Outsmarting the Hepatitis C Virus

How researchers at IISc are working on turning research on translation to translational research When Saumitra Das was a postdoc at the University of California, Los Angeles, he discovered how to inhibit polio virus translation. That is, how to stop the virus from hijacking its host cell’s machinery to manufacture its own proteins. Das had […]

How IISc Launched Aerospace Research in India

And how its alumni shaped it in the years that followed IISc set up its Department of Aeronautical Engineering in 1942 – bang in the middle of World War II. It was the year that the Nazis were to begin acting on their horrific plan for a “Final Solution”, that the Japanese military strengthened its […]

The Testing Facility for the Fast and Furious

What goes on at IISc’s high-speed wind tunnel complex?  In 2015, an Italian tiltrotor military aircraft AW609 was on a test flight at high speeds and it crashed a few minutes after taking off, claiming the lives of both its pilots. Investigating the crash, the air-accident investigation agency ANSV pointed out that insufficient wind tunnel […]

Shock Tunnels Test More than Just Spacecraft Models

One of the largest shock tunnels in a university setup, India’s first hypersonic shock tunnel (HST) was built in 1973 at IISc by NM Reddy, who had studied under Irvine Israel Glass and Satish Dhawan. After holding several positions abroad, Reddy returned to India in 1970 and introduced shock tubes and shock tunnels in India […]

Dealing with Dementia: Diagnosis, Causes and Coping with Cognitive Decline

Doctors and scientists are on a mission to understand this complex neurodegenerative disorder One morning, Ragini, a resident of Chennai, caught a glimpse of her 67-year-old mother, Lakshmi, using a toothbrush on her own reflection in the mirror. Ragini was taken aback by what she saw – her mother was in good mental health and […]

Graphene and Its Superlative Properties

Amogh Kinikar, who did his Master’s in Physics at IISc, on why graphene is a fascinating material​ In 2012, I found myself in the Department of Physics at IISc, holding a five-and-a-half feet tall, extremely top-heavy object called a dip stick. It was a long narrow vacuum chamber that could be inserted into vessels containing […]

‘The Aerospace Department, Like the Whole of IISc, Was a Quieter Place Then’: Rama Govindarajan

Rama Govindarajan is a renowned scientist whose work lies in the area of fluid dynamics. The recipient of several awards, in 2007 she received the Shanti Swarup Bhatnagar Prize for her “original contributions to the understanding of instabilities in shear and non-parallel flows, flow entrainment, turbulent transition and small-scale hydraulic jumps.” She remains the only […]

Institute Colloquium: Jayant Modak on How Modelling Can Benefit Industrial Biotechnology

It can help make the best use of available resources, says IISc’s Deputy Director Microorganisms, often described as protein-producing factories, are widely used by industrial biotechnologists to produce human proteins of therapeutic interest. One such example is human insulin, produced by the bacterium Escherichia coli (better known as E. coli) and more recently, by the […]

Annapoorni Rangarajan is on a Quest to Understand How Breast Cancer Spreads

Learning what activates cancer stem cells, which can lead to metastasis, may hold the key to fighting other cancers too Annapoorni Rangarajan, Associate Professor at the Centre for Molecular Reproduction and Developmental Genetics, was bitten by what she calls the “cancer keeda” over two decades ago as a Master’s student at Nagpur University. “What really interested me was […]

AG Samuelson studies the anti-cancer properties of copper complexes (Photo: Karthik Ramaswamy)

Ashoka G Samuelson Tells us How Chemistry Permits Endless Creativity

Samuelson gave an Institute Colloquium recently in which he discussed his work on copper complexes, and why they matter Ashoka G Samuelson is a professor at the Department of Inorganic and Physical Chemistry, IISc. He joined the Institute after completing his PhD from Cornell University, USA, in 1983. His research is centred on understanding how […]