Riddhiman Dhar

Ph.D., University of Zurich, Switzerland

Assistant Professor Grade-I

Bioscience and Biotechnology



Research Areas

Biological systems are complex with thousands of cellular components and are dynamic in nature. Our lab is excited about exploring and understanding the inner workings of complex biological systems and evolution of such systems. We are also interested in applying our understanding for betterment of human health. One of the aspects we are interested in is the evolution of drug resistance. Drug resistance is a major crisis worldwide with emergence of human pathogens that are resistant to multiple drugs. In addition, drug resistance has also been observed in cancer. One of our major goals is to understand the cellular processes that generate resistance in great detail from a systems-level perspective. Such an understanding can help us design better treatment strategies and can help minimize resistance evolution. A second interest of the lab is to understand the causes of phenotypic heterogeneity in isogenic populations. Genetically identical cells in a cell population, be it a microbial or cancer cell population, in identical environment often exhibit a wide variety of phenotypes. Our goal is to elucidate the molecular mechanisms underlying such phenotypic heterogeneity. 
Our work is highly interdisciplinary in nature. In addition to basic microbiology and molecular biology techniques, we use FACS, fluorescence microscopy, Next Generation Sequencing, computational techniques and mathematical modelling to address our research questions. 

Open positions: I am looking for talented and motivated Postdocs and PhD students in computational domains. Applicants with backgrounds in Biological Sciences, Bioinformatics, Physics, Mathematics, Computer Science, Mechanical Engineering and Microfluidics with an interest in understanding complexity of biological systems are welcome to apply. If you are interested in joining the lab, please email me your CV along with a brief statement of your research interest. We are also happy to support applications for diverse fellowships for PhD students and postdocs. 
  • Transcription factor binding process is the primary driver of noise in gene expression Parab L., Pal S. , Dhar R. By PLoS Genetics 18 e10105-e10105 (2022)
  • Yeast adapts to a changing stressful environment by evolving cross-protection and anticipatory gene regulation. Riddhiman Dhar, Rudolf Sägesser, Christian Weikert and Andreas Wagner. By Molecular Biology and Evolution 30 573-588 (2013)
  • EpICC: A Bayesian neural network model with uncertainty correction for a more accurate classification of cancer Joshi P., Dhar R. By Scientific Reports 12 14628-14628 (2022)
  • Designer bacterial cell factories for improved production of commercially valuable non-ribosomal peptides Mitra S., Dhar R. , Sen R. By Biotechnology Advances 60 108023-108023 (2022)
  • A large-scale computational screen identifies strong potential inhibitors for disrupting SARS-CoV-2 S-protein and human ACE2 interaction Singh A., Dhar R. By Journal of Biomolecular Structure and Dynamics - (2021)
  • A two-step PCR assembly for construction of gene variants across large mutational distances Routh S., Acharyya A., Dhar R. By Biology Methods and Protocols 6 - (2021)
  • Changes in gene expression predictably shift and switch genetic interactions. Li X., Lalic J. , Baeza-centurion P. , Dhar R. , Lehner B. By Nature Communications 10 3886- (2019)
  • Single cell functional genomics reveals the importance of mitochondria in cell-to-cell phenotypic variation Dhar R., Missarova A. M., Lehner B. , Carey L. B. By eLife 8 - (2019)
  • A Concentration-Dependent Liquid Phase Separation Can Cause Toxicity upon Increased Protein Expression Bolognesi B., Gotor N. L., Dhar R. , Cirillo D. , Baldrighi M. , Tartaglia G. G., Lehner B. By Cell Reports 16 222-231 (2016)
  • Slow growing cells within isogenic populations have increased RNA polymerase error rates and DNA damage. David van Dijk, Riddhiman Dhar, Alsu Missarova, Lorena Espinar, Will Blevins, Ben Lehner, and Lucas Carey. By Nature Communications 6 - (2015)

Co-Principal Investigator

  • CRISPR/Ca9 mediated genome engineering in industrially relevant non-conventional yeast Kluyveromyces marxianus for enhanced fatty alcohol production DBT, NEW DELHI
  • Hollow microneedle-based drug delivery and solid dissolvable microneedle-based vaccine delivery devices Indian Council of Medical Research (ICMR)
  • Understanding Structure Function and Evolution of Regulatory Networks with a Special Emphasis on Human Diseases-BIC at Department of Biotechnology, IIT-Kharagpur DBT, NEW DELHI

Ph. D. Students

Anamika Acharyya

Area of Research: Epistatic interactions

Arkaprava Datta

Area of Research: MEMS based micro-fluidic systems for drug delivery

Rakesh Mandal

Area of Research: Systems Biology

Sampriti Pal

Area of Research: Systems Biology

Sayak Mitra

Area of Research: Gene and Process Scale Engineering

Shreya Routh

Area of Research: Systems Biology

Subhasis Datta

Area of Research: Gene Regulation

Swarnava Garai

Area of Research: Bioinformatics and Computational Biology

Upasana Ray

Area of Research: Computational Systems Biology