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Prof. Geetha Kumar


Prof. Geetha Kumar currently serves as a Professor at the School of Biotechnology.


Prof. Geetha Kumar obtained her Ph.D from the University of Tennessee, Memphis, USA, where she elucidated the structure-function activity of FadL, a bacterial Long Chain Fatty Acid binding protein. Following her Ph.D, Dr.Kumar did her post-doctoral studies under Dr. Neil Nathanson, at the University of Washington, Seattle, USA, on the regulation of Muscarinic Acetylcholine Receptor (mAChR). She was subsequently associated with Ceptyr Inc., a Biotech company where she worked in the High Throughput Screening (HTS) division that focused on developing drugs against Diabetes.

Dr. Kumar is currently a Professor at the School of Biotechnology, Amrita Vishwa Vidyapeetham, where she heads the Microbial Active Genetics lab. that is focused on studying the molecular mechanisms of antibiotic resistance in nosocomial gram-negative pathogens, such as Pseudomonas aeruginosa, Klebsiella pneumoniae, and Acinetobacter baumannii. Another area of related interest is the use phage biology and active genetics, to target the multidrug resistant (MDR) bacteria in order to revert antibiotic resistant to antibiotic sensitive phenotypes.

The primary research focus of the lab is on combating Antimicrobial Resistance using multiple approaches:

  • Screening Natural Products that can function as anti-quorum sensing agents and elucidating their mechanism of action
  • Isolation, characterization and application of bacteriophages or cocktails of phages for environmental as well as potential clinical use – phage therapy
  • Mutational analysis of the AMR genes of Pseudomonas aeruginosa
  • Phage-mediated gene drive using CRISPR-Cas9 to target the AMR genes of pathogens
  • Understanding Persistence and its role in antimicrobial resistance (AMR)
  • Studying the inter-relationship between virulence and antimicrobial resistance


Institution and Location Degree Year Field of Study
Chinoy College, Mumbai B.Sc. 1982 Microbiology
M.S. University, Baroda M.Sc. 1985 Microbiology
University of Tennessee, Memphis, USA Ph.D. 1992 Biochemistry & Molecular Biology
University of Washington, Seattle, USA Postdoc 1994 Pharmacology

Area of Specialization

Antimicrobial Resistance, Host Pathogen Interactions,  Pharmacology, Drug Discovery, Cancer Biology

Research Support

  • Grant funded in 2018 by The Tata Institute for Genetics and Society (TIGS): Reversal of antibiotic resistance in ESKAPE.
  • Grant funded in the Science Research Scheme (SRS),(2014) Kerala State Council for Science, Technology and Environment, Govt. Of Kerala:  Elucidating the Molecular Mechanisms of Anacardic Acid Mediated Regulation of Matrix Metalloproteinases in Cancer.

Positions and Honours

  • Research Fellow, 1994-1996, MDS Pharma, Seattle, Washington, USA.
  • Research Scientist, 1996 – 2004, Ceptyr Pharmaceuticals Inc., Seattle, Washington, USA.
  • Professor, 2007-Current, Amrita School of Biotechnology
  • Organizing and Program committee member, International Conference on Biotechnology for Innovative Applications (Amrita BioQuest  2013), Amritapuri, India.

Teaching Courses

  • Cell Biology
  • Cancer Biology
  • Advanced Pharmaceutical Biology
  • Advanced Discovery Biology
  • Research Methodology

Conference Paper

Ecdysterone Mediates Wound Healing in a Nitric Oxide Dependent Manner in 3T3L1 Fibroblasts.

Authors : Prof. Bipin Nair, Prof. Geetha Kumar, A. Omanakuttan, Dr. Geetha Kumar

Publisher : The XXXIX All India Cell Biology Conference

Conference Proceedings

Systematic Understanding of Anti-tumor Mechanisms of Tamarixetin through network and Experimental Analyses

Authors : Dr. Nandita Mishra, Prof. Bipin Nair, Prof. Geetha Kumar, Damu S., Anupama Binoy; Divya Nedungadi

Publisher : 39th Annual Conference of Indian Association for Cancer Research (IACR-2020): “Leading the Fight against Cancer”, Rajiv Gandhi Centre for Biotechnology (RGCB), Trivandrum

Role of AIF in Plumbagin induced Paraptosis-A caspase independent cell death in MDA-MB-231 cancer cells

Authors : Prof. Geetha Kumar, Prof. Bipin Nair, Dr. Nandita Mishra, Damu S., Anupama, Divya Nedungadi, Sanu K Shaji;

Publisher : 39th Annual Conference of Indian Association for Cancer Research (IACR-2020): “Leading the Fight against Cancer”, Rajiv Gandhi Centre for Biotechnology (RGCB), Trivandrum, Kerala, India

Journal Article

Oxyresveratrol Drives Caspase-Independent Apoptosis-like Cell Death in MDA-MB-231 Breast Cancer Cells through the Induction of ROS

Authors : Prof. Bipin Nair, Prof. Geetha Kumar, Dr. Nandita Mishra, Damu S., Drishya G., Chandrasekharan, A., Shaji, S. K., Chinchu Bose, Jossart, J., J. Jefferson P. Perry, Dr. Nandita Mishra, Dr. Geetha Kumar

Publisher : Biochem Pharmacol

A Novel2-Alkoxy-3, 5-Dihydroxypyridine Mediated Regulation of Gelatinases

Authors : Prof. Bipin Nair, Dr. Jyotsna Nambiar, Prof. Geetha Kumar, Sanjana S. R., Gorantla S. N., Lankalapalli R. S

Publisher : International Journal of Pharma and Bio Sciences

(I-3,II-3)-Biacacetin-mediated Cell Death involves Mitochondria

Authors : Prof. Bipin Nair, Prof. Geetha Kumar, Jyotsna Nambiar, Gayathri Vijayakumar, G. Drishya, Sanu K Shaji, Nanjan Pandurangan, Geetha B. Kumar

Publisher : Molecular and cellular biochemistry

Clove Bud Oil Modulates Pathogenicity Phenotypes of the Opportunistic Human Pathogen Pseudomonas aeruginosa.

Authors : Dr. Jayalekshmi H., Muralidharan V., Prof. Geetha Kumar, Omanakuttan, Athira; Menon, Nitasha D; Nair, Sudarslal Sadasivan; Corriden, Ross; Nair, Bipin G; Nizet, Victor; Kumar, Geetha B

Publisher : Sci Rep

Asymmetric distribution of muscarinic acetylcholine receptors in Madin-Darby canine kidney cells

Authors : Prof. Geetha Kumar, L. S. Nadler, Hinds, T. R., Migeon, J. C., and Nathanson, N. M.

Publisher : American Journal of Physiology-Cell Physiology

RECK and TIMP-2 mediate inhibition of MMP-2 and MMP-9 by Annona muricata

Authors : Dr. Sobha S. Nair, Damu S., Drishya G., Sanu K. Shaji, Prof. Geetha Kumar, Nambiar, J., Vanuopadath, M., Achuthan, A., Kumar, A., Alias, A., Sherif, A., Joseph, C., Divya, P., Kumar, D. Sunil, Bose, C., Sudarslal, S., Kumar, G. B., Lakshmi, S., and Nair, B. G

Publisher : Journal of Biosciences

Recent Insights into Natural Product inhibitors of Matrix Metalloproteinases

Authors : Prof. Bipin Nair, Prof. Geetha Kumar, J. Perry, J. P., and Martin, D. B. C.

Publisher : Med. Chem. Commun


Key pad for Medical Devices

Authors : Prof. Bipin Nair, Prof. Geetha Kumar, Eckherd Schaefer; Dr. Geetha Kumar

Publisher : The Patent Office, Government of India_ Certificate of Registration of Design

  • BIO400 / Cell Biology & Stem Cell Biology / 3 Credits /M.Sc. Biotechnology/M.Sc. Microbiology Semester 1
  • Cancer Biology / 3 Credits /M.Sc. Biotechnology/M.Sc. Microbiology
  • Advanced Pharmaceutical Biology / 3 Credits /M.Sc. Biotechnology/M.Sc. Microbiology
  • Advanced Discovery Biology / 3 Credits /M.Sc. Biotechnology/M.Sc. Microbiology
  • Research Methodology / 3 Credits /M.Sc. Biotechnology/M.Sc. Microbiology
Year Title
2012 Key pad for Medical Devices, Design No. 244105, The Patent Office, Government of India_ Certificate of Registration of Design, 2012.

Research Projects

Sl. No. Name of the Project Name of the Funding Agency Status On-going / Completed Project Grant / Assistance (Rs.) Duration of the Project Start Year
1. Insulin Pump DST Completed 4 crores 6 Years 2010
2. Wound Healing BMS Completed 30 Lakhs 4 Years 2012
3. Role of MMPs in Cancer Amrita Vishwa Vidyapeetham Completed 2 crores 4 Years 2012
4. Anacardic Acid and its derivatives as novel template for cancer therapy KSCSTE Completed 30 Lakhs 3 Years 2014
5. Reversal of antibiotic resistance in ESKAPE pathogens such as Pseudomonas aeruginosa TIGS On-going 3.6 crores 2 Years 2018
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