National Institute of Plant Genome Research
Digital India     
    Dr. Jitendra K. Thakur
    Staff Scientist V, Plant Mediator Lab
    M.Phil., Ph.D. University of Delhi South Campus
    Phone: 91-11-26741612/14/17 Extn. 221
    Direct: 91-11-26735221
Visiting Faculty (April - August 2014): Department of Biochemistry & Cellular & Molecular Biology, University of Tennessee, Knoxville, USA.
Scientist (Oct 2009 - present): National Institute for Plant Genome Research, New Delhi, India.
Assistant Professor (Sep 2008- Sep 2009): Indian Institute of Science Education & Research - Kolkata, Mohanpur, India.
Research Fellow (Jan 2004 - Aug 2008): Harvard Medical School/MGH Cancer Center, Boston, USA.
 Awards, Scholarships & Fellowships
Fellowship for Medical Discovery (ECOR-FMD), Massachussets Genreal Hospital, Boston, USA. 2006-2008
Financial Aid Award, Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory, New York, USA. 2006
Keystone Scholarship 2002
IAPTC&B Fellowship 2002
Prof. Archana Sharma Memorial Award given by Indian Science Congress Association. 2017
Innovative Young Biotechnologist Award (IYBA) from DBT, Govt. of India. 2008
INSA (Indian National Science Academy) medal for Young Scientist. 2008
Junior and Senior Research Fellowships, CSIR-UGC-NET, 2000-2003
DBT scholarship for M.Sc.(Biotechnology). 1994-1996
Membership of Academic Honours Society of Mathematics on the basis of merit. Christian College, Lucknow. 1993
 Research Interests
1. In higher eukaryotes, protein-coding genes are regulated by diverse sequence-specific transcription factors ensuring proper growth, development and functioning of the organism. The main point of regulation of expression of such genes is the transcription initiation process engaging transcription factors, co-factors, multi-subunit enzyme RNA polymerase II and general transcription factors at the promoter of the gene. One co-factor, named Mediator, is a gigantic multi-protein complex which functions as an adaptor between transcription factors bound to the regulatory elements, and general transcriptional machinery. Due to complicated network of multitude of participants in the transcriptional machinery, despite paramount importance, we do not know the molecular details of Mediator functioning. Our lab is studying the arrangement and organization of subunits to understand the possible architecture of Mediator complex in plants. We are trying to understand how different subunits contribute to structural integrity maintenance of the complex. We are also interested to know if any plant Mediator subunit has its own independent existence and individuality.
2. Epigenetic modifications of chromatin plays very important role in programming the gene expression network. Available literature suggests that many genomic loci are epigenetically modified during reproductive phases of plant life cycle. However, we do not know how these epigenetic modifications drive different phases of seed development. Our laboratory is interested in unravelling the basic aspect of epigenetic regulation of seed development in rice.
 Group Members
Dr. Malini NagulapalliResearch Associate
Dr. Subhasis SamantaResearch Associate
Ms. Nidhi DwivediPh.D student
Mr. Pradeep DahiyaPh.D student
Mr. Sourobh MajiPh.D student
Mr. Vinay KumarPh.D student
Mr. Angad KumarPh.D student
Ms. Rupali KumariPh.D student
Mr. Arvind Rai SRF
Ms. Harshita Bharti Saxena JRF
 Former Lab Members
Dr. Divya S. BhatResearch Associate
Dr. Tanvir-Ul-Hassan DarResearch Associate
Ms. Richa Pasrija JRF
 Selected Publications
Dahiya P, Bhat DS and Thakur JK (2016) Expression of AtMed15 of Arabidopsis in yeast causes flocculation and increases ethanol production in yeast culture. Scientific Reports 6, 27967. Doi:10.1038/srep27967.
(Covered in news media like The Telegraph, Nature India and Vigyan Prasar)
Malik N*, Dwivedi N*, Singh AK, Parida SK, Agarwal P, Thakur JK, Tyagi AK (2016) An integrated genomic strategy delineates candidate Mediator genes regulating grain size and weight in rice. Scientific Reports6:23253. Doi10.1038/srep23253
Nagulapalli M, Maji S*, Dwivedi N*, Dahiya P and Thakur JK (2016) Evolution of disorder in Mediator complex and its functional relevance. Nucleic Acids Res. 44: 1591-1612.
(Awarded Best Paper Award in SubDIC category during BTISNet meeting, 2016)
Samanta S Thakur JK (2015) Importance of Mediator complex in the regulation and integration of diverse signalling pathways in plants. Front. Plant Sci. 6:757 doi: 10.3389/fpls.2015.00757
Thakur JK, Yadav A and Yadav G (2013) Molecular recognition by the KIX domain and its role in gene regulation. Nucleic. Acids Res. (In Press)
Sharma S, Verma S, Vasudevan M, Samanta S, Thakur JK, Kulshreshtha R (2013) The interplay of HuR and mir-3134 in regulation of AU rich transcriptome. RNA Biol 10: 1283-1290.
Thakur JK, Agarwal P, Parida SK, Bajaj D and Pasrija R (2013) Sequence and expression analyses of KIX domain proteins suggest their importance in seed development and determination of seed size in rice, and genome stability in Arabidopsis. Mol. Genet. Genomics 288: 329-346.
Pasrija R, Thakur JK (2013) Tissue specific expression profile of Mediator genes in Arabidopsis. Plant Signal Behav 8: 5, e23983.
Pasrija R, Thakur JK (2012) Analysis of differential expression of Mediator subunit genes in Arabidopsis. Plant Signal & Behav 7: 1676-1686.
Naar AM and Thakur JK (2009) Nuclear Receptor-Like transcription factors in fungi. Genes & Development 23: 419-32.
Thakur JK, Arthanari H, Yang F, Chau KH, Wagner G and Naar AM (2009) Mediator subunit Gal11p/MED15 is required for fatty acid-dependent gene activation by yeast transcription factor Oaf1p. J Biol Chem 284: 4422-4428.
Thakur JK, Arthanari H, Yang F, Breger J, Fan X, Sun J, Li D, Struhl K, Moye-Rowley S, Mylonakis E, Cormack B, Wagner G and Naar AM (2008) A nuclear receptor-like pathway regulating multidrug resistance in fungi. Article in Nature 452: 604-609. [Covered in News & Views section by Andre Goffeau, Nature, 2008, 452: 541-542; in Perspective section by Monk and Goffeau, Science, 2008, 321: 367-369] [F1000 factor 9.8 Exceptional;]
Thakur JK, Jain M, Tyagi AK and Khurana JP (2005) Exogenous auxin enhances the degradation of a light down-regulated and nuclear-localized OsiIAA1, an Aux/IAA protein from rice, via proteasome. Biochemica et Biophysica Acta 1730: 196-205.
Thakur JK, Malik MR, Bhatt V, Reddy MK, Sopory SK, Tyagi AK and Khurana JP (2003) A POLYCOMB group gene of rice, OsiEZ1, codes for a nuclear-localized protein expressed preferentially in young seedlings and during reproductive development. Gene 314: 1-13.
Thakur JK, Tyagi AK and Khurana JP (2001) OsIAA1, an Aux/IAA cDNA from Rice, and Its Expression as Influenced by Auxin and Light. DNA Research 8(5): 193-203.
Thakur JK, Dahiya P and Bhat DS (2012) Recombinant microorganisms and uses thereof. [Provisional Indian Patent Application No. 3699/DEL/2012]
 Book Edited
Gene and Protein Engineering; Biotechnology Volume 5. Guest Editor Jitendra K. Thakur. Studium Press LLC, USA.
 Book Chapters
Samanta S and Thakur JK. Role of plant Mediator complex in stress response. In Elucidation of Abiotic Stress Signaling in Plants. Springer Science+Business Media LLC, New York, USA.
Khurana JP, Tripathi L, Kumar D, Thakur JK and Meghna R. Malik. Cell Differentiation in Shoot Meristems - A Molecular Perspective.In Plant Biotechnology and Molecular Markers, In: Srivastava, P.S., Narula, A. and Srivastava, S. (eds.), Plant Biotechnology and Molecular Markers, pp. 366-385, Anamaya Publishers, New Delhi.
Tyagi AK, Khuarana JP, Sharma AK, Mohanty A, Dhingra A, Raghuvanshi S, Mukhopadhyay A, Gupta V, Anand S, Kathuria H, Bhushan S, Thakur JK and Kumar D. Organ-specific gene expression and genetic transformation for improvement of rice. In: Khush, G.S., Brar, D.S. and Hardy, B. (eds), Advances in Rice Genetics, pp. 552-555, International Rice Research Institute, Manila.
 Research in news media
Brewery boon: gene to tweak yeast behavior. The Telegraph June 27, 2016.
Scientists engineer yeast to increase alcohol yield. Nature India June 17, 2016 doi:10.1038/nindia.2016.80
Discovery Shows How Fungi Pump Up Defense, Focus May 2, 2008
Study identifies mechanism underlying multidrug resistance in fungi, Bio-Medicine April 2, 2008
Discovery Of Mechanism Underlying Multidrug Resistance In Fungi Could Improve Treatment Of Dangerous Infections In Immune-Compromised Patients, Medicine News Today April 3, 2008