Santosh Verma, Ph.D.

Office: +91 522 2495641


Dr. Santosh Verma received his PhD from University of Delhi, South Campus, New Delhi, India (Prof. Debi P. Sarkar’s group) in 2008. After completing his PhD, he finished his postdoctoral training at NICHD, National Institutes of Health (NIH), USA (Dr. Leonid V. Chernomordik’s group). At NIH, his research was directed towards understanding the role of macrophage fusion mechanism involved in osteoclast formation (cells that desorb bone in their continuous remodeling). Later in 2018 he joined as an Assistant Instructor in the Department of Molecular Biology, UT Southwestern Medical Center (UTSW), Dallas, USA (Prof. Elizabeth H. Chen’s group). At UTSW he was involved in diverse research projects to explore the cellular morphology and protein localization in myoblast and in macrophage fusion process. In March 2019 Dr. Verma returned India to start his independent scientific research career as an Assistant Professor, Department of Molecular Medicine & Biotechnology, Sanjay Gandhi Postgraduate Institute of Medical Sciences (SGPGIMS), Lucknow, India. During his scientific career, Dr. Verma has been trained on diverse aspect of membrane fusion (virus entry mechanism, cell-to-cell fusion in development & drug delivery) and his research is acknowledged by awarding him NIH-Fellow Award for Research Excellence (FARE) 2015, USA and giving him opportunity to present his work (as platform & oral presentations) in many peer selected international scientific meetings (American Society for Bone and Mineral Research (ASBMR) 2016 Annual Meeting USA, 60th Annual Biophysical Society Meeting  USA and 12th Annual NICHD Meeting USA (among top six-selected NICHD fellow talk). His current main area of research is to focus membrane remodeling during cell-fusion in development with potential translational interventions in health and disease.


Research Interest: Membrane remodeling during cell-fusion in development, tissue repair & membrane regeneration


Research Overview:

One of the fascinating phenomena during development is membrane remodeling shaping cells to form organ. Cell-to-cell fusion is one such ubiquitous physiological phenomenon involved during the process of development and disease biology. However, little is known about the factors that regulate the formation of giant multinucleate cells during the formation of osteoclast, foreign body giant cells (FBGCs) formation after biomaterial implantation, syncytiotrophoblast formation during placental development, myotubes formation in muscles and possibly during cancer having role in cancer metastasis. Membrane fusion involves changes in membrane topology facilitated by cell-fusion proteins (termed as “fusogens”) and membrane lipids. Our long-term vision is to understand how membrane remodeling play important role during diverse, less explored cell-fusion process in development and in disease conditions. Working in the direction of translational research, we anticipate our basic science research will form the basis for potential drug discovery platform with novel approaches of therapy. We preempt to establish unique in-vitro and ex-vivo approaches to study diverse cell fusion stage in development. From therapeutic perspective, we will utilize this approach as a tool for drug screening platform and from clinical research perspective, in identification of early biomarker candidates for cell-fusion regulated disease (preeclampsia and osteoporosis) prognosis.


Our immediate research focus is to explore diverse cell-fusion process and its regulation in placenta formation, macrophage fusion, myoblast fusion and cancer-cell fusion during metastasis. To have deep insight of membrane fusion process, we will utilize multifaceted modern biology tools to understand such process in cell biology.


Selected Publication:


  1. Uygur B., Leikina E., Melikov K., Villasmi R., Verma S.K., Vary CPH, Chernomordik LV (2019) Interactions with muscle cells boost fusion, stemness and drug resistance of prostate cancer cells Mol. Cancer Res., 17(3): 806-820

  2. Verma S.K., Leikina E., Melikov K., Gebert C., Kram V., Young M.F., Uygur B., and Chernomordik L. V. (2018) Cell-surface phosphatidylserine regulates osteoclast precursor fusion J. Biol. Chem., 293 (1): 254-270

  3. Verma S.K. Chernomordik L. V. and Melikov K.  (2018) An improved metrics for osteoclast multinucleation Scientific Reports, 8: 1768

  4. Verma S.K., Leikina E., Melikov K. and Chernomordik L. V. (2014) Late stages of synchronized macrophage fusion in osteoclast formation depends on dynamin. Biochem. J., 464: 293-300

  5. Leikina E., Melikov K., Sanyal S., Verma, S. K., Eun B., Gebert C., Pfeifer K., Lizunov V.A., Kozolov M.M., And Chernomordik L. V. (2013) Extracellular annexins and dynamin are important for sequential steps in myoblast fusion J. Cell Biol., 200: 109-123 (Selected for cover page illustration)


Dr. Santosh Kumar Verma

Assistant Professor,

Department of Molecular Medicine and Biotechnology

4th Floor, PMSSY Building,

Sanjay Gandhi Postgraduate Institute of Medical Sciences (SGPGIMS)

Lucknow-226024, U.P., India

Office number: 0522-2495641

+91 522 2495642

©2018 Department of Molecular Medicine & Biotechnology.