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Kaapi with Kuriosity
Sumantra Chattarji (Senior Professor, NCBS-TIFR, Bengaluru & Visiting Professor, Simons Initiative for the Developing Brain, University of Edinburgh, UK)
4:00 pm to 5:30 pm Sunday, 07 November 2021
Livestream via the ICTS YouTube channel

Neurodevelopmental disorders are a major and growing public health challenge. Uniformly, the unmet need is for a human-based approach to investigating the causes, consequences and ultimately treatment of these diseases. A major hurdle in discovering new brain medicines is due to the inability to take biopsies and thus study living brain tissue, as well as limitations of current animal models. Hence, the need is to use living human brain cells to study the functional effects of disease. To this end, I will present new findings from human pluripotent stem cells generated from individuals affected by Fragile X Syndrome (FXS), the leading genetic cause of autism spectrum disorders and intellectual disability.

About the Speaker:-
Sumantra Chattarji received his Master’s degree in Physics from the Indian Institute of Technology, Kanpur. He then went on to do a Ph.D. in Neuroscience at the Johns Hopkins University and Salk Institute. After post-doctoral research at Yale University and MIT, he started his own laboratory at the National Centre for Biological Sciences, Tata Institute of Fundamental Research, Bangalore, India in 1999. His research has shown that prolonged stress leaves its mark by enhancing both the physiological and structural basis of synaptic connectivity in the amygdala, thereby triggering the emotional symptoms observed in stress-related psychiatric disorders. His lab also studies synaptic defects and their reversal in Fragile X Syndrome, the leading identified cause of autism. Prof. Chattarji was recently awarded the Global Champion Award by the Fragile X Research Foundation, USA. He is also a Fellow of the Indian Academy of Sciences and International Union of Physiological Sciences, and a member of EMBO.