Sanjib Bhakta

Professor of Molecular Microbiology and Biochemistry at Birkbeck, University of London

Sanjib is Professor of Molecular Microbiology and Biochemistry at Birkbeck, and Head of the ISMB Mycobacteria Research Laboratory, as well as BITE-Professorial Fellow in Medical Biosciences and Cipla Distinguished Fellow in Pharmaceutical Sciences.

Sanjib and his research group work on global infectious diseases such as TB and international health challenges with antibiotic resistance. Despite a concerted global effort to prevent the spread of tuberculosis (TB), approximately 10 million new cases and 2 million deaths were reported in 2016. As many as 50 million people worldwide are currently infected with multi-drug resistant TB. His main research interests are focused around characterising the physiology of the different metabolic states of Mycobacterium spp., tackling antimicrobial resistance through validating novel therapeutic targets, from identifying hits to optimising novel leads and repurposing existing immunomodulatory drugs to cure TB.

Sanjib’s lab is specialised in molecular microbiology and biochemistry techniques to manipulate DNA, RNA, proteins and lipids to characterise therapeutic targets and elucidate their structure, function, regulation and inhibition. They have integrated high-throughput enzymatic and whole-cell phenotypic assays for screening biological properties of natural or synthetic chemical inhibitors of mycobacterial morphology, growth and viability in vitro as well as in infected macrophage models mimicking the intracellular host-environment. Their expertise in microbiology enables them to generate genetically-modified and/or chemically-derived mutants and perform phenotypic and genotypic evaluation on these infectious pathogens of global interest.