– Modeling infectious diseases

Our group develops mathematical models and simulations of the dynamics of infectious diseases with the goal of improving interventions. We have focussed on HIV, COVID-19 and TB, which pose major global healthcare challenges today. With HIV infections, we are interested in understanding how the immune system can be stimulated to control disease progression without the need for lifelong treatment. With COVID-19, we have developed models to predict the efficacies of vaccines and are interested in understanding the causes of the diverse severity of disease across individuals and the emergence of variants. With TB, we are interested in understanding pathogen evolution and the development of drug resistance. Our models span a wide range of length and time scales, from the molecular to the population level. We integrate descriptions of host-pathogen interactions, immune responses, pathogen evolution, drug pharmacokinetics and pharmacodynamics, and epidemiology. We employ both mechanistic and statistical learning approaches and work closely with experimentalists and clinicians.

 – Engineering microbial communities

Multispecies microbial communities are central to human health and disease and have applications in biotechnology. A major challenge is to elucidate principles for the design of stable synthetic microbial communities. Working closely with industry, we have developed mathematical models and algorithms to predict the structures of such communities. We are interested in devising strategies to tune the interactions between the underlying species and engineer community structures. The studies will aid the design of interventions targeting specific microbiomes, such as the use of probiotics or faecal transplants to restore our gut microbiomes.


10 Aug 2023:

Sayantani Garai (BSSE) has joined us for her MTech project. A very warm welcome to the group, Sayantani! 👋

25 Jul 2023:

Gaurav and Rubesh’s work on bacterial two-component signaling systems is now published in Nature Communications. Three cheers! 🍻

Update: The work was covered by The Times of India.

27 Jun 2023:

Pranesh’s work on cell entry of Omicron variant (SARS-CoV-2) is now out in Journal of Theoretical Biology. Congratulations! 🎊

13 Jun 2023:

Akshay’s commentary on evolution B cell responses in disease is now out in Journal of Biosciences. Way to go! 🎉