Balaram Ghosh
Associate Investigator, Non-Resident Member

Birla Institute of Technology & Science (BITS)-Pilani, Hyderabad Campus

Prof. Ghosh received his PhD from Wayne State University, Detroit, Michigan, and worked as postdoctoral research fellow in a Neurochemical Biology Lab at Mass General Hospital (MGH), Boston, USA. He was awarded with “Frank O. Taylor Best Graduate Student Fellowship” by the Department of Pharmaceutical Sciences at Wayne State University for outstanding performance in research and graduate studies. 

He is currently Associate Professor in the Department of Pharmacy, and Principal Investigator of Epigenetic Research Laboratory, BITS-Pilani Hyderabad Campus, India. His laboratory research involves exploring and understanding biological systems at the molecular level using the toolset offered by modern chemistry. His work falls in the interface of organic chemistry and cell biology, and precisely on the manipulation of cellular activity with bio-active molecules. His Lab believes that the discovery of the right bioactive molecules finds an equal challenge in the delivery of the molecules to the particular sites of action. 

Dr. Ghosh’s focus falls on the (i) Development of subtype specific histone deacetylase (HDAC) inhibitors/activators as epigenetic modulators (mainly potent and isoform selective HDAC inhibitors with fairly acceptable blood brain barrier permeability) to understand the individual isoform of HDAC that turns on or turns off the transcription machineries of the genes responsible for improving cognition, memory and mood stabilization in patients suffering from depression and dementia. (ii) Exploration of isoform selective small molecule epigenetic modulators as the emerging treatment strategy to combat different forms of cancer. (iii) Development of biocompatible polymeric drug delivery cargo drawing from polymer chemistry/organic chemistry to bring the drugs at the site of action with less off-target side effects, and collaborating with drug delivery experts for the same. 

Dr. Ghosh’s work in the field of epigenetic modulation to combat pathogenesis of various diseases has attracted R&D funds from different funding agencies of the Government of India such as DST, SERB, DBT, CSIR, DHR, ICMR, as well as from the major players in the Indian Pharmaceutical Industry like SUN PHARMA and Dr. REDDY’S LAB. His research contributions have been published in many peer reviewed journals including Journal of Medicinal Chemistry, European Journal of Medicinal Chemistry, Bioorganic Chemistry, Journal of Pharmacological Research, Nature Chemical Biology, Nature Communication, Leukemia (Nature), ACS Chemical Neuroscience etc. BG45, one of his HDAC3 selective molecules, developed at Mass General Hospital (MGH) USA, is currently being marketed by Merck/Sigma-Aldrich. The group has also filed seventeen Indian Patents till date and five of the patents have been awarded.