Department: Comparative Biomedical Sciences

Campus: Camden

Research Groups: Brain Health and Behaviour, Cardiovascular and Inflammation Biology and Metabolism, Musculoskeletal Biology, Safe and Sustainable Food, Comparative Physiology and Medicine

Abir is a Lecturer and member of the Comparative Physiology & Medicine research programme. Abir's research examines TGF-β factors and how they control physiology.

Abir began his academic career with a BSc (Hons) in Chemistry at Presidency College, University of Calcutta, India. Abir continued at University of Calcutta to study for an MSc in Biophysics, Molecular Biology & Genetics. While pursuing his MSc Abir worked during the summer with Astra in Bangalore, India and upon completion of his MSc he joined Astra as a research associate.

After working for Astra, Abir moved to Northwestern University, in Evanston Illinois, USA to commence his PhD. He joined the laboratory of Professor Kelly Mayo and completed his PhD in 1999. Following this, Abir moved on to the Fred Hutchinson Research Centre, in Seattle, Washington, USA for post doctoral research with Jonathan Cooper and subsequently moved to Massachusetts General Hospital, in Boston, USA to work with Alan Schneyer on reproductive endocrinology. At Massachusetts General Hospital Abir developed the follistatin-like 3 (FSTL3) gene deletion mutant mouse strain (FSTL3 KO) which led him to commence his research on the roles of TGFβ ligand system in metabolism and reproduction. Abir is continuing his research in these fields after moving to his current position at the RVC as a lecturer.

Abir’s aim is to find out more about the key molecular processes which regulate reproduction and metabolism from in utero, through adult life to propagation of the species. TGFβ molecules play an intricate and crucial role in all these aspects of life. In particular Abir would like to know how TGFβ molecules function and further examine their roles in development, adult metabolism, homeostasis and reproduction. Abir uses many molecular biological techniques in relation to DNA, RNA & proteins as well as mouse genetics in his work.

Most recently Abir has been examining a testicular phenotype in the mutant mouse strain FSTL3 KO and trying to understand the roles played by the TGFβ factors in testicular physiology. This work involves collaborations with Eduardo Roldan at the RVC, Peter O’Shaughnessy, at Glasgow and Dr. Steven Gygi’s laboratory at Harvard Medical School.

Abir is collaborating with Donald Palmer at the RVC to study whether FSTL3 and TGFβ signalling system affects the immune system, particularly at architecture and cellular populations of the thymus and the spleen.

MUKHERJEE, A., SIDIS, Y., MAHAN, A., RAHER, M. J., XIA, Y., ROSEN, E. D., BLOCH, K. D., THOMAS, M. K. & SCHNEYER, A. L. (2007) FSTL3 deletion reveals roles for TGF-beta family ligands in glucose and fat homeostasis in adults. Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A 104, 1348-1353. PubMed ID 17229845

SIDIS, Y., MUKHERJEE, A., KEUTMANN, H., DELBAERE, A., SADATSUKI, M. & SCHNEYER, A. (2006) Biological activity of follistatin isoforms and follistatin-like-3 is dependent on differential cell surface binding and specificity for activin, myostatin, and bone morphogenetic proteins. Endocrinology 147, 3586-3597. PubMed ID 16627583

BURKART, A. D., MUKHERJEE, A. & MAYO, K. E. (2006) Mechanism of repression of the inhibin alpha-subunit gene by inducible 3',5'-cyclic adenosine monophosphate early repressor. Mol Endocrinol 20, 584-597. PubMed ID 16269517

XIA, Y., SIDIS, Y., MUKHERJEE, A., SAMAD, T. A., BRENNER, G., WOOLF, C. J., LIN, H. Y. & SCHNEYER, A. (2005) Localization and action of Dragon (repulsive guidance molecule b), a novel bone morphogenetic protein coreceptor, throughout the reproductive axis. Endocrinology 146, 3614-3621. PubMed ID 15890774

SAITO, S., SIDIS, Y., MUKHERJEE, A., XIA, Y. & SCHNEYER, A. (2005) Differential biosynthesis and intracellular transport of follistatin isoforms and follistatin-like-3. Endocrinology 146, 5052-5062. PubMed ID 16150905

BURKART, A. D., MUKHERJEE, A., STERNECK, E., JOHNSON, P. F. & MAYO, K. E. (2005) Repression of the inhibin alpha-subunit gene by the transcription factor CCAAT/enhancer-binding protein-beta. Endocrinology 146, 1909-1921. PubMed ID 15650079

MUKHERJEE, A., ARNAUD, L. & COOPER, J. A. (2003) Lipid-dependent recruitment of neuronal Src to lipid rafts in the brain. J Biol Chem 278, 40806-40814. PubMed ID 12912979

MAIZELS, E. T., MUKHERJEE, A., SITHANANDAM, G., PETERS, C. A., COTTOM, J., MAYO, K. E. & HUNZICKER-DUNN, M. (2001) Developmental regulation of mitogen-activated protein kinase-activated kinases-2 and -3 (MAPKAPK-2/-3) in vivo during corpus luteum formation in the rat. Mol Endocrinol 15, 716-733. PubMed ID 11328854

SCHOMBERG, D. W., COUSE, J. F., MUKHERJEE, A., LUBAHN, D. B., SAR, M., MAYO, K. E. & KORACH, K. S. (1999) Targeted disruption of the estrogen receptor-alpha gene in female mice: characterization of ovarian responses and phenotype in the adult. Endocrinology 140, 2733-2744. PubMed ID 10342864

MUKHERJEE, A., URBAN, J., SASSONE-CORSI, P. & MAYO, K. E. (1998) Gonadotropins regulate inducible cyclic adenosine 3',5'-monophosphate early repressor in the rat ovary: implications for inhibin alpha subunit gene expression. Mol Endocrinol 12, 785-800. PubMed ID 9626654

MUKHERJEE, A., PARK-SARGE, O. K. & MAYO, K. E. (1996) Gonadotropins induce rapid phosphorylation of the 3',5'-cyclic adenosine monophosphate response element binding protein in ovarian granulosa cells. Endocrinology 137, 3234-3245. PubMed ID 8754745

Abir plays an active teaching role within the college lecturing all three years of the BSc Bioveterinary Science course and acting as module leader for the Enemy Within module for year 2 students. He is a co-module organizer, with Rob Fowkes, for the the Endocrine and Metabolic Syndromes module for year 3 students. Abir is an academic tutor for BSc students and also supervises BSc Bioveterinary Science Year 1 Library project and Year 2 & 3 research projects. Abir plays a smaller lecturing role on the BVetMed course, but also acts as a BVetMed tutor and communication skills facilitator.

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