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I am an Indian evolutionary biologist who lives in Sweden. This website presents glimpses of my work, both within and outside academia.

Since July 2021, I have been a postdoctoral fellow at the Lind Lab at Umeå University (Sweden), supported generously by the Wenner-Gren Foundations. I am currently developing two distinct projects:


1. To determine if phenotypic plasticity can prime bacteria for the evolution of a multicellular lifestyle [Model organisms: Escherichia coli and Staphylococcus aureus | We have a new preprint on this work]

2. To forecast the evolution of antibiotic resistance in pathogenic bacteria by empirically determining mutation biases across diverse resistance mechanisms and mapping them to their fitness effects [Model organism: Pseudomonas aeruginosa]

While pursuing my PhD at the Population Biology Lab (PBL) at IISER Pune (India), I became fascinated by the interactions of mutation, drift and selection in organismal populations. I used combinations of bacterial experimental evolution, population-wide genomics, and agent-based simulations to study the following:

  • The effects of population size on adaptation and fitness trade-offs

  • The population genetics of divergent character evolution in identical environments

  • How and why the costs of adaptation are shaped by the interactions of population size and environmental fluctuations

(Please visit the Publications and Talks pages for more details of my academic work.)

Brief bio

  • July 2021 - present: Postdoctoral Fellow (Department of Molecular Biology, Umeå University, Sweden)

  • September 2019 - June 2021: Postdoctoral Research Associate (IISER Pune, India)

  • August 2013 - September 2019: PhD in Evolutionary Biology (IISER Pune, India)

  • September 2012 - July 2013: Research Assistant (PBL; IISER Pune, India)

  • July 2007 - June 2012: Integrated Masters in Biotechnology (Institute of Bioinformatics and Biotechnology (IBB), University of Pune, India)


20 September 2022

New preprint:

Bacteria evolve macroscopic multicellularity via the canalization of phenotypically plastic cell clustering

The first preprint from my (ongoing) postdoc with Peter Lind is now online! I had made the initial discovery in 2013 and had been waiting for the right opportunity to test my ideas and develop this line of work. This is my first publication as a corresponding author. Here's a time-lapse movie from this preprint:








14-19 August 2022

ESEB 2022 in Prague

It was a great experience in Prague, where I got an opportunity to give a talk about my recent work in front of a very large audience. I talked about how bacteria evolve macroscopic multicellularity via the canalization of phenotypically plastic cell clustering. The preprint based on this work will be out soon! I also had several detailed discussions about my projects there. [My abstract can be found on page 196 in the Book of Abstracts]

2 August 2022

SMBE Everywhere global symposium on mutation biases

It was real fun to present an online talk on "Empirically determining mutation biases to predict the evolution of antibiotic resistance" in front of a large global audience in a completely environment friendly manner! The organizers had done a great job of employing an interactive platform for talks and detailed one-on-one discussions. [The abstract of my talk]

12 July 2022

Received the review reports for the last manuscript based on my work with Sarthak and Sutirth

Although our manuscript has not been accepted yet, it feels very good to receive minutely detailed reviews that are largely positive and encouraging. We are optimistic!

Escherichia coli growing as an elongated multicellular cluster under a highly saline environment

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