Principal Investigator, Mechanobiology Institute, IFOM-NUS Chair Professor, National University of Singapore
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National University of Singapore
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In the News
- Today Online: Study to detect cancer before symptoms develop shows promise
- Straits Times: NUS research: Squeezing mature cells to become stem cells
- Channel News Asia: Becoming Human, Episode 2: Unnatural Genius
The Shivashankar Lab is hiring multiple PhD and Postdoctoral positions starting in Jan 2020. Learn more.
MBI Deputy Director Professor GV Shivashankar has been elected as an Associate Member of EMBO (the European Molecular Biology Organization) making him the first scientist from NUS, and only the third Singapore-based Scientist, to be elected to the prestigious EMBO membership.
MBI Principal Investigator and Deputy Director Professor GV Shivashankar is featured in the Channel News Asia documentary series, Becoming Human: Unnatural Genius to discuss how his lab uses AI and and nuclear mechanogenomic architecture to detect early stage cancer cells.
Researchers turn mature cells into stem cells using mechanical cues alone
Nuclear mechanics, 3D chromosome organization, genome regulation, disease diagnostics
Nuclear Mechanogenomics & Cancer Diagnostics Laboratory
Shivashankar’s lab pursues research in understanding the role of cell mechanics on nuclear mechanotransduction and genome regulation.
Extra-cellular micro-environmental signals are transduced to the nucleus to regulate diverse biological processes including cellular differentiation, development and homeostasis; but the underlying mechanisms are still unclear. In this context, how such micro-environmental signals alter nuclear mechanical architecture and how it integrates with the 3D organization of chromosomes and transcription networks are rather unexplored. Using a multidisciplinary approach combining high resolution optical imaging, quantitative single-cell biology, machine learning and functional genomics, our laboratory investigates the principles underlying the coupling between nuclear mechanics and genome regulation. Our recent and ongoing work provides modular links between cellular geometry and nuclear mechanics and its impact on transcription dependent 3D organization of chromosomes and reprogramming. Such modular links define the normal state of cells and are altered during diseases. Hence our studies also have profound impact on developing single-cell nuclear biomechanical markers for early disease diagnosis and therapeutic intervention.
Shivashankar is a principal investigator at the Mechanobiology Institute, National University of Singapore. His laboratory is focused on understanding the role of cell mechanics on nuclear mechanotransduction and genome regulation in living cells using a multi-disciplinary approach. He carried out his PhD research at the Rockefeller University (1994-1999) and Postdoctoral research at NEC Research Institute, Princeton USA (1999-2000). He started his laboratory at the National Center for Biological Sciences, TIFR- Bangalore, India (2000-2009) before relocating to a tenured faculty position at the National University of Singapore in 2009. He was the Deputy Director of the Mechanobiology Institute (2011-2019). More recently he also heads a joint research laboratory with the FIRC Institute of Molecular Oncology (IFOM), Milan, Italy and was appointed as an IFOM-NUS Chair Professor in 2014. His scientific awards include the Birla Science Prize (2006), the Swarnajayanthi Fellowship (2007), and he was elected to the Indian Academy of Sciences (2010) and to the EMBO membership (2019). He will be relocating to a tenured Full Professorship at ETH Zurich jointly with the Paul Scherrer Institute, Switzerland, to start the Laboratory of Mechano-Genomics in January 2020.
PhD The Rockefeller University, USA
Mechanobiology Institute, Ministry of Education Tier-3 Co-Investigator Grant & IFOM-MBI Joint Research Laboratory, Singapore.
- Damodaran K, Crestani M, Jokhun DS, and Shivashankar GV. Nuclear morphometrics and chromatin condensation patterns as disease biomarkers using a mobile microscope. PLoS ONE 2019; 14(7):e0218757. [PMID: 31314779]
- Alisafaei F, Jokhun DS, Shivashankar GV, and Shenoy VB. Regulation of nuclear architecture, mechanics, and nucleocytoplasmic shuttling of epigenetic factors by cell geometric constraints. Proc. Natl. Acad. Sci. U.S.A. 2019;. [PMID: 31209017]
- Shivashankar GV. Mechanical regulation of genome architecture and cell-fate decisions. Curr. Opin. Cell Biol. 2018; 56:115-121. [PMID: 30554028]
- Damodaran K, Venkatachalapathy S, Alisafaei F, Radhakrishnan AV, Sharma Jokhun D, Shenoy VB, and Shivashankar GV. Compressive force induces reversible chromatin condensation and cell geometry dependent transcriptional response. Mol. Biol. Cell 2018;:mbcE18040256. [PMID: 30256731]
- Jokhun DS, Shang Y, and Shivashankar GV. Actin Dynamics Couples Extracellular Signals to the Mobility and Molecular Stability of Telomeres. Biophys. J. 2018;. [PMID: 30224051]
- Singh Vishen A, Rupprecht J, Shivashankar GV, Prost J, and Rao M. Soft inclusion in a confined fluctuating active gel. Phys Rev E 2018; 97(3-1):032602. [PMID: 29776019]
- Roy B, Venkatachalapathy S, Ratna P, Wang Y, Jokhun DS, Nagarajan M, and Shivashankar GV. Laterally confined growth of cells induces nuclear reprogramming in the absence of exogenous biochemical factors. Proc. Natl. Acad. Sci. U.S.A. 2018;. [PMID: 29735717]
- Uhler C, and Shivashankar GV. Nuclear Mechanopathology and Cancer Diagnosis. Trends Cancer 2018; 4(4):320-331. [PMID: 29606315]
- Makhija E, Jagielska A, Zhu L, Bost AC, Ong W, Chew SY, Shivashankar GV, and Van Vliet KJ. Mechanical Strain Alters Cellular and Nuclear Dynamics at Early Stages of Oligodendrocyte Differentiation. Front Cell Neurosci 2018; 12:59. [PMID: 29559894]
- Rupprecht J, Singh Vishen A, Shivashankar GV, Rao M, and Prost J. Maximal Fluctuations of Confined Actomyosin Gels: Dynamics of the Cell Nucleus. Phys. Rev. Lett. 2018; 120(9):098001. [PMID: 29547335]