Dr Amitabha Chattopadhyay was born on 9th October, 1956 in Calcutta (now Kolkata). He obtained his B.Sc. with Honors in Chemistry from St. Xavier’s College in Calcutta and his M.Sc. from IIT, Kanpur. He received his Ph.D. in 1987 from the State University of New York (SUNY) at Stony Brook, U.S.A. In his Ph.D. research, he developed a convenient and sensitive method, known as the parallax method, to determine membrane penetration depths of a wide variety of membrane-bound fluorophores including proteins and peptides. The parallax method for analysis of membrane penetration depth became very popular in subsequent years. He carried out his postdoctoral work at the University of California, Davis, U.S.A., during 1987-89. In his postdoctoral work, he worked on lipid-protein interactions in the nicotinic acetylcholine receptor from Torpedo californica. He joined the Centre for Cellular and Molecular Biology, Hyderabad, in 1989. He is currently on the editorial boards of several international journals. He has also taught at a number of universities and institutes in India and abroad. Dr. Chattopadhyay has been active in editorial capacity of reputed scientific journals. He has guest edited several issues of journals in areas such as biomembranes and application of fluorescence spectroscopy and microscopy to biological research. These special issues have been very popular.
ACADEMIC & RESEARCH CONTRIBUTIONS: Dr. Chattopadhyay’s work is focused on monitoring organization, dynamics and function in biological membranes in healthy and diseased conditions. His group has made pioneering contribution on the role of membrane lipids in regulating the function of G-protein coupled receptors (GPCR). Subsequently, his group showed that the activity of the serotonin1A receptor is impaired in pathogenic conditions such as the Smith-Lemli-Opitz Syndrome (SLOS). Another seminal contribution from Dr. Chattopadhyay’s laboratory is the role of membrane cholesterol in leishmanial infection.
AWARDS: Dr. Chattopadhyay was elected to the Fellowship of The National Academy of Sciences (1998), Indian Academy of Sciences (1999), Andhra Pradesh Akademi of Sciences (2003) and Indian National Science Academy (2005). He was awarded the Shanti Swarup Bhatnagar Prize (2001), Ranbaxy Research Award (2006), Sreenivasaya Memorial Award (the Society of Biological Chemists) (2000), Raman Research Fellowship (CSIR) (1996), and The Bires Chandra Guha Memorial Lecture award (2008).