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A result oriented biological researcher with three years of experience in new drug discovery program in the pharmaceutical industry and five years of postdoctoral research experience; worked in varied fields like biochemistry, pharmacology and cell biology. Persistent, adaptive and a hardworking investigator having experience working in the diverse area of research like diabetes, inflammation, allergy, cardiovascular biology and induced pluripotent stem cells. Determined and valued member of the project team with collaborative attitude, a talent for quickly learning new technologies and creative problem-solving abilities. Belief in contributing to company’s growth by achieving goals in the time stipulated manner.

Work experience

Jul 2014Present

Postdoctoral Fellow

Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine, Department of Radiation Oncology and Molecular Radiation Sciences

Project: Induced pluripotent stem (iPS) cell-based approaches for modeling and treating Ataxia-Telangiectasia

The objective of this study is to understand the pathophysiology of the disease called Ataxia-telangiectasia (A-T) caused by the mutation in DNA damage response protein ATM. For this, we established A-T patient-derived induced pluripotent stem cells (iPSCs) as an experimental model system which recapitulates defects in DNA damage response as known in the patient. 

Sep 2011Jun 2014

Postdoctoral Fellow

Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine, Division of Cardiology

Projet: To study cardiac substrate metabolism and its impact on redox environment of diabetic heart from Zucker diabetic fatty rat (ZDF). 

Type 2 diabetes mellitus (T2DM) leads to cardiomyopathy. It is poorly understood whether hyperglycemia or hyperlipidemia is more deleterious in cardiomyopathy condition and how they affect redox environment of diabetic heart. The goal of our study was to dissect the individual effect of high glucose and high lipid on a diabetic heart with respect to redox metabolism. We choose cardiac muscle, a unique experimental model system to address our question and used palmitate as fatty acid substrate. We found that under normal glucose condition, high palmitate had a deleterious effect (as observed by others in last many decades of research while under high glucose condition it improves cardiac muscle contraction. The improvement in cardiac function by palmitate was due to restoration of redox balance by up-modulation of reduced glutathione (GSH)/thioredoxin (Trx) in mitochondria.

Jul 2001Jun 2004

Research Associate 

Sun Pharma Advanced Research Company Ltd.
  • Allergy

Screened anti-histamine new chemical entities (NCEs) through the use of animal models including induced bronchospasm,    histamine-induced paw edema, and compound 48/80 (mast cell degranulator).

  • Inflammation and Ulcerogenicity

Performed anti-inflammatory NCEs screening via carrageenan-induced paw edema, cotton pellet granuloma, and lipopolysaccharide induced TNF-alpha levels in mice. Explored anti-ulcerogenic activity via indomethacin-induced ulcerogenic activity.

  • Cancer

Screened anti-cancer drug formulations by tumor induction in Balb/c mice with cell line; performed tumor regression studies.

  • Cardiovascular measurements & safety pharmacology

Conducted safety pharmacology studies including measurement of blood pressure by telemetry method, the spontaneous motor activity of mice, and barbiturate-induced sleeping time.

  • Drug Metabolism by Cytochrome P450 enzyme

Induced Cytochrome P450 enzymes in rats and prepared microsome.

  • Directed in vitro and in vivo assay optimization and reproducibility with a focus on cost efficiency and time constraints. Preplanned and executed experiments with intense precision, documentation, and methodology improvement with each iteration. Established reliable, easily reproducible assays for the screening of new drug entities (NCE’s) anti-histaminic, anti-inflammatory drugs and anti-cancerous drug formulations.
  • Proactively gathered information and developed understanding of different research areas to acclimate quickly and contribute to new experiments. Shared knowledge and experience with the junior
  • Utilized strong multi-tasking ability to prioritize and balance numerous simultaneous experiments. Ensured consistently available reagents and comprehensive, organized, and easily accessible documentation in conjunction with skillful time and resource management to attain a high degree of workplace efficiency.
  • Determined efficacy, potency, and cardiovascular safety through pharmacological studies and drug-drug interaction studies of selected NCEs; compiled data, performed analysis and generated reports.
  • Followed good laboratory practice (GLP) guidelines to carry out experiments in a timely fashion and fill new drug entities for Phase I clinical trials. Appraised senior management regarding progress.
  • Quickly promoted from trainee research assistant to research officer in just three years as a result of excellent performance.


Jul 2004Jan 2011


The Maharaja Sayajirao university of Baroda

“Efficacy of Enicostemma littorale Blume extracts in insulin resistance and diabetic complications using rat models.”

Investigated efficacy of plant Enicostemma littorale Blume (EL) extracts in diabetic complications using rat models of diabetic neuropathy, nephropathy, cardiovascular complications, male reproductive dysfunction, diet-induced insulin resistance and apoptosis of islets of Langerhans. 

May 2005May 2008

Master of Business Administration (MBA) in Health Care Services

Sikkim Manipal University, India.

Health care services

Jun 1999May 2001

Masters of Biochemisty (M.Sc)

The Maharaja Sayajirao university of Baroda

Biochemistry, Physiology, Cell Biology, Molecular Biology, Neurochemistry. Immunology, 

Jun 1996May 1999

Bachelors of Science (B.Sc)

The Maharaja Sayajirao university of Baroda

Botany, Zoology, Chemistry


  • First prize for poster presentation. Niraj Bhatt, Abhay Srivastava, Tushar Patel, Nidheesh Dadheech, Anubha Singh and Sarita Gupta. “Evaluation of protective effect of Enicostemma littorale extract against H2O2-induced apoptosis in islets of Langerhans at International Conference on Diabetes and its Complications at Changa, Dist. Anand, Gujarat, India, January 2013.
  • Qualified National Eligibility Test CSIR-UGC-NET -Dec 2001, Council Of Scientific & Industrial Research, Life Science Biochemistry – A national level, most prestigious examination to become a Lecturer in India
  • GATE Examination (Life Sciences): Qualified a national level examination conducted by IITs (Indian Institute of Technology) which provides eligibility for a Master’s degree in Technology or Ph.D. from IITs.


  1. Bhatt NM, Ghosh R, Roy S, Gao Y, Armanios M, Cheng L and Sonia Franco. Robust reprogramming of  Ataxia-telangiectasia blood cells to induced pluripotent stem cells. (submitted)
  2. Srivastava A, Bhatt NM, Patel TP, Dadheech N, Singh A, Gupta S. Anti-apoptotic and cytoprotective effect of Enicostemma littorale against oxidative stress in Islets of Langerhans. Pharmaceutical Biology. 2016; Mar 14:1-12.
  3. Bhatt NM, Aon M, Tocchetti CG, Shen X, Genaro Ramirez-Correa, O’Rourke B, Gao WD and Cortassa S. Restoring redox balance enhances contractility in heart trabeculae from type 2 diabetic rats exposed to high glucose. American Journal of Physiol Heart Circulatory Physiology 2015; 308: H291–H302
  4. Aon M, Bhatt NM, Cortassa S. Mitochondrial mechanisms for managing lipid affluence in the context of Redox-Optimized ROS balance and energetics. Frontiers in Physiology 2014;31:5-282.
  5. Shen X, Bhatt N, Xu J, Meng T, Aon M, O'Rourke B, Berkowitz D, Cortassa S, Gao WD. Effect of isoflurane on myocardial energetic and oxidative stress in cardiac muscle from Zucker diabetic fatty rat. The Journal of pharmacology and experimental therapeutics. 2014; 349:21–28
  6. Bhatt NM, Chavda M, Desai D, Zalawadia R, Patel VB, Burade V, Sharma AK, Singal PK, Gupta S. Cardioprotective and antihypertensive effects of enicostemma littorale blume extract in fructose-fed rats. Canadian journal of physiology and pharmacology. 2012;90:1065-1073
  7. Pillai P, Pandya C, Bhatt N, Gupta SS. Biochemical and reproductive effects of gestational/lactational exposure to lead and cadmium with respect to testicular steroidogenesis, antioxidant system, endogenous sex steroid and cauda-epididymal functions. Andrologia. 2012;44:92-101
  8. Pandya C, Pillai P, Nampoothiri LP, Bhatt N, Gupta S, Gupta S. Effect of lead and cadmium co-exposure on testicular steroid metabolism and antioxidant system of adult male rats. Andrologia. 2012;44 Suppl 1:813-822
  9. Bhatt NM, Chauhan K, Gupta S, Pillai P, Pandya C, Thaikoottathil J and Sarita S. Gupta. Protective effect of enicostemma littorale blume methanolic extract on gentamicin-induced nephrotoxicity in rats. American Journal of Infectious Diseases. 2011;7:83-90
  10. Bhatt NM, Barua S and Gupta S. Protective effect of Enicostemma littorale blume on rat model of diabetic neuropathy. American Journal of Infectious Diseases. 2009;5 99-105 


Stem Cells

Reprogramming of fibroblast to iPSCs, Culture and maintenance of iPSCs, Characterization of iPSCs for pluripotency, Neuronal stem cell generation from iPSCs

DNA damage and repair

DNA damage analysis by gamma H2X, 53BP1 and P-ATM foci formation by immunofluorescence, Telomere length analysis by FISH on metaphases


Cardiac muscle force & respiration measurement, Measurement of  sarcomere shortening and calcium transients (of Cardiomyocytes) using an inverted fluorescence microscope (Nikon TE2000) and IonOptix (Myocam) software. Cardiomyocyte isolation from rat and mouse heart. 

Mitochondrial Physiology

Isolation of mitochondria, mitochondrial membrane potential measurement by TMRM dye,  ROS measurement from mitochondria 

Molecular Biological Techniques

 Isolation of DNA & RNA (even from a single cell), PCR, cDNA preparation, Gel Electrophoresis,  TOPO-TA Cloning.

Microscopy techniques

 2-Photon laser scanning microscopy, EVOS FL Auto Cell Imaging System, Zeiss Axioplan Imager Z.1 microscope

Animal Handling & Surgical Skills

Skilled in handling mice, rats, guinea pigs

Partial pancreatectomy, Nephrectomy, Cannulation with polyethylene tubing: carotid artery, femoral and jugular vein, Implantation of small gadgets like radio transmitter for blood pressure measurement 

Cell culture 

Culture and maintenance of different cell lines, Isolation and purification of rat pancreatic islets 

Pharmacological Techniques

Blood pressure measurement from rat using telemetry system, spontaneous motor activity of mice, rat paw edema measurement by plethysmometer, measuring motor coordination by rotarod test

Biochemical Assays

ELISA, Enzyme assays, Estimation of biomolecules


Dr.Sonia Franco

Associate Professor
Johns Hopkins University, School of Medicine
Department of Radiation Oncology and Molecular Radiation Sciences
1550 Orleans St. CRB II Room 405
Baltimore, MD 21231
[email protected]

Linzhao Cheng, Ph.D.

Professor of Medicine
Edythe Harris Lucas and Clara Lucas Lynn Chair in Hematology
Associate Director for Basic Research, Johns Hopkins Hematology
Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine
33 North Broadway, Room 747
Baltimore, MD 21205
[email protected]

Miguel A. Aon, PhD
         National Institute on Aging/NIH, 
         BRC BG Rm 09B119, 
         251 Bayview Blvd., Baltimore, MD 21224
         E-mail: [email protected]
         Phone: 410-558-8685