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Department of Immunology
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Faculty
 
saumendraNSarkar.png Saumendra N. Sarkar , Ph.D.
Assistant Professor of Microbiology & Molecular Genetics
1.8 Hillman Cancer Center
5117 Centre Avenue
Pittsburgh, PA 15213-1862
Phone: 412-623-7720
Email: saumen@pitt.edu
Fax: 412-624-1401
Faculty Research Interests
Personal Web Page
 
Research Interests
Innate immunity of an organism is the inborn protection against invading pathogens. Because it is inborn, and entrusted with the protection of host from a vast array of previously unknown invaders, the innate immune system generates a generalized alert response upon pathogen detection. This alert is chemically mediated by a class of molecules called Cytokines. A critical task for this host protection system is to distinguish foreign or non-self, from self, and initiate their destruction or containment. The sensors or the receptors of the innate immune system accomplish this by recognizing specific molecular patterns, which are common to pathogens or pathogen associated molecules, but absent in the host. We focus on a particular subset of these sensors/receptors, which are involved in sensing virus infection.

We study four related aspects of innate immunity:
(A) The signaling process involved in cytokine production after virus infection.
(B) Develop modulators for these signaling pathways.
(C) How virus evade host innate immune response? and
(D) The contribution of innate immune response in cancer
 
Education
1987 BS Presidency College, University of Calcutta, Calcutta, India

1990 MS University College of Science and Technology, University of Calcutta, Calcutta, India

1995 PhD Molecular Biophysics Unit, Indian Institute of Science, Bangalore, India
 
Academic Affiliation
Member, Immunology Graduate Program

Member, Molecular Virology And Microbiology Graduate Program

Assistant Professor, Dept. of Microbiology and Molecular Genetics University of Pittsburgh

Assistant Professor, Dept. of Immunology University of Pittsburgh

Member, Cancer Virology Program University of Pittsburgh Cancer Institute
 
Selected Publications
Zhu, J., Smith, K., Hsieh, P.N., Mburu, Y. K., Chattopadhyay, S., Sen, G.C. and Sarkar, S.N. (2010) A high throughput screening for TLR3-IRF3 signaling pathway modulators identifies several antipsychotic drugs as TLR inhibitors. J. Immunol. 184, 5768-76.

Zhu, J., Coyne, C.B. and Sarkar, S.N. (2011) PKC alpha regulates Sendai virus mediated Interferon induction through HDAC6 and beta-catenin. EMBO J. 30, 4838-49.

Umemura, N., Zhu, J., Mburu, Y.K., Forero, A., Hsieh, P.N., Muthuswamy, R., Kalinski, P., Ferris, R.L. and Sarkar, S.N. (2011) Defective NF-kB signaling in metastatic head and neck cancer cells leads to enhanced apoptosis by double-stranded RNA. Cancer Res. 72, 4555

Zhu, J., Ghosh, A., Coyle, E.M., Lee, J., Hahm, E.R., Singh, S.V. and Sarkar, S.N. (2013) Differential effects of phenethyl isothiocyanate and D,L-sulforaphane on Toll-like receptor 3 signaling. J Immunol. 190, 4400-7.

Zhu, J., Ghosh, A., Coyle, E.M., Lee, J., Hahm, E.R., Singh, S.V. and Sarkar, S.N. (2013) Differential effects of phenethyl isothiocyanate and D,L-sulforaphane on Toll-like receptor 3 signaling. J Immunol. 190, 4400-7.
 
Grants
Title: Novel Modifiers of Toll-like and RIG-like Receptor Signaling.
Agency: NIH/NIAID
Role: PI
Funding Period: 03/15/2009 - 02/28/2014
 
Lab Personnel
Research Associate
Jianzhong Zhu

Graduate Student
Adriana Forero
Kevin McCormick
 
 


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