Research & Development


RESEARCH HIGHLIGHTS ARCHIVE

Title : Targeting G-quadruplex for cancer

In structural biology lab, we have been working on elucidation of structural and molecular basis of Drug-Nucleic acid interactions. In this context we have studied the interaction of small molecules of natural origin readily available in human diets with G-quadruplex DNA formed at various regions of human genome like telomeric DNA, promoter region of various proto-oncogenes such as c-myc, c-kit21, bcl2, etc. These genes are known to be involved in development and progression of various cancers. First of all, we have studied the interaction of flavonoids with G-quadruplex DNA formed by human telomeric DNA sequence. By employing detailed biophysical techniques like Circular Dichroism (CD), UV-Visible, steady state, and time resolved fluorescence spectroscopy, we have probed these interactions. Further, the structural basis of this interaction and we have reported the first solution structure of the complex formed by Quercetin and G-quadruplex DNA formed by human telomeric DNA sequence. Furthermore, we have explored the mechanism for anticancer activity of flavonoids.

 

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Research highlights from Discipline of Chemistry

 

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SIGNAL ANALYSIS RESEARCH LAB

In Signal Analysis Research Lab, we have been working in the broad area of biomedical signal processing based on the new nonlinear and non-stationary signal analysis techniques. We have proposed new methods for analysis and classification of normal and epileptic seizure electroencephalogram (EEG) signals, these methods can be applied for real-time detection of epileptic seizures from EEG signals.  We have also proposed new approaches for localization of epileptic focus, classification of sleep stages and human emotions, and detection of alcoholism using EEG signals. The heart rate variability (HRV) signals obtained from electrocardiogram (ECG) have been used to develop new methods for diagnosis of the patients suffering from coronary artery disease (CAD) and diabetes. We have proposed new techniques for analysis and classification of heart valve disorders based on phonocardiogram (PCG) signals.  

 

 

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STABILIZATION OF PHASES PRESENT IN PLASMA SPRAYED ALUMINA COATINGS

Stabilization of phases present in atmospheric plasma sprayed alumina coatings applied on steel substrates is possible by adding low quantity of Chromia to the alumina feedstock. Quantification of the different phases present in the coatings can be performed by subsequent use of Rietveld refinement method. Surface morphology, microhardness and wear behavior of the different coatings are also observed. Rietveld analyses performed on coatings ensure the stabilization of metastable phases present in the alumina coatings by chromia addition. Significant increase of the α-alumina and (AlxCr¬1-x)2O3 content is observed in alumina coatings with 4wt.% chromia content. This is supported by the improved hardness and wear resistant properties of the alumina coatings containing 4wt.% chromia in it. The minimum surface roughness of the coating is also observed for alumina coatings with 4wt.% chromia content among all the alumina coatings with different chromia content.

 

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DISCOVERY OF “FANO SCATTERING”

We have discovered a new phenomenon, named as "Fano scattering", which is possible in nanomaterials in low-frequency regime (a few wavenumbers). Suitably fabricated silicon nanostructures (Si NSs) were used as the physical system to harvest low-frequency acoustic phonons which can interact with an intraband quasi-continuum to give rise to Fano interaction as observed through Raman spectroscopy. A size-dependent asymmetry in Raman line shapes at low-frequency for Si NSs has been observed. The experimental asymmetry of Raman line shape has been explained by a theoretical model that incorporates the quantum-confined phonons as well as the contribution of intraband quasi-continuum. Upto now there was no any direct way to extract information about non-radiative transitions which play very important role at nanoscale and define the characteristics of nanomaterial.

 

 

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Title: Anomaly Detection in VoIP Systems

Session Initiation Protocol is a text-based protocol and is vulnerable to a range of denial of service (DoS) attacks. These DoS attacks can render the SIP servers/SIP proxy servers unusable by depleting memory and CPU time. In this work, we consider two types of DoS attacks, namely, flooding attacks and coordinated attacks for detection. Flooding attacks affect both stateless and stateful SIP servers while coordinated attacks affect stateful SIP servers. We model the SIP operation as discrete event system(DES) and design a new state transition machine, which we name as probabilistic counting deterministic timed automata (PCDTA) to describe the behaviour of SIP operations. We also identify different types of anomalies that can occur in a DES model, which appear in the form of illegal transitions, violating timing constraints, and appear in number which is otherwise not seen. Subsequently, we map various DoS attacks in SIP to a type of anomaly in DES. PCDTA can learn probabilities of various transitions and timings delay from a set of known non-malicious training sequences. A trained PCDTA can detect anomalies, and hence various DoS attacks in SIP. 

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Title: Improving the heat transfer characteristics of metal hydride beds without any negative effect on hydrogen absorption and desorption rates .

An experimental set was developed for measuring Effective Thermal Conductivity (ETC) of metal hydride beds. Two different types of metal hydride pellets were developed. Graphite flakes were mixed with La0.8Ce0.2Ni5 hydride for the first type of pellets. While in the second type, an augmentation structure made with copper wire mesh was embedded with the mixture of La0.8Ce0.2Ni5 hydride and graphite flakes. The ETC and hydrogen absorption and desorption rates of all the three types of La0.8Ce0.2Ni5 hydride beds namely, with loose MH powder (LMHP), pellets of MH powder and graphite fibers (PMHGF), and pellets of MH, graphite fibers with embedded copper wire mesh structure (PMHGFCu) were measured. The proposed structure are found promising to augment the ETC without loss in absorption and desorption rates.

 

 

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Title: Doped LaGaO3: Good White Light Emitters and Room Temperature Low Field Magneto-dielectric Materials

The search for the new material(s) for various electronic applications have dominated the research worldwide particularly after the development of silicon based tiny integrated circuits and BaTiO3 based tiny capacitors. During last five decades the nature of electronic devices has witnessed huge changes. Very small as well as energy efficient electronic devices are replacing the conventional electronic circuit elements. The white light emitting diode, spin valves devices are some of these real examples.
The material research laboratory of IIT Indore is engaged in the development of new materials for various electronic applications. Recently this laboratory has successfully demonstrated the potentials of Fe and Mn doped LaGaO3 as a white light emitting material and as a room temperature low field magneto-dielectric material respectively.

 

 

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Title: Performance Investigations on Mechanical Design and Motion Control of Planar Parallel Manipulators
me

This research also involves the study of quantitative estimation of error in parallel manipulators due to inaccurate placement of actuators, misalignments and sensor set point errors. Here we are studying a new family of manipulators which are having U-shaped square base and having three serial kinematic chains. Their performances in different configurations are studied numerically and experimentally, it helps to find out the best configurations among them in presence of errors. For perform trajectory tracking operations in manipulators having errors, task space based motion control schemes are studied and developed in this work. These planar parallel manipulators have a potential to serve in the field of manufacturing, positioning, material handling, physiotherapy etc. One of the potential applications of these manipulators is in the field of lower limb rehabilitation.

 

 

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Title: Controlling the electronic state by strain and Mn-doping in epitaxial thin films of NdNiO3
phy

RNiO3 (R= Rear earth ion) compounds compounds have applications in switches, sensors, photovoltaics and multiferroic devices.
This system shows a temperature driven first order metal to insulator transition, which is very sensitive to the external perturbations. We have studied a combined effect of Mn-doping and epitaxial strain on the metallic as well as insulating state of NdNiO3 thin films. The Reciprocal space maps show that undoped thin film is epitaxial and the epitaxy is maintained till higer Mn-doping. Our study reveals that a slight increase in the tensile strain via lattice mismatch can result in an order of magnitude difference in the resistivity for pure NdNiO3 thin films1,2. Moreover, the temperature dependent resistivity curves of pure NdNiO3 films demonstrate that the tensile strain increases the resistivity in a similar way for all temperatures. However, a crossover of resistivity curves is observed due to competing effects of doping and strain.

 

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Title: Structural Insight into the interaction of Flavonoids with secondary structures of DNA
bsbe

The interaction of the Flavonoids with human telomeric DNA sequence and promoter region of human oncogene that readily forms secondary structure was assessed by employing detailed biophysical techniques like CD spectroscopy, UV-Vis and steady state and time resolved fluorescence studies. The structural basis of the interaction was deduced by employing NMR spectroscopy that revealed that flavonoids bind to DNA and stabilize its structure. We have reported the first solution structure of this complex and deduced the mechanism for anticancer activity of flavonoids. It inhibits the cell growth by inducing apoptosis and it also down-regulates the gene expression in cancer cells upon binding. Our study highlights the potential of flavonoids as useful candidates for anti-cancer therapeutics by regulating DNA secondary structures.

 

 

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Title : Organometallics And Nanotech Catalysis Group
chem

Biomass to bio-fuel: Highly efficient ruthenium complexes based molecular catalysts were designed and synthesised for water based one-pot catalytic transformation of biomass components, such 2-furfural (furfural), 5-hydroxymethyl-2-furfural (5-HMF) and 5-methyl-2-furfural (5-MF) highly value added fine chemicals, such as levulinic acid (LA), and diketones, for bio-fuel application. Under a tandem catalytic condition, 1 mol% of Ru catalyst along with formic acid resulted in complete conversion of furfural to LA with high selectivity at 80 C. Experiments performed using structural analogues of the active catalyst inferred a structure–activity relationship for the observed superior catalytic activity of the studied Ru catalyst. Furthermore, due to the high aqueous solubility of the studied complexes, high recyclability, up to 4 catalytic runs, was achieved without any significant loss of activity.

 

 

 

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Title : Crystal Structure and Electronic Properties correlation in Functional Materials
physice

A simple result with deep implication in the field of spin-based electronics materials has recently been demonstrated by a group of researchers at IIT Indore. Here, the correlation between the magnetic ordering and local structural disorder in the unusual magnetic semiconductor, CdCr2Se4, has been investigated. These results are initial steps towards exploring the domain of spintronics and half-metallicity in Spinel Chalogenides.

 

CdCr2Se4 orders magnetically below TC ∼130K. The magnetic ordering is believed to result from strong competition between the direct Cr–Cr spin couplings and the Cr–Se–Cr exchange interactions.

 

 

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Title: Can dark matter be responsible to save the Universe ?
phy

The recent discovery of the Higgs boson at the Large Hadron Collider at CERN has made the fundamental particles even more interesting, completing the quest for discovering all particles embodied in the standard model(SM) of particle physics. However, the measured Higgs mass indicates that the Universe is resting in a metastable vacuum, waiting to make a transition to a much deeper vacuum in a distant future, if SM is valid up to the Planck scale. Such a transition will release an enormous amount of energy and destroy the present Universe. However, several astrophysical evidences of existence of dark matter suggest SM needs extension. At IIT Indore, Najimuddin Khan and Subhendu Rakshit have explored the idea that dark matter can help save the Universe from such a horrendous fate. Citing the example of two popular models of dark matter, where, the dark matter consists of scalar particles arising from extending SM by a gauge singlet or doublet scalars, the authors examined the parameter space of these models that imply stability of the Universe and explain the observed relic abundance of dark matter as well. The results were published in two Physical Review D research articles.

 

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Title: Design and development of Softcomputing and Data mining algorithms for handling Big Data
cse
The growing births of new intelligent system architectures are often due to the multi strategy learning and adaptation of advanced soft computing/data mining techniques in emerging challenges such as social media networks, genomics applications.  Such problems need to address the issues of Big Data for classification, clustering and feature selection, feature extraction.  Big data computing needs advanced technologies or methods to solve the issues of computational time to extract valuable information, in a realistic and practical time frame without compromising the models quality.  Therefore, the need for developing intelligent scalable algorithms has been felt, which will be able to perform classification, clustering and feature selection in optimal sense after adjusting their parameters in an adaptive way to accomplish faster solutions to address Big Data. Currently collaborating with Soyabean Research centre Indore and CDAC, Bioinformatics group Pune.

 

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Title: Probing magnetohydrodynamic turbulence through radio observations of galaxy cluster mergers
astronomy

A false-colour Xray image from the Chandra X-Ray observatory of the Bullet Cluster. Superposed are contours of the pressure/temperature distribution in the gas, determined from the Sunyaev-Zeldovich observations done by a team led by Dr. Siddharth Malu, with the Australia Telescope Compact Array. The hottest gas is seen by these S-Z observations (contours) is displaced from the densest regions traced by the X-ray emission (colours). This was the first time a high-resolution image of a merging/colliding system was done at 18 GHz, and reveals rich structure in pressure that has led to a re-examination of galaxy cluster collision models.

 

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Title: Numerical Methods for nonlinear Differential Equations
math

Developing efficient numerical methods for various types of differential equations is one of the important problems in science and technology. Recently numerical methods for partial differential equation based on wavelets and finite difference method studied by many researchers. Dr. Vijesh and Mr. Harish Kumar developed a new numerical method based on wavelet for semi-linear parabolic differential equation with systematic convergence analysis. The proposed scheme produces higher accuracy with less number of grid points compared with methods available in the recent literature. [Ref: APPL. MATH. COMP., 266, 1163—1176]. Dr. Vijesh, Ms. Rupsha Roy and G. Chandhini proposed a modification in the quasilinearization iterative scheme for proving the existence and uniqueness result for fractional order differential equations. This modification reduces the computational complexity considerably for class of fractional order differential equations. [Ref: APPL. MATH. COMP., 266, 687--697].

 

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Title: Single Crystal Growth and Understanding the Mechanism of Superconductivity
na

Superconductivity is the field of an enormous interest with more than century ago discovery, due to potential applications of the superconductors from health to transport and ongoing debate of many decades for understanding the mechanism of superconductivity. Dr. Shirage and his group at IIT Indore, actively engaged in understanding the mechanism of superconductivity by growing sizably large single crystals and studying the physical properties. They study electro-magnetic properties, vortex mechanism [Nature Scientific Reports 5(2015) 10613], isotope effect, etc to understand the mechanism of superconductivity. Dr. Shirage is renowned to invent the inverse isotope effect to understand the mechanism iron based high Tc superconductors [PRL 105(2010)037004].

 

Figure 1 Experimentally determined HC2 from the measurement of R-T on the single crystalline NbSe2 with and without defects. Inset shows the NbSe2 single crystal grown (dimensions 18 mm x 10 mm x 1 mm).

 

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Title: Structural Insights Reveal the Dynamics of the Repeating r(CAG) Transcript Found in Huntington’s Disease (HD) and Spinocerebellar Ataxias (SCAs)
na

Dr. Amit and his group is working on the structural and drug discovery aspect to target neurological diseases and cancer. Recently, article entitled “Structural Insights Reveal the Dynamics of the Repeating r(CAG) Transcript Found in Huntington’s Disease (HD) and Spinocerebellar Ataxias (SCAs)” (PlosOne, 2015) by Tawani and Kumar describes the structure and dynamics of the RNA trinulceotide repeat CAG. These trinucleotide repeats when extended beyond a certain limit, lead to the neurodegenerative diseases such as Huntington’s disease (HD) and Spinocerebellar Ataxias (SCAs). These repeats form special structure that sequesters the important proteins that lead to diseased condition. In order to explore the role of RNA structures in pathogenesis, this group has addressed the understanding of conformational flexibility and dynamic behavior of such RNA containing trinucleotide repeats. The study shows the dynamic nature of lxl nucleotide AA internal loops by crystal structure as well as by solution structure. The non-canonical pairing of adenine in 5´-CAG/3´-GAC motif samples in different syn and anti-conformations. This study reveals that small molecules or protein interactions proceed through conformational selection, which will be useful in understanding the potential structural consequences of ligand binding to r(CAG) repeats.

 

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Title: Detection and Prevention of DDoS Attack on Cloud Environment
na

Denial-of-service (DoS) and Distributed Denial of Service (DDoS) attacks are two major security restrictions for functionality and availability of Cloud services. In DoS attack, an intruder tries to prevent authorized users from retrieving the information or services. On the other hand, DDoS is a collaborative attack on functionality and availability of a victim cloud through multiple corrupted systems. Hence, DDoS attack is a complex security challenge for growth of Cloud Computing.

 

Third Party Auditor (TPA) based approach has been developed to detect and prevent the DDoS attack in Cloud environment. In this approach, a workstation is considered as a TPA for observation of the all packets reached to cloud servers and it works as an independent and trustworthy entity which logs all legitimate as well as malicious packets on the behalf of all cloud servers. Figure shows the architecture of proposed Cloud Shield. The Cloud Shield is able to traceback the origin of the attack based on Dempster Shafer Theory (DST) to analyze all packets.

 

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