On 1st November 2017, Prof. K. N. Ganesh has been appointed as founder director of Indian Institute of Science Education and Research (IISER) Tirupati

About the Director

Krishna N Ganesh (born 1953) obtained B.Sc (1970) and M.Sc (1972) degrees in Chemistry from Bangalore University and did his Ph.D (1976) in Chemistry at Delhi University. He was awarded a Commonwealth Fellowship to pursue higher studies at the University of Cambridge, UK that resulted in another Ph.D degree in 1980. He joined the Centre for Cellular and Molecular Biology (CSIR), Hyderabad in 1981. There, he established India's first microsynthesis DNA facility, initiating a vigorous research programme to discover new motifs of DNA-protein interactions. In 1987, he relocated to National Chemical Laboratory (NCL-CSIR) where he became the Head of Organic Chemistry Division in 1994. He was chosen as the First Director of the newly founded IISER Pune in 2006 and IISER Tirupati in November, 2017. Prof. Ganesh has made excellent research contributions to the chemistry and biology of nucleic acids, focusing on therapeutic and diagnostic applications of DNA analogues, structural biology of collagen peptides and the emerging area of DNA nanotechnology. He is internationally recognized for his creative contributions to the design of Peptide Nucleic Acid (PNA) analogues for effective cell permeation.

Prof. Ganesh is a Fellow of all 3 Science Academies in India and also a Fellow of The World Academy of Sciences (TWAS). He served as the President of Division of Organic and Biomolecular Chemistry of IUPAC (2012-2013). Prof. Ganesh has received innumerable professional awards, the most important ones being Shanti Swarup Bhatnagar award of Chemical Sciences (CSIR) and TWAS Prize for Chemical Sciences, SASTRA-CNR Rao Award of SASTRA University (2015) and H K Firodia Vijnan Bhushan Award (2015). He has served as Member of various policy-making and Project Advisory Committees of Department of Science & Technology (DST) and Department of Biotechnology (DBT), Government of India. He is currently the Chairman of Bionanoscience Committee of DST Nanoscience mission and Lady Tata memorial trust. He has been appointed as Principal and Founding Editor for ACS Omega, the first open Access mega journal of American Chemical Society. He has been also appointed as Chairperson on RAAC of INST Mohali and Member of Governing Council of Association of Indian University.

Foremost, as the First and Founding Director of IISER Pune and IISER Tirupati, Prof. Ganesh provided great leadership in Institution building to establish IISERs as brand science education and research institutes, now attaining international recognition.

Research: During his stay at NCL for 19 years, he established an internationally reputed school of research in therapeutic and diagnostic applications of oligonucleotide analogues, especially Peptide Nucleic Acids (PNA). He has also worked on the structural biology of collagen peptides and in the emerging area of DNA nanotechnology. His work has been well recognized internationally through invitations to lecture at prestigious scientific meetings such as Gordon Conferences, IUPAC Symposia, IRT in Nucleosides and Nucleotides, Pacifichem Meetings, etc. He has published around 150 research papers in internationally reputed journals and guided 23 students for their Ph.D. degrees.

Memberships:  Prof. Ganesh has served on several important national and international committees such as Programme Advisory Committee (Organic Chemistry); Committee for Funds for Infrastructure Development in Science and Technology, New Delhi; Thrust Area Programme in Basic Biology; Scientific Advisory Committee on Resource-specific Network Programme, Department of Biotechnology, New Delhi (2005-2008); Chairman, Indian Advisory Committee, Lady Tata Memorial Fellowship, Mumbai; Editorial Committee of Proceedings (Indian Academy of Sciences); Indian Journal of Chemistry, CSIR, New Delhi; Member, Expert Committee on DST Initiative on Nanoscience and Technology (since 2005); President, Division III (Organic and Biomolecular Chemistry) of International Pure and Applied Chemistry (2012-2013); Member, Editorial Advisory Board of Journal of Organic Chemistry (American Chemical Society); Member, Editorial Board, Chemistry-Asian Journal (Wiley, Germany); Artificial DNA: PNA & XNA (Landes Biosciences, USA); Beilstein Journal of Organic Chemistry and Oligonucleotides (Mary Ann Liebert Inc, USA); Nature Scientific Report (NPG, London).

Awards and Honours: Prof. Ganesh has received a number of recognitions in the field of science including the prestigious Shanti Swarup Bhatnagar Prize in Chemical Sciences (1998) (highest scientific recognition in India for scientists below the age of 45 years); Millennium Medal of Indian Science Congress (2000); Silver Medal of Chemical Research Society of India (2004); the TWAS Prize in Chemical Sciences (2006); and the SASTRA-CNR Rao Award, SASTRA University (2015). He is a Fellow of the Indian Academy of Sciences, Bangalore; Indian National Science Academy, New Delhi; National Academy of Sciences, Allahabad; Academy of Sciences for Developing World (TWAS); and the JC Bose National Fellowship, Department of Science & Technology, New Delhi.

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