Dr. Suman Kapur

Birla Institute of Technology and Science, India

Dr. Suman Kapur, born and educated in New Delhi joined BITS, Pilani on 17th July 2004 as Professor in the Center for Biotechnology, Biological Sciences Group She has worked in the capacity of Unit Chief, Community Welfare and International Relations since 1st January 2007. From 16th April 2010 she has taken charge as Dean, Research & Consultancy at the Hyderabad Campus of BITS Dr. Kapur is a popular teacher at BITS, Pilani and has been instrumental in introducing several new courses, namely and has developed the curriculum for a new degree program “Master of Public Health”, incorporating learning through field visits and interdisciplinary teaching. Several students, trained by her have gone to make excellent careers for themselves as CEO’s of start up companies and faculty at some of the best institutions in USA. Dr. Kapur with her team of a dozen research scholars has been instrumental in building a state of the art Human Genomics laboratory from funds (Rs 363.19 lacs) received as Principal and/or Co-Investigator of now more than eighteen grants awarded since her joining BITS in 2004. As a mentor she has been able to motivate younger faculty to submit and execute independent grants in the form Women scientist (DST), Research Associate and senior research fellows (ICMR & CSIR). She has published more than 80 research articles in International and journals. Dr. Kapur’s research interests lie in identifying biomarkers for unraveling the genetic basis of human diseases such as psychiatric disorders like depression, schizophrenia, addiction and alzheimer’s disease and metabolic disorders such as diabetes (T2DM), obesity, cataract and metabolic syndrome. The group is specifically studying several genes,viz., APOE, CAPN, PPAR, ALDH2, ADH1B, ADH1C, OPRM1, OB, TPH, CRYGA, CRYGB, D2, D5, ADCY4, ADCY3, CCKAR, CCKBR, CFTR, CF508, SPNK-1, PS-1, CYP2E1, CTSB, HSP70, TNF, PRSS-1 and several micro-satellite markers on chromosome segments 2, 6 and 10. Chronic diseases have a long latency period and genetic markers can be effectively used for identifying individuals at an increased risk for developing these diseases and advocating appropriate lifestyle measures to delay the onset and progression of such diseases. On the other hand identification of specific disease associated protein markers play a pivotal role in early diagnosis and prognosis/follow up of any given disease. Ours is the first group to show that in the Indian population a mutation in the mu Opiate receptor is linked to risk for addiction to opiates and alcohol and a mutation in the Ob (leptin) gene is linked to hypertension in depressed subjects. Her group is also involved in developing clonal variants of Indian Medicinal plants and screening natural products for anti-diabetic, anti-inflammatory and anit-obesity activities. Strength of the group lies in under-taking work related to DNA, RNA and protein analysis using both in-vitro and in-vivo models. In-vitro, models constitute cell based assays using natural or derived cell lines, genetically modified cell lines and in-vivo studies hinge on animal models for specific diseases like diabetes, arthritis, etc. As Chief of Community Welfare and International Relations Unit Dr. Kapur has ably conducted the day to day activities of this unit and was instrumental in orchestrating several student exchanges introduction of new fellowships and opportunities for both students and faculty at BITS campuses.

Experience

Education

  • 1963 – 1974

    Cambridge School, Srinivaspuri, New Delhi

  • 1977 - 1980

    Medicine, All India Institute of Medical Sciences, New Delhi

    Biochemistry

  • 1981 – 1985

    Medicine, All India Institute of Medical Sciences, New Delhi

    Biochemistry

Edited Books

  • Immunosuppression - Role in Health and Diseases

    A need for a book on immunology which primarily focuses on the needs of medical and clinical research students was recognized. This book, "Immunosuppression - Role in Health and Diseases" is relatively short and contains topics relevant to the understanding of human immune system and its role in health and diseases. Immunosuppression involves an act that reduces the activation or efficacy of the immune system. Therapeutic immunosuppression has applications in clinical medicine, ranging from prevention and treatment of organ/bone marrow transplant rejection, management of autoimmune and inflammatory disorders. It brings important developments both in the field of molecular mechanisms involved and active therapeutic approaches employed for immunosuppression in various human disease conditions. There was a need to bring this information together in a single volume, as much of the recent developments are dispersed throughout biomedical literature, largely in specialized journals. This book will serve well the practicing physicians, surgeons and biomedical scientists as it provides an insight into various approaches to immunosuppression and reviews current developments in each area.

Publications