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Building Bharat-Boston Biosciences (B4) Program

Boston Bangalore Biosciences Beginnings (B4) Program 

In the first edition of the B4 Program, from 2016–2018, four Science and Technology Fellowships were offered in fields related to the biosciences at Harvard University and other institutions in the Boston area. The four Fellows selected from a pool of 52 applications worked in local laboratories related to their fields, including bioinformatics, biomedical engineering, genomics, neuroscience, and synthetic biology.

The mission of this program was to nurture useful progress in the field of biosciences, including biotechnology, through the development of partnerships with leading universities and by engaging scientists from India and Harvard through exchange programs.  

This program is a collaboration between the Institute of Bioinformatics and Applied Biotechnology (IBAB) in Bangalore, the Harvard Global Research Support Centre India, and the Lakshmi Mittal and Family South Asia Institute at Harvard University in Cambridge, MA. It is supported by the Department of Biotechnology, Government of India and Department of Information Technology & Biotechnology and Science and Technology, Government of Karnataka. 

The program built upon the Resonance Program, a collaboration between MIT, Harvard, and IIT Delhi.


Gayatri Ramakrishnan

Computational Biology

Home Institution: Indian Institute of Science, Bangalore
Faculty Mentor: Martha Bulyk, Professor of Medicine

At Harvard, Ramakrishnan researched the structural basis of DNA-binding specificity of transcription factors. Today, Ramakrishnan is a scientific collaborator at Harvard Medical School with Professor Bulyk. She is also a freelance scientific consultant and editor.

Parvathi Madathil Sreekumar

Plant Abiotic Stress Physiology and Molecular and Cellular Biology

Home Institution: University of Agricultural Sciences, Bangalore
Faculty Mentor: Philippe Cluzel, Professor of Molecular and Cellular Biology

At Harvard, Sreekumar’s worked to extend the principal idea of optimization of gene/protein expression levels in the eukaryotic system. Today, Sreekumar is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Plant Physiology at the College of Horticulture at Kerala Agricultural University.


Praveen Anand

Computational Biology

Home Institution: inStem, National Centre for Biological Sciences
Faculty Mentor: Sean Eddy, Ellmore C. Patterson Professor of Molecular and Cellular Biology and of Applied Mathematics

At Harvard, Anand explored the avenues of handling, analysis, and interpretation of high-throughput next-gen sequencing data. Today, Anand is a Research Fellow at the Dana-Farber Cancer Institute.


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Ramya Purkanti

Evolutionary Cell Biology

Home Institution: National Center for Biological Sciences (NCBS), Bengaluru
Faculty Mentor: Michael Desai, Professor of Organismic and Evolutionary Biology and of Physics

At Harvard, Purkanti worked on the experimental evolution of yeast populations as they adapt to nutritional stress. Today, Purkanti is a Postdoctoral Fellow with Dr. Nadine Vastenhouw at the Max Planck Institute of Molecular Cell Biology and Genetics in Dresden, Germany.