CENTER FOR RESEARCH IN ENVIRONMENT AND SUSTAINABLE TECHNOLOGIES (CREST) Vineet K. Sharma, ArundhuthiGhatak, Nikita Agarawal, PritamNasipuri, J Sankar, Snighdha Thakur, and Ramya Sunder Raman Indian Institute of Science Education and Research (IISER) Bhopal
Objectives Of CREST • Scientific Capacity Building and Human Resource Development • Enhance the scientific understanding of local, regional, and national environmental issues with a specific focus on air, soil, and water quality. • Develop effective responses (sustainable technologies) to manage and mitigate environmental threats • Provide a platform for graduate and undergraduate research experience in environmental monitoring, management, and protection • Understand the cause-effect relationships between environmental changes, resource depletion and socio-economic development. Provide scientific inputs to policy makers • Ancillary Objectives • Create a pool of experts from various subject areas at IISERB and encourage multi-disciplinary research • Create public awareness and promote sustainable development
CREST-ACTIVITIES Measurements and substrates amenable to analyses Identifying/prioritizing analytes to be sampled • Chemical and Microbial Characterization • Trace elements, anions, cations, organic compounds – Molecular receptors for in-situ measurement • Isotopes of Cu, Hg, Zn, Mg, Fe and Cd • Characterizing bacterial diversity – water bodies, electrogenic, and radiation resistant • Field Measurements • Ambient air quality/climate effects - aerosols and gaseous co-pollutants • Built environments and indoor air quality • Water quality - fresh and contaminated • Soils and sands rich in natural radioactivity • Contribution of CREST to the National Response to Environmental Threats • Inputs to Environmental Policy Making • Development of Sustainable Technologies • HRD Prioritizing intervention and action Prioritizing regions and sectors Improved understanding of earth system interactions and sustainable manufacturing/technologies Provide inputs for model development and testing • Theory and Modeling • Aerosol source apportionment and dynamics • Earth system interactions • Metagenomics • Analysis of Satellite Imagery • Bioremediation • Life Cycle Analysis
Field Studies 1.Ambient aerosol over Bhopal – Sources and radiative effects Ambient fine particles over Bhopal - their optical properties and gaseous co-pollutants • 2. Metagenomics of microflora from extreme environments: Water samples from four hotsprings from central India is collected. 40 isolates of thermophillic bacteria has been obtained and 20 sequenced (2 published, one under review) 3. Airborne microbial community assessment using metagenomics: Protocol for community DNA isolation from filter papers has been standardized followed by metagenomic sequencing • 4. Biogeochemical cycling of Copper • Initial rock samples (~ 40 sandstones) in and around Bhopal have been collected to characterize their trace element and major element concentrations. These data will be compared to the soil, water, and plant data to understand trace element pathways. • 5. Monitoring earth resources through satellite imagery and field studies • To monitor the land use pattern around a multi-purpose reservoir, satellite images were obtained from USGS in and around Maithon dam, Jharkhand. The domains having low Normalized difference water index (NDWI) and high bareness index (NDBI) will be idenified as these areas represents maximum possibility of erosion. The areas showing positive correlation of vegetation index (NDVI) and NDWI are attributed to the most important areas for sustainable development of any area.
Development of molecular receptors for near-realtime monitoring of relevant analytes in different environments • Currently, we are developing a product based on this technique to analyse bicarbonate concentration in environmental waters such as lakes, rivers and related water bodies. • Using the same strategy, the remarkable sensitivity to detect CN− from the solution and solid phase envisages a pivotal step towards field-usable sensing. This can be a portable method for analysing cyanide in environmental waters and the receptor model works even under aqueous conditions and thus facilitating its viability.
Development of Sustainable Technologies • Metagenomics of extreme environments: Hot springs • Novel thermophillic bacteria, novel proteases, sulphur metabolizing genes, nitrogen fixation • Metagenomics of airborne microbial community • Microbial fingerprints can be developed looking at the seasonal variations in microbial community in air (healthy and pathogenic) which can help in quick assessment of air quality in cases of an epidemic outbreaks • Microbial Fuel Cell (MFC): A MFC to be developed based on the exoeltrogenic microbial community which can sustain on simple organic compounds • Novel tools for analysis of environmental samples and sequences • Method to assign the complete taxonomy to a newly sequenced bacterial genome • Fast and accurate functional annotation and functional classification of genes from environmental sequences • Recovering microbial genomes from environmental data • Rapid annotation of environmental genes using ML
MCICPMS (Thermo Neptune PLUS) 213nm Laser (NWR) Quadrupole-ICPMS (Thermo iCAP-Q) • Isotope analysis for understanding the chemodynamics of various species between the air, water and the soil systems • A quadrupole ICPMS has been commissioned for measurements of trace elements of various soil and water samples • Separation of Cu using ion chromatography is under way to measures isotopes of Copper • Biogeochemical cycling of Cu Alternate dark and light bands in Bhopal sandstones (being studied for paleo environmental reconstruction)
Research work in progress • Ambient aerosol and gaseous co-pollutants – sample collection at Bhopal • Genomic analysis of thermotolerant microbes and enzymes which can degrade hydocarbons: applications in oil spills bioremediations • Computation model development to assess source-specific radiative properties • Computation model development for aerosol dynamics • Development of a theoretical framework to use open dynamical systems theory in Earth systems modeling • Development of thermal Inertia image to identify the barren lands that are susceptible for erosion. • Optimal use of the barren land around the reservoir that will reduce the soil erosion patterns. • Establishment of Cu-isotopic cycle within a close system such as a lake
Outcomes – HRD and Publications Technical Personnel trained: 2 (Proj. Asst.) + 1 (SRF) + 3 (Post-doc) • Ph.Ds Produced: Nil Research Publications arising out of the present project: 13 (published) + 2 (under revision) Developed and managing a web-site for dissemination of CREST’s activities www.crest.iiserb.ac.in Research Infrastructure Developed
BMC Genomics,2015 Software and Methods Developed Genomics., 2015 Frontiers in Microbiology, 2016 BMC Genomcis., 2016 Plos One., 2014 Plos One, 2015
Commercialization Potential • Portable molecular receptor strips for quantifying bicarbonate, cyanide and ammonia • Inexpensive • Portable • Near real-time analysis • Microbial fuel cell using metagenomicapproach • Novel thermophillic proteases and other enzymes of industrial importance isolated from thermophillic environments from central India • Metagenomic profile of airborne pathogenic and non-pathogenic microbes which can be used for health and check the spread of epidemics Other Activities • Capacity-building activities including symposia, research conferences, lecture series, publication of peer-reviewed manuscripts and newsletters • Organizing outreach programmes for industry, research, academia, high school students and public
International Publications (15) • Prediction of Biofilm Inhibiting Peptides: An In Silico Approach. Gupta S, Sharma AK, Jaiswal SK, Sharma VK. Frontiers in Microbiology. 2016. doi: 10.3389/fmicb.2016.00949. • ProInflam: a webserver for the prediction of proinflammatory antigenicity of peptides and proteins. Gupta S, Madhu MK, Sharma AK, Sharma VK. Journal of Translational Medicine. 2016. • Prediction of peptidoglycan hydrolases- a new class of antibacterial proteins. Sharma AK, Kumar S, Kumar H, Dhakan DB, Sharma VK. BMC Genomics. 2016; 17(1):411. doi: 10.1186/s12864-016-2753-8. • Reconstruction of bacterial and viral genomes from multiple metagenomes. Gupta A, Kumar S, Prasoodanan VPK, Harish K, Sharma AK and Sharma VK. Frontiers in Microbiology. 2016. 7:469. doi: 10.3389/fmicb.2016.00469. • Draft Genome Sequence of Tepidimonastaiwanensis Strain MB2, a Chemolithotrophic Thermophile Isolated from a Hot Spring in Central India. Dhakan DB, Saxena, R, Chaudhary N, Sharma VK. Genome Announcements. 2016; 4(1):e01723-15. doi:10.1128/genomeA.01723-15. • Using the taxon-specific genes for the taxonomic classification of bacterial genomes. Gupta A & Sharma VK. BMC Genomics. 2015; 16(1):396. doi: 10.1186/s12864-015-1542-0. • Woods: A fast and accurate functional annotator and classifier of genomic and metagenomic sequences. Sharma AK, Gupta A, Kumar S, Dhakan DB, Sharma VK. Genomics, Volume 106(1) 2015 • 16S Classifier: A Tool for Fast and Accurate Taxonomic Classification of 16S rRNAHypervariable Regions in Metagenomic Datasets. Chaudhary N*, Sharma AK*, Agarwal P, Gupta. A, Sharma VK. PLoS ONE . 10(2):e0116106. 2015 • Using the taxon-specific genes for the taxonomic classification of bacterial genomes.Gupta A and Sharma VK. 2015. BMC Genomics. Accepted 2015 • Perylenebisimide-based multi-modal cyanide recognition: molecular logic gate deciphering magnetic memory units, MasoodAyoubKaloo, Ruchika Mishra and JeyaramanSankar*, J. Mater. Chem. C, 2015, 3, 1640-1644 • Corrole-BODIPY Dyads: Synthesis, Structure, Electrochemical and Photophysical properties, BijuBasumatary, Adiki Raja Sekhar, R. V. Ramana Reddy and JeyaramanSankar*, Inorg. Chem., 2015, 54 (9), pp 4257–4267. • First Example of a Modular Porphyrinoid Assembly Capable of Stabilizing Different Metal Ions in a Single Molecular Scaffold, MuthuchamyMurugavel, R. V. Ramana Reddy, DhananjayDey and JeyaramanSankar*, Chem Eur. J., 2015, accepted • Dual-mode chemodosimetric response of dibromo-BODIPY with anions, AdikiRajasekhar, R. V. Reddy and JeyaramanSankar*, Org. Biomol. Chem. 2015, Under revision • Reusable and Specific Proton Transfer Signalling by Inorganic Cyanide in Solution and Solid Phases, Chem. Comm. 2015, revised manuscript submitted. • Gallium(III)Corrole-BODIPY Hybrid: Novel Photophysical Properties and First Observation of B-F---F interactions, Dalton Trans. 2015, Under revision. • Unsymmetrically Functionalized Perylenebisimides Towards Modern Applications,JeyaramanSankar (Invited lecture, CRSI-Mid Year Symposium, NIT Trichy, July-2015) • Unsymmetrically Functionalized Perylenebisimides: Synthesis, Structure and Properties,Ruchika Mishra and JeyaramanSankar* (Invited Lecture, ICMAT-2015, Singapore) Acknowledgements We sincerely thank the Ministry of Human Resource Development (MHRD) and Indian Institute of Science Education and Research Bhopal (IISERB) for the financial support