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Dr. Rajeeb K Swain


Degree University/Institution
MSc. in BiotechnologySavitribai Phule Pune University, India
P.hD. Developmental BiologyUniversity of Tübingen, Germany.

Work Experience

Position University/Organisation Period
Scientist-EInstitute of Life Sciences, BhubaneswarJanuary 2019 – Present
Scientist-DInstitute of Life Sciences, BhubaneswarSeptember 2015 – December 2018
Ramalingaswami FellowInstitute of Life Sciences, BhubaneswarDecember 2011 – December 2016

Awards & Recognition



The focus of our laboratory has been to study how organs develop during embryogenesis. The organogenesis involves most spectacular coordination of biological processes such as cell division, differentiation and migration regulated by well-orchestrated processes at molecular level such as transcription factor activity, cell to cell communication, biochemical process and changes in cell architecture among others. We study the developmental processes with the hope that, what we learn from the embryo will shed light on how normal physiological processes are coordinated in the adults. This in turn could help us better understand the disease biology where the normal cellular and molecular process become mis-regulated.

In particular, we are investigating the molecular mechanisms underlying kidney development and function using zebrafish as a model. We are also interested to create zebrafish models of human kidney diseases and use these to discover new drugs or drug targets. Other areas of interest are endothelial cell biology, angiogenesis and understanding regulation of gene expression during embryogenesis. We use genome editing techniques (CRISPR and TALEN), zebrafish transgenesis and a range of functional assays and imaging techniques in our research.



PubMed                               Google Scholar

  1. Fatma S, Kumar R, Dixit A and Swain RK (2021). Expression of two uncharacterized protein coding genes in zebrafish lateral line system. Int J Dev Biol. (In Press).
  2. Mohapatra D, Das B, Suresh V, Parida D, Minz AP, Nayak U, Mohapatra AP, Swain RK, Senapati S (2021). Fluvastatin sensitizes pancreatic cancer cells toward radiation therapy and suppresses radiation- and/or TGF-β-induced tumor-associated fibrosis. Lab Invest.  doi: 10.1038/s41374-021-00690-7. 
  3. Fatma S, Nayak U, Swain RK (2021). Methods to generate and evaluate zebrafish models of human kidney diseases. Int J Dev Biol.; 65(7-8-9): 475-485. 
  4. Dhanagovind PT, Kujur PK, Swain RK, Banerjee S. IL-6 Signaling Protects Zebrafish Larvae during Staphylococcus epidermidis Infection in a Bath Immersion Model. J Immunol.; 207(8): 2129-2142.
  5. Ramesh ST, Navyasree KV, Sah S, Ashok AB, Qathoon N, Mohanty S, Swain RK, Umasankar PK (2021). BMP2K phosphorylates AP-2 and regulates clathrin-mediated endocytosis.Traffic; 22(11): 377-396. 
  6. Barman HK, Mohapatra SD, Chakrapani V, Mondal S, Murmu B, Soren MM, Patra K, Swain RK (2021). Genomic organization and hypoxia inducible factor responsive regulation of teleost hsp90β gene during hypoxia stress. Mol Biol Rep.; 48(9): 6491-6501.
  7. Suresh V, Mohanty V, Avula K, Ghosh A, Singh B, Reddy RK, Parida D, Suryawanshi AR, Raghav SK, Chattopadhyay S, Prasad P, Swain RK, Dash R, Parida A, Syed GH, Senapati S (2021). Quantitative proteomics of hamster lung tissues infected with SARS-CoV-2 reveal host factors having implication in the disease pathogenesis and severity. FASEB J.; 35(7) : e21713.
  8. Raghav S, Ghosh A, Turuk J, Kumar S, Jha A, Madhulika S, Priyadarshini M, Biswas VK, Shyamli PS, Singh B, Singh N, Singh D, Datey A, Avula K, Smita S, Sabat J, Bhattacharya D, Kshatri JS, Vasudevan D, Suryawanshi A, Dash R, Senapati S, Beuria TK, Swain R, Chattopadhyay S, Syed GH, Dixit A, Prasad P; Odisha COVID-19 Study Group; ILS COVID-19 Team, Pati S, Parida A (2021). Analysis of Indian SARS-CoV-2 Genomes Reveals Prevalence of D614G Mutation in Spike Protein Predicting an Increase in Interaction With TMPRSS2 and Virus Infectivity. Front Microbiol.; 11: 594928.  
  9. Kolapalli SP, Sahu R, Chauhan NR, Jena KK, Mehto S, Das SK, Jain A, Rout M, Dash R, Swain RK, Lee DY, Rusten TE, Chauhan S, Chauhan S (2021). RNA-Binding RING E3-Ligase DZIP3/hRUL138 Stabilizes Cyclin D1 to Drive Cell-Cycle and Cancer Progression. Cancer Res.; 81(2): 315-331.
  10. Borah S, Vasudevan D and Swain RK (2019). C-type lectin family XIV members and angiogenesis. Oncol Lett.; 18(4): 3954-3962.
  11. Barrodia P, Patra C, Swain RK (2018). EF-hand domain containing 2 (Efhc2) is crucial for distal segmentation of pronephros in zebrafish. Cell & Bioscience; 8: 53.
  12. Mohanty M, Mohanty RC, Mohanty R and Swain R (2017). Human Papilloma Virus 16 and 18 Association in Cervical Intraepithelial Lesions and Cervical Cancers by In Situ Hybridization. Int. J. Med. Res. & Health Sci.; 6(3): 41-47.
  13. Borah S, Barrodia P, Swain RK (2016). Nucleolar protein 4-like has a complex expression pattern in zebrafish embryos. Int J Dev Biol.; 60(1-3): 53-56.
  14. Gorny AK, Kaufmann LT, Swain RK, Steinbeisser H (2013). A secreted splice variant of the Xenopus frizzled-4 receptor is a biphasic modulator of Wnt signalling. Cell Commun Signal.; 11:89.
  15. Hetheridge C, Scott AN, Swain RK, Copeland JW, Higgs HN, Bicknell R, Mellor H (2012). The formin FMNL3 is a cytoskeletal regulator of angiogenesis. J Cell Sci.; 125(Pt 6): 1420-1428.
  16. Hou JM, Krebs MG, Lancashire L, Sloane R, Backen A, Swain RK, Priest LJ, Greystoke A, Zhou C, Morris K, Ward T, Blackhall FH, Dive C. (2012). Clinical significance and molecular characteristics of circulating tumor cells and circulating tumor microemboli in patients with small-cell lung cancer. J Clin Oncol.; 30(5): 525-532.
  17. Mura M, Swain RK*, Zhuang X, Vorschmitt H, Reynolds G, Durant S, Beesley JF, Herbert JM, Sheldon H, Andre M, Sanderson S, Glen K, Luu NT, McGettrick HM, Antczak P, Falciani F, Nash GB, Nagy ZS, Bicknell R (2012). Identification and angiogenic role of the novel tumor endothelial marker CLEC14A. Oncogene; 31(3): 293-305. *Joint first author
  18. Verissimo AR, Herbert JM, Heath VL, Legg JA, Sheldon H, Andre M, Swain RK, Bicknell R (2009). Functionally defining the endothelial transcriptome, from Robo4 to ECSCR. Biochem Soc Trans.; 37(Pt 6): 1214-1217.
  19. Steinbeisser H, Swain RK (2008). Wnt-frizzled interactions in Xenopus. Methods Mol Biol.; 469:451-463.
  20. Vincan E, Swain RK, Brabletz T, Steinbeisser H (2007). Frizzled7 dictates embryonic morphogenesis: implications for colorectal cancer progression. Front Biosci.; 12: 4558-4567.
  21. Swain RK, Katoh M, Medina A, Steinbeisser H (2005). Xenopus frizzled-4S, a splicing variant of Xfz4 is a context-dependent activator and inhibitor of Wnt/beta-catenin signaling. Cell Commun Signal.; 3:12.
  22. Medina A, Swain RK*, Kuerner KM, Steinbeisser H (2004). Xenopus paraxial protocadherin has signaling functions and is involved in tissue separation. EMBO J.; 23(16): 3249-3258. *Joint first author
  23. Winklbauer R, Medina A, Swain RK, Steinbeisser H (2001). Frizzled-7 signalling controls tissue separation during Xenopus gastrulation. Nature; 413(6858): 856-860.
  24. Swain RK, Medina A, Steinbeisser H (2001). Functional analysis of the Xenopus frizzled 7 protein domains using chimeric receptors. Int J Dev Biol.; 45(1): 259-264.
  25. Ralhan R, Swain RK, Agarwal S, Kaur J, Nath N, Sarkar G, Mathur M, Shukla NK (1999). P-glycoprotein is positively correlated with p53 in human oral pre-malignant and malignant lesions and is associated with poor prognosis. Int J Cancer.; 84(1): 80-85.




Praveen’s PhD defence 2018                                       Supriya’s PhD defence 2019 



Postdoctoral Fellow

Dr. Divyanshi Karothia, PhD, Defense Research Development and Establishment (DRDE), Gwalior

Email: dkrothiy[at]gmail[dot]com

Ph.D Students

Ms. Sana Fatma, M.Sc (Biotechnology), Madurai Kamaraj University, Madurai


Email: fatmasana123[at]gmail[dot]com

Ms. Usharani Nayak, MSc. (Zoology), Fakir Mohan University, Balasore


Email: usharaninayakk14[at]gmail[dot]com

Ms. Manaswini Rout, MSc. (Botany), Ravenshaw University, Cuttack


Email: manrout876[at]gmail[dot]com

Mr. Sanjeev Anand, M.Tech. (Biotechnology), Sardar Vallabh Bhai Patel  University of Agriculture and Technology, Meerut


Mr. Deepak Singh


Email: deepaksingh2495[at]gmail[dot]com


Ms. Suryasikha Mohanty, B.Sc. (Chemistry), Rama Devi Womens’ University, Bhubaneswar

Email: kunmunmohanty123[at]gmail[dot]com

Ms. Laxmipriya Pattanaik

Email: nikita.p84[at]gmail[dot]com

Ms. Jyotshna Priyadarshini Barik


Dr. Praveen Barrodia, M.Sc. (Biotechnology), University of Rajasthan, Jaipur

PhD Student: September 2012 – November 2018

Current Position: Post-Doctoral Fellow, MD Anderson Cancer Center, Texas, USA

Email: praveenbarrodia[at]gmail[dot]com

Dr. Supriya Borah, M.Sc., University of Agricultural Sciences, Dharwad

PhD Student: February 2013 – October 2019

Current Position: Post-Doctoral Fellow, Cedars-Sinai Medical Center, California, USA

Email: layanika[at]gmail[dot]com

Pranita Rout, B.Sc. (Zoology), Kendrapara Autonomous College, Kendrapara

Technician – Dr Amaresh Panda and Dr Mamoni Dash Lab. Institute of Life Sciences

Email: pranita[dot]liza[dot]09[at]gmail[dot]com




Extramural Grants as PI

“Understanding the development and function of kidney using zebrafish” funded by Science and Engineering Research Board, MoST, Government of India (2017-2021).

“Tumour vascular targeting using small molecule inhibitors” funded by Department of Biotechnology, MoST, Government of India (2015-2018).


rkswain@ils.res.inNalco Square, Chandrasekhar Pur, Bhubaneswar-751023, India0091 674 2300728(0674) 2304 301, 2304 312(Lab)




I always have openings for talented and highly motivated PhD students. I take PhD students through ILS PhD program. ILS advertises intake of PhD students typically in December and June each year. PhD candidates should have a master’s degree (with 60% mark or equivalent grade) and qualification in one of the national entrance tests (CSIR/UGC-JRF, DBT-JRF, UGC-RGNF, ICMR-JRF etc.). Please write to me anytime during the year if you are interested to join our lab. and I can inform you about ILS advertisements.

Candidates wishing to join my group as a post-doctoral fellow should be highly motivated, technically accomplished and should be interested to use zebrafish as a model organism to understand human disease biology. Prior experience in molecular biology, developmental biology, cell biology, imaging, genomics, bioinformatics etc. will be considered favourably. Please write to me if you are interested to join my group and I can sponsor you for various postdoctoral fellowships.