight-associated TF based on natural variation and haplotype sharing among desi, kabuli and wild unravelled useful information having implication for seed-size trait evolution during chickpea domestication.
    DNA Research 04/2013; · 4.43 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Sugarcane (Saccharum spp. hybrid) with complex polyploid genome requires a large number of informative DNA markers for various applications in genetics and breeding. Despite the great advances in genomic technology, it is observed in several crop species, especially in sugarcane, the availability of molecular tools such as microsatellite markers are limited. Now-a-days EST-SSR markers are preferred to genomic SSR (gSSR) as they represent only the functional part of the genome, which can be easily associated with desired trait. The present study was taken up with a new set of 351 EST-SSRs developed from the 4085 non redundant EST sequences of two Indian sugarcane cultivars. Among these EST-SSRs, TNR containing motifs were predominant with frequency of 51.6%. Thirty percent EST-SSRs showed homology with annotated protein. A high frequency of SSRs was found in the 5'UTR and in the ORF (about 27%) and a low frequency was observed in the 3'UTR (about 8%). Two hundred twenty-seven EST-SSRs were evaluated, in sugarcane, allied genera of sugarcane and cereals, and 134 of these have revealed polymorphism with a range of PIC value 0.12 to 0.99. The cross transferability rate ranged from 87.0% to 93.4% in Saccharum complex, 80.0 % to 87.0 % in allied genera, and 76.0% to 80.0% in cereals. Cloning and sequencing of EST-SSR size variant amplicons revealed that the variation in the number of repeat-units was the main source of EST-SSR fragment polymorphism. When 124 sugarcane accessions were analyzed for population structure using model-based approach, seven genetically distinct groups or admixtures thereof were observed in sugarcane. Results of principal coordinate analysis or UPGMA to evaluate genetic relationships delineated also the 124 accessions into seven groups. Thus, high level of polymorphism adequate genetic diversity and population structure assayed with the EST-SSR markers not only suggested their utility in various applications in genetics and genomics in sugarcane but also enriched the microsatellite markers resources in sugarcane.
    Gene 04/2013; · 2.20 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Chickpea (Cicer arietinum L.) is the third most important food legume crop. We have generated the draft sequence of a desi type chickpea genome using next generation sequencing platforms, bacterial artificial chromosome end sequences and a genetic map. The 520 Mb assembly covers 70% of the predicted 740 Mb genome length and more than 80% of the gene space. Genome analysis predicts the presence of 27,571 genes and 210 Mb as repeat elements. The gene expression analysis performed using 274 million RNA-Seq reads identified several tissue-specific and stress-responsive genes. Although segmental duplicated blocks are observed, chickpea genome does not exhibit any indication of recent whole genome duplication. Nucleotide diversity analysis provides an assessment of a narrow genetic base within the chickpea cultivars. We have developed a resource for genetic markers by comparing the genome sequences of one wild and three cultivated chickpea genotypes. The draft genome sequence is expected to facilitate genetic enhancement and breeding to develop improved chickpea varieties. © 2013 The Authors. The Plant Journal © 2013 Blackwell Publishing Ltd.
    The Plant Journal 03/2013; · 6.58 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: OSIPP3 gene (coding for pectin methylesterase inhibitor protein) was isolated from a pre-pollinated inflorescence-specific cDNA library by differential screening of stage-specific libraries from Oryza sativa. OSIPP3 is present in the genome of rice as a single copy gene. OSIPP3 gene was expressed exclusively in the pre-pollinated spikelets of rice. Upstream regulatory region (URR) of OSIPP3 was isolated and a series of 5'-deletions were cloned upstream of GUS reporter gene and were used to transform Arabidopsis. OSIPP3_del1 and del2 transgenic plants showed GUS expression in root, anther and silique, while OSIPP3_del3 showed GUS activity only in anthers and siliques. Pollen-specific expression was observed in case of plants harboring OSIPP3_del4 construct. It can, therefore, be concluded that the OSIPP3 URR between -178 and +108 bp is necessary for conferring pollen-specific expression in Arabidopsis.
    Biotechnology Letters 12/2012; · 1.85 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Perceived by Charles Darwin in many vegetable plants and rediscovered by George H Shull and Edward M East in maize, heterosis or hybrid vigour is one of the most widely utilized phenomena, not only in agriculture but also in animal breeding. Although, numerous studies have been carried out to understand its genetic and/or molecular basis in the past 100 years, our knowledge of the underlying molecular processes that results in hybrid vigour can best be defined as superficial. Even after century long deliberations, there is no consensus on the relative/individual contribution of the genetic/epigenetic factors in the manifestation of heterosis. However, with the recent advancements in functional genomics, transcriptomics, proteomics, and metabolomics-related technologies, the riddle of heterosis is being reinvestigated by adopting systems-level approaches to understand the underlying molecular mechanisms. A number of intriguing hypotheses are converging towards the idea of a cumulative positive effect of the differential expression of a variety of genes, on one or several yield-affecting metabolic pathways or overall energy-use efficiency, as the underlying mechanism for the manifestation of heterosis. Presented here is a brief account of clues gathered from various investigative approaches targeted towards better scientific understanding of this process.
    Journal of Experimental Botany 10/2012; · 5.24 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Understanding the evolutionary and genomic mechanisms responsible for turning the soil-derived saprophytic mycobacteria into lethal intracellular pathogens is a critical step towards the development of strategies for the control of mycobacterial diseases. In this context, Mycobacterium indicus pranii (MIP) is of specific interest because of its unique immunological and evolutionary significance. Evolutionarily, it is the progenitor of opportunistic pathogens belonging to M. avium complex and is endowed with features that place it between saprophytic and pathogenic species. Herein, we have sequenced the complete MIP genome to understand its unique life style, basis of immunomodulation and habitat diversification in mycobacteria. As a case of massive gene acquisitions, 50.5% of MIP open reading frames (ORFs) are laterally acquired. We show, for the first time for Mycobacterium, that MIP genome has mosaic architecture. These gene acquisitions have led to the enrichment of selected gene families critical to MIP physiology. Comparative genomic analysis indicates a higher antigenic potential of MIP imparting it a unique ability for immunomodulation. Besides, it also suggests an important role of genomic fluidity in habitat diversification within mycobacteria and provides a unique view of evolutionary divergence and putative bottlenecks that might have eventually led to intracellular survival and pathogenic attributes in mycobacteria.
    Nucleic Acids Research 09/2012; · 8.28 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: The present study reports the large-scale discovery of genome-wide single-nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) in chickpea, identified mainly through the next generation sequencing of two genotypes, i.e. Cicer arietinum ICC4958 and its wild progenitor C. reticulatum PI489777, parents of an inter-specific reference mapping population of chickpea. Development and validation of a high-throughput SNP geno-typing assay based on Illumina's GoldenGate Genotyping Technology and its application in building a high-resolution genetic linkage map of chickpea is described for the first time. In this study, 1022 SNPs were identified, of which 768 high-confidence SNPs were selected for designing the custom Oligo Pool All (CpOPA-I) for genotyping. Of these, 697 SNPs could be successfully used for genotyping, demonstrating a high success rate of 90.75%. Genotyping data of the 697 SNPs were compiled along with those of 368 co-dominant markers mapped in an earlier study, and a saturated genetic linkage map of chickpea was constructed. One thousand and sixty-three markers were mapped onto eight linkage groups spanning 1808.7 cM (centiMorgans) with an average inter-marker distance of 1.70 cM, thereby representing one of the most advanced maps of chickpea. The map was used for the synteny analysis of chickpea, which revealed a higher degree of synteny with the phylogenetically close Medicago than with soybean. The first set of validated SNPs and map resources developed in this study will not only facilitate QTL mapping, genome-wide association analysis and comparative mapping in legumes but also help anchor scaffolds arising out of the whole-genome sequencing of chickpea.
    DNA Research 08/2012; · 4.43 Impact Factor
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    Rohini Garg, Akhilesh K Tyagi, Mukesh Jain
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    ABSTRACT: Hormones exert pleiotropic effects on plant growth and development throughout the life cycle. Many of these effects are mediated at molecular level via altering gene expression. In this study, we investigated the exogenous effect of plant hormones, including auxin, cytokinin, abscisic acid, ethylene, salicylic acid and jasmonic acid, on the transcription of rice genes at whole genome level using microarray. Our analysis identified a total of 4171 genes involved in several biological processes, whose expression was altered significantly in the presence of different hormones. Further, 28% of these genes exhibited overlapping transcriptional responses in the presence of any two hormones, indicating crosstalk among plant hormones. In addition, we identified genes showing only a particular hormone-specific response, which can be used as hormone-specific markers. The results of this study will facilitate further studies in hormone biology in rice.
    Plant signaling & behavior 08/2012; 7(8):951-6.

Publication Stats

4k Citations
511.59 Total Impact Points


  • 2014
    • National Human Genome Research Institute
      Maryland, United States
  • 2013
    • Indian Institute of Sugarcane Research
      Lakhnau, Uttar Pradesh, India
  • 2012
    • Chaudhary Charan Singh University
      • Department of Genetics and Plant Breeding
      Meerut, Uttar Pradesh, India
  • 2010–2012
    • National Institute of Plant Genome Research
      • Laboratory of Functional and Applied Genomics
      New Delhi, NCT, India
  • 1992–2012
    • University of Delhi
      • • Department of Plant Molecular Biology
      • • Department of Botany (Faculty of Science)
      Delhi, NCT, India
  • 2006
    • International Crops Research Institute for Semi Arid Tropics
      Bhaganagar, Andhra Pradesh, India
  • 2004
    • National Research Centre on Plant Biotechnology
      Old Delhi, NCT, India