Research Areas At DRILS

Medicinal Chemistry

Medicinal chemistry relates to the design, synthesis and pharmacological evaluation of compounds leading to the identification of NCEs (New Chemical Entities) that can be developed as medicine for the prevention, treatment or cure of human and animal diseases. At DRILS we are focusing on discovery / identification of NCEs in the area of tuberculosis, obesity, psoriasis, inflammation and cancer. The MOA of some of these NCEs involve interactions with novel pharmacological targets.

Names of Faculty involved in this area: Prof Manojit Pal, Dr. Ramesh Samineni, Dr. Marina Rajadurai

Rare Diseases

Rare diseases, though individually rare, affect a large fraction of our population. There is a growing realization of the need for effective, affordable and accessible therapies and/or management strategies for rare diseases in India. Rare disease research is a key focus area at DRILS. Activities include a) model creation and fundamental research for a diverse set of diseases b) chemistry approaches for drug development and c) drug repurposing. We are interested in working with the industry, clinicians and academics towards making the most impactful contribution in rapidly moving treatments to rare disease patients.

Metabolic Syndrome

Metabolic syndrome is a cluster of different abnormalities such as insulin resistance, abdominal obesity, hypertension and dyslipidemia. It increases the risk for the development of Type 2 Diabetes and cardiovascular manifestations such as coronary artery disease. Global prevalence of metabolic syndrome is quite alarming necessitating development of better therapeutic strategies. Metabolic disease research at DRILS focusses on i) identification of novel mechanistic disease insights– identification and validation of targets ii) strategies for improved incretin mediated insulin secretion iii) pre-clinical drug discovery.

Names of Faculty involved in this area: Dr. Kishore Parsa, Prof. Parimal Mishra, Dr. Prasenjit Mitra

Zebrafish research at DRILS has two focus areas with the following objectives: 1. To develop and validate zebrafish models of pharmacology and toxicology; and; to understand translatability to pharmaceutical research, including models for toxicology, pharmacology, pharmacokinetics and various disease models. 2. To create transgenic zebrafish lines using gene editing techniques and use these to investigate gene and protein function in vivo.

Names of Faculty involved in this area: Dr. Kiranam Chatti, Dr. Pushkar Kulkarni


We believe that rapid development of nanotechnology will have a significant impact on major challenges in biology and chemistry. Our contribution to this field lies in areas of drug delivery, molecular imaging, and catalysis. We are interested in development of the methods to manipulate structure and properties of organic, inorganic and hybrid nanomaterials capable of novel innovative applications.

Names of Faculty involved in this area: Dr. Marina Rajadurai


Tyrosine kinases are a major family of messengers in cell growth pathways. Drugs selectively inhibiting oncogenic tyrosine kinases (tyrosine kinase inhibitors or TKIs) have been shown to be clinically successful as targeted anti-cancer therapies. Access to TKIs in India and in several other countries is severely limited; evolution of drug resistance and occurrence of variant TKs is a problem. Cancer research at DRILS is focused on i) using CRISPR-Cas9 to develop genetically engineered TK-mutant zebrafish as alternative animal models to facilitate in vivo evaluation of TKIs, and ii) using computational and experimental methods to study TK variants.

Names of Faculty involved in this area: Dr. Kiranam Chatti