My research interest is in the evolution and extinction of plants. In particular I am interested in the role that Hydrogen Sulfide (H2S) plays in these processes. Currently I am studying the effects of H2S on plant growth, survivability and the photosystems.
Current education: Graduate student - Advisor: Peter Ward
Previous education: Bachelors of Arts & Bachelors of Science (2009) University of Washington
My lab studies the cytoskeleton of Giardia intestinalis. Giardia is an important parasite that affects a wide variety of animal hosts, including over 100 million (mostly impoverished) people each year. Treatment options are limited; therefore, the WHO has recognized giardiasis as a neglected disease. In addition to Giardia being a major parasite, this organism stands out as one of the most evolutionary divergent eukaryotes (from animals) that can be manipulated in the laboratory. While the majority of microtubule cytoskeleton components can be identified in the Giardia genome, none ofthe core set of homologous actin-binding proteins (e.g.: nucleators, motors, bundling, and severing proteins), can be found in Giardia. Yet, the Giardia actin cytoskeleton still has complex organization and is regulated by G-protein signaling. Moreover, the Giardia actin cytoskeletonhas a conserved role in cellular organization, trafficking, and cytokinesis (novel mechanism without contractile ring or midbody). Importantly the giardial actin cytoskeleton is both essential and highly divergent from that of humans; therefore, it represents an important potential target for treating this neglected disease and an opportunity to gain insight into evolution of the cytoskeleton.
POSTDOC POSITION AVAILABLE please send your CV to apply.
Interaction with the environment is central to how information within our DNA is decoded into observable phenotypes. Dr. Baliga and his laboratory are using a multidisciplinary systems approach to understand this process. Once delineated the engineering principles governing assembly of biological systems will help unlock potentials within diverse organisms. By responsibly using this information we will be able to power spectacular solutions for problems in environment and medicine. Dr. Baliga is an Affiliate Professor in the Department of Biology at UW and a Professor at the Institute for Systems Biology, where he also serves as Senior Vice President and Director. He did his early schooling in Mumbai, India, where he received a B.Sc. in Microbiology (1992) from Ruia College. He also has a M.Sc. in Marine Biotechnology (1994) from Goa University, and a Ph.D. in Microbiology from University of Massachusetts at Amherst (2000). Dr. Baliga's graduate work was supported by two highly coveted awards from the Central Government of India including the Department of Biotechnology studentship, as well as the Council for Scientific and Industrial Research fellowship. Dr. Baliga's work has been featured in The Scientist, Genome Web, Wired magazine, Genetic Engineering News, Ars Technica, Xconomy, and Nature Methods, among many others. His research has been supported by the National Science Foundation, National Institutes of Health, NASA, Department of Energy, and the Department of Defense. He is the Section Editor of BMC Systems Biology, serves on scientific advisory boards of numerous academic and industrial organizations, and has been instrumental in research program planning for the NSF, US Army, ARPA-E and DOE. Dr. Baliga is also actively engaged in bringing innovative inquiry-based curriculum on current science concepts to high schools throughout the United States. In 2012 he was the recipient of the Alvin J. Thompson award in recognition of his contributions to HS education. His primary goal is to develop mind stimulating lessons that will prepare a new generation of scientists.