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Green Carbon for Food Security: Genomes to Phenomes in Algae.

Biology Colloquium | Dr. Gitanjali Yadav | Nov 3rd, 2023 (Friday)

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Green Carbon is the organic ‘living’ carbon stored in the biosphere, captured through photosynthesis, a process critically dependent on the activity of RubisCO – a key enzyme in the global carbon cycle. Arguably the most abundant protein on Earth, this enzyme is enormously inefficient. Over the last 600Mya, nature has optimized ways to overcome this inefficiency, evolving methods of carbon acquisition, collectively called the Carbon Concentrating Mechanisms (CCM). In this talk, I shall present our work on marine algal biophysical CCMs, specially in terms of Genomic & transcriptomic interventions to decipher spatio-temporal gene regulatory networks and key molecular actors modulating biophysical CCM. Incorporating the algal model into higher plants would not only enhance RubisCO efficiency but also, biomass production, towards food security.

About the Speaker: 

Dr. Gitanjali Yadav is Scientist at National Institute of Plant Genome Research, New Delhi and a Lecturer at the University of Cambridge, on a joint appointment with the Govt of India. She has a diverse educational background, with a Ph.D. in Microbial Immunology (from the National Institute of Immunology, New Delhi India), a Master’s degree in Biomedical Research and graduate degree with Honors in Botany, from the University of Delhi. She is a specialist in Genomics and Structural Biology with focus on food security and plant communication.

Dr. Yadav has received several awards in recognition of her work, including the Hamied Fellowship from the University of Cambridge (2019), Exceptional Talent Award from the Royal Society of London (2017), the INSA Medal from the Indian National Science Academy (2011), the Innovative Young Biotechnologist Award (IYBA) by the DBT, and the Women’s Excellence Award (WEA) from the Ministry of Science and Technology, Govt of India (2014).

She actively promotes science as a way of life to underprivileged students from rural India, especially girls. Over the past year, she has been a Mentor for Women in Science Program of the British Ecological Society, as well as an ambassador of Indian Women in Science, at the CNRS Indo-French Women in Science Program, the Asia-Pacific Network for Bioinformatics (InCoB), as well as the Middle Eastern South Asia (MESA) Conference for Promotion of Science.

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