Department of Pharmaceutical Sciences
Research in my lab is focused on developing immunotherapeutics and vaccines by harnessing our body's natural host defense mechanisms. Our research efforts have been focused on developing TLR4-interacting surfactant protein-A-derived peptides and dendritic cell-based vaccine approaches. We are interested in investigating the mechanism and efficacy of these approaches in vitro and in animal models of infection, inflammation and cancer.
Education & Experience
- Categorical certificate in Clinical Microbiology; UTHSCSA, TX. 2005-2006.
- Ph.D. Microbiology, Sanjay Ganhi P.G. Institute of Medical Sciences, Lucknow, India, 1991-1995. Ph.D. Thesis: "Biological characterization of Helicobacter pylori isolates from patients with peptic ulcer diseases."
- M.Sc. Biosciences, Indian Institute of Technology, Roorkee, India. 1988-1990. M.Sc. Dissertation: "Transposon Tn5 mutagenesis of Rhizobium meliloti and isolation of auxotrophic mutants."
- B.Sc. Zoology, Botany, Chemistry, MKP College/HNB University, Dehradun, India. 1986-1988.
Certificate and License
- Certified in Clinical Microbiology, American Society of Clinical Pathologists.
- Asst Professor of Research, Dept. of Pharmaceutical Sciences, Univ. of Oklahoma College of Pharmacy, OKC, OK 2006-2008.
- Asst. Professor of Research, Pathology, University of TX Health Sci. Ctr. (UTHSCSA), TX. 2005-2006.
- Instructor-Research, Pathology, Microbiology & Immunology, UTHSCSA, TX. 2002-2004.
- Research Associate, Molecular Medicine, Feinstein Institute of Medical Research, Manhasset, NY. 2000-2002.
- Post-doctoral Fellow, Physiology, UTHSCSA, TX. 1996-2000.
Honors & Service
Travel Award, American Assn. of Immunologists, 2008, 2010.
Teaching Excellent Course, UTHSCSA, San Antonio, TX. 2002
Postdoctoral Travel Award, Society of Leukocyte Biology for presentation in SLB meeting at Hawaii, USA. 2001
Research fellowship during Ph.D. , Sanjay Gandhi PA Institute of Med. Sciences, Lucknow, India, 1991-1995.
National Scholarship, prizes, certificates for outstanding academic achievements. India, 1985-1990.
Gold Medal for academic achievements in the University. 1986-1988.
Selected Publications & Presentations
Ramani V, Madhusoodhanan R, Kosanke S, Awasthi S. A TLR4-interacting SPA4 peptide inhibits lipopolysaccharide-induced lung inflammation. Innate Immun 2013; in press.
Garcia-Contreras L, Awasthi S, Hanif SNF, Hickey AJ. Inhaled vaccines for the prevention of tuberculosis. J Mycobac Dis 2012; S-1 (dx.doi.org/10.4172/2161-1068.S1-002).
Daw K, Baghdayan A, Awasthi S, Shankar N. Biofilm and planktonic Enterococcus faecalis elicit different responses from host phagocytes in vitro. FEMS Immunol Med Microbiol 2012; 65: 270-282. PMID 22333034; PMCID PMC3366019.
Moriasi C, Subramaniam D, Awasthi S, Ramalingam S, Anant S. Prevention of colitis-associated cancer: Natural compounds that target the IL-6 soluble receptor. Anticancer Agents in Med Checm 2012; 12(10): 1221-1238.
Awasthi S, Singh B, Welliver RC, Dietert RR. Lung dendritic cell developmental programming, environmental stimuli, and asthma in early periods of life. J Allergy 2012; 2012:176468. doi: 10.1155/2012/176468.
Current Grants Awarded
07/01/2011-06/30/2013 American Heart Association Grant-in-Aid. "Modulation of host defense by SP-A-TLR4 interaction."
01/08/2013-05/31/2013 NIH-COBRE. "Structure-function relation of a TLR4-interacting surfactant protein-A-derived peptide." Pilot project.
8/1/2007-7/31/2010 Oklahoma Center for the Advancement of Science and Technology (OCAST) - Evaluation of a vaccine for coccidioides in mouse model
07/01/2008-06/30/2010 OU College of Pharmacy Seed Grant - Interaction between baboon lung surfactant proetin-A and Toll-like Receptor 4.
- 7/1/2007 - 12/31/2008 Presbyterian Health Foundation (PHF) - Immune functions of dendritic cells, toll-like receptor (TLR) and collectins in preterm baboon lung
11/1/2006 - 6/30/2007 American Lung Association (ALA) - Role of dendritic cells and pathogen-pattern recognition receptors in premature baboon lung