Sujoy Kumar Das Gupta

Sujoy Kumar Das Gupta
Emeritus Scientist

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Previous appointments:

Postdoctoral Research Associate at the University of Texas Health Centre At Tyler, Texas USA. (1987-1990)

Postdoctoral Research Associate , Dept. of Biochemistry, University Of Delhi South Campus. (1991-1994) 

Professor, and Chairman, Dept. Of Microbiology (retired 31st July 2021)

Research interests:

My lab is interested to understand the molecular biology of Mycobacteria and its phages. Various species of Mycobacteria, Mycobacterium tuberculosis (Mtb), for example, can cause the deadly disease tuberculosis (TB). Even though Mtb was discovered over a hundred years ago, we have been unable to eradicate TB. Existing drugs often fail to act as these organisms become drug-resistant and sometimes tolerant. To develop novel therapies for TB, we need to understand mycobacterial molecular biology in detail. My lab addresses these issues with the help of Mycobacteriophages, the phages that infect and kill Mycobacteria. Our approach involves infecting Mycobacteria with Mycobacteriophages and studying the resulting molecular and metabolic changes. By taking this approach, we have gained considerable new information about mycobacterial metabolism, which could be used for drug development against Mtb.


Address: Department of Microbiology
Centenary Campus
Bose Institute
P-1/12 C.I.T. Scheme VII-M
Kolkata - 700054, India
E-Mail: sujoy[at]
Phone: +91-33-25693236


In January 1994, Prof. Das Gupta joined Bose Institute as a faculty member of the Department of Microbiology. He retired in July 2021 from Bose Institute after serving the Dept of Microbiology as its Chairman for many years. Currently, he is a CSIR- Emeritus Scientist in the same Department. At Bose Institute, his research program is mainly targeted toward understanding the molecular biology of Mycobacteria and its phages and plasmids. A significant program in his lab is investigating the replication mechanism of pAL5000, a mycobacterial plasmid. While exploring this aspect, Prof. Das Gupta's lab presented a series of novel findings. Thus, his lab first demonstrated that the folding properties of polypeptides are enhanced remarkably if their synthesis occurs in a translationally coupled manner. The other novel outcome of his investigations was the finding that a replication factor of the mycobacterial plasmid pAL5000 is highly related to sigma factors, which are usually known to be associated with transcription. This investigation led his lab to propose that in the evolutionary past when life was emerging on earth, transcription and replication were brought about by the same or similar factors. 

In the area of Mycobacteriophage research, Prof. Das Gupta has investigated how they interact with mycobacteria. His research has given new insight into how mycobacteriophages infect mycobacteria, causing their death. Two publications in which he was the corresponding author were selected as spotlight articles in the journals, Journal of Bacteriology and Applied Environmental Microbiology. The phenomenon of Mycobacteriophage-induced mycobacterial cell death has been investigated in detail using cell biological and molecular techniques. The research in his lab indicates that cell death following mycobacteriophage infection involves an apoptotic process caused by the induced expression of the MazF toxin gene. 

Recently, Prof. Das Gupta's laboratory has been using CRISPR tools to understand various aspects of mycobacterial metabolism. The laboratory has revealed that regulated expression of glucose-6-phosphate dehydrogenase gene is necessary for the preferred use of glycerol by   Mycobacterium smegmatis for its growth. In another study using CRISPR-mediated inhibition technology, his group demonstrated how the respiratory quinone menaquinone controls the expression of genes encoding stress-related proteins such as DinB2, an error-prone DNA repair protein.


  1. Das Gupta, S. K. and Mandal, R.K. (1988). Cloning and Characterization of ribosomal RNA genes of the Catfish Heteropneustes fossilis. Ind. J. Biochem. Biophys. 25: 518-522.
  2. Das Gupta, S. K. , Datta, U and Mandal, R.K. (1989 ). Organization and size class homogeneity of rRNA genes of Catfish Heteropneustes fossilis.Ind.  J. Biochem. and Biophys. 26: 1-4.
  3. Das Gupta, S. K., Shivakumar, C. V. and Das, G.C. (1993). Identification of proteins that bind to the F441 locus of polyoma virus -B enhancer that are required for its activity in Embryonal Carcinoma cells. J. Gen .Virol. 74: 597- 606.
  4. Das Gupta, S. K., Bashyam, M. D.  and Tyagi, A. K. (1993). Cloning and assessment of mycobacterial promoters by using a plasmid shuttle vector. J. Bacteriol. 175: 5186-5192.
  5. Bashyam, M.D., Kaushal, D., Das Gupta, S. K. and Tyagi A. K. (1996) A study of the mycobacterial transcriptional apparatus : Identification of novel features in promoter elements. J. Bacteriol  178: 4847 - 4853.
  6. Jain, S., Kaushal, D., Das Gupta, S. K. and Tyagi A. K. (1997).  Construction of  shuttle vectors for genetic manipulation and molecular analysis of mycobacteria. Gene.190: 37 - 44.
  7. Ghosh, C., Nandy, R.K., Das Gupta, S. K., Balakrishna N., Hall, R. H.  and Ghose, A.C. (1997). A search for cholera toxin (CT) , Toxin regulated pilus (TCP), the regulatory element  ToxR and other virulence factors in Non OI / Non- O139 Vibrio Cholera. Microbial Pathogenesis. 22: 199-208.
  8. Das Gupta, S. K, Kaushal, D and Tyagi, A. K. (1998). Expression systems for study of mycobacterial gene regulation and development of recombinant BCG vaccines. Biochem Biophys Res Commun. 246: 797-804
  9. Ghosh, S., Pal, S., Das Gupta, S. K. and Majumder, S (1998). Lipoarabinomannan induced cytotoxity effects in human mononuclear cells. FEMS Immunology and Medical Microbiology 2: 181-188.
  10. Chawla, M., and. Das Gupta, S. K. (1999). Transposition induced instability in E. coli - Mycobacteria shuttle vectors. Plasmid. 41: 135-140.
  11. Chatterjee, S., Mahasweta, M and Das Gupta, S. K. (2000). A high yielding mutant of mycobacteriophage L1 and its application as a diagnostic tool. FEMS Microbiol letts. 188: 47 - 53.
  12. Tyagi, A. K., Das Gupta, S. K. and Jain, S. (2000). Gene expression: reporter technologies. In Molecular Genetics of Mycobacteria (ed. Hatfull, G. F. and Jacobs, W. R.). ASM press, Washington D. C. p 131-147.
  13. Basu, A., Chawla-Sarkar, M., Chakrabarti, S. and Das Gupta, S. K. (2002). Origin binding activity of the mycobacterial plasmid pAL5000 replication protein RepB is stimulated through interactions with host factors and coupled expression of repA. J. Bacteriol. 184: 2204-14.
  14. Basu, A., Chakrabarty, S., and Das Gupta, S. K. (2004). Translational coupling to an upstream gene promotes folding  of the mycobacterial plasmid pAL5000 replication protein RepB, into an active structure resulting in increased origin binding activity. J. Bacteriol. 186: 335-342.
  15. Abhik Saha, Archna Sharma, Amlanjyoti Dhar, Bhabatarak Bhattacharyya, Siddhartha Roy, and Sujoy K. Das Gupta (2005). Antagonists of Hsp16.3, a small molecular weight mycobacterial chaperon and virulence factor, derived from phage-displayed peptide libraries. Applied and Environmental  Microbiology 71(11):7334-44
  16. Sharma, S., Saha, A., Bhattacharjee,  S.,  Majumdar, S. and Das Gupta S. K. (2006). Specific and randomly derived immunoactive peptide mimotopes of  mycobacterial antigens. Clin. Vaccine Immunol. 13 (10): 1143-54.
  17. Mandal S, Chaterjee S, Dam B, Roy P, and Das Gupta S K. (2007). The dimeric repressor SoxR binds cooperatively to the promoter(s) regulating expression of the sulfur oxidation (sox) operon of Pseudaminobacter salicylatoxidans KCT001. Microbiology, 153: 80-91.
  18. Mitra G, Saha A, Gupta TD, Poddar A, Das KP, Das Gupta SK, Bhattacharyya B. (2007). Chaperone-mediated inhibition of tubulin self-assembly. Proteins. 7, 112-20.
  19. Dam B, Mandal S, Ghosh W, Das Gupta S K, and Roy P. (2007). The S4-intermediate pathway for the oxidation of thiosulfate by the chemolithoautotroph Tetrathiobacter kashmirensis and inhibition of tetrathionate oxidation by sulfite. Research in Microbiology, 158: 330-338.
  20. Chatterjee S, Basu A, Basu A, Das Gupta SK. (2007) DNA bending in the mycobacterial plasmid pAL5000 origin-RepB complex. J Bacteriol. 189(23):8584-92
  21. Das Gupta, T., Bandyopadhyay B. and Das Gupta S. K. (2008) Modulation of DNA-binding activity of Mycobacterium tuberculosis HspR by chaperones. Microbiology ; 154: 484-490.
  22. Bhattacharya B., Giri N., Mahasweta M. and  Das Gupta, S. K. (2008). Cloning, characterizationand expressionanalysis of nucleotide metabolism-related genes of mycobacteriophage L5. FEMS Microbiology letters 2008, 280(1):64-72.
  23. Giri N, Bhowmik P, Bhattacharya B, Mitra M, Das Gupta S. K. Mycobacteriophage D29 gene 65 encodes an early expressed protein that functionsas a structure specific nuclease. J. Bacteriol. (2009), 191, 958-967
  24. Dam B, Ghosh W, and Das Gupta S K. (2009) Conjugative Type 4 Secretion System of a novel large plasmid from the chemoautotroph Tetrathiobacter kashmirensis and construction of shuttle vectors for Alcaligenaceae. Applied and Environmental Microbiology, 75(13): 4362-4373.
  25. Ghosh, W., S. Mallick, and S. K. DasGupta. (2009). Origin of the Sox multienzyme complex system in ancient thermophilic bacteria and coevolution of its constituent proteins. Res Microbiol 160:409-20.
  26. Ghosh, W., A. George, A. Agarwal, P. Raj, M. Alam, P. Pyne, and S. K. Das Gupta (2011). Whole-genome shotgun sequencing of the sulfur-oxidizing chemoautotroph Tetrathiobacter kashmirensis. J Bacteriol 193:5553-4.
  27. Basu, A., S. Chatterjee, S. Chatterjee, and S. K. Das Gupta. (2012). An Evolutionary link between the mycobacterial plasmid pAL5000 replication protein RepB and Extra Cytoplasmic Function (ECF) family of sigma factors. J Bacteriol. 194: 1331-1341
  28. Bandyopadhyay, B.,  Das Gupta, T., Roy, D., and S. K. Das Gupta. DnaK Dependence of the Mycobacterial Stress-Responsive Regulator HspR Is Mediated through Its Hydrophobic C-Terminal Tail. J. Bacteriol 194, no. 17 (2012): 4688-4697.
  29. Kirtania P, Bhattacharya B, Das Gupta SK. (2014). Mycobacteriophage L5Gp56, a novel member of  the NrdH family of redoxins. FEMS Microbiol Lett 357:16-22.
  30. Dutta S, Bhawsinghka N, Das Gupta SK. (2014). Gp66, a calcineurin family phosphatase encoded by  mycobacteriophage D29, is a 2', 3' cyclic nucleotide phosphodiesterase that negatively regulates phage growth. FEMS Microbiol Lett doi:10.1111/1574-6968.12625.
  31. Bhowmik P, Das Gupta SK. (2015). Biochemical Characterization of a Mycobacteriophage Derived DnaB  Ortholog Reveals New Insight into the Evolutionary Origin of DnaB Helicases. PLoS One 10:e0134762.
  32. Samaddar, S., R. K. Grewal, S. Sinha, S. Ghosh, S. Roy, and S. K. Das Gupta. (2016). Dynamics of Mycobacteriophage-Mycobacterial Host Interaction: Evidence for Secondary Mechanisms for Host Lethality. Applied and environmental microbiology 82:124-133.  Selected as spotlight article.
  33. Ghosh, S., S. Samaddar, P. Kirtania, and S. K. Das Gupta. (2016). A DinB Ortholog Enables Mycobacterial Growth under dTTP-Limiting Conditions Induced by the Expression of a Mycobacteriophage-Derived Ribonucleotide Reductase Gene. Journal of bacteriology 198:352-362. Selected as spotlight article.
  34. Kirtania P, Ghosh S, Bhawsinghka N, Chakladar M, Das Gupta SK. (2016). Vitamin C induced DevR-dependent synchronization of Mycobacterium smegmatis growth and its effect on the proliferation of mycobacteriophage D29. FEMS Microbiol Lett. 363, fnw097.
  35. Chatterjee, S., Patra, M. M., Samaddar, S., Basu, A. & Gupta, S. K. D (2017) Mutual interaction enables the mycobacterial plasmid pAL5000 origin binding protein RepB to recruit RepA, the plasmid replicase, to the origin. Microbiology 163 (4), 595-610.
  36. Bhawsinghka N, Dutta A, Mukhopadhyay J, Das Gupta SK. (2018) A transcriptomic analysis of the mycobacteriophage D29 genome reveals the presence of novel stoperator-associated promoters in its right arm. Microbiology ;164(9):1168-79.
  37. Madhurima Roy Anirban Kundu Anirban Bhunia Sujoy Das Gupta Soumya De Amit Kumar Das. Structural characterization of VapB46 antitoxin from Mycobacterium tuberculosis: insights into VapB46–DNA binding. 2019: The FEBS Journal. 286: 1174-1190.
  38. Apurba Sarkar,Shreya Ghosh,Rahul Shaw,Madhu Manti Patra,Fatema Calcuttawala, Noyonika Mukherjee, Sujoy K. Das Gupta . Mycobacterium tuberculosis thymidylate synthase (ThyX) is a target for plumbagin, a natural product with antimycobacterial activity. PlosOne 2020.
  39. Shrestha Ghosh, Rahul Shaw, Apurba Sarkar, Sujoy K Das Gupta. Evidence of positive regulation of mycobacteriophage D29 early gene expression obtained from an investigation using a temperature-sensitive mutant of the phage. FEMS Microbiology letters.  FEMS Microbiol Lett. 2020 Nov 23;367(21):fnaa176. doi: 10.1093/femsle/fnaa176. PMID: 33119086.
  40. Saptarshi Sinha, Sourabh Samaddar, Sujoy K Das Gupta, Soumen Roy, Network approach to mutagenesis sheds insight on phage resistance in mycobacteria, Bioinformatics, Volume 37, Issue 2, 15 January 2021, Pages 213–220,
  41. Ghosh P, Barman A, Gupta SK. Induced expression of the zwf gene in the presence of glucose contributes to lowering of glucose 6-phosphate level and consequently reduction of growth rate of Mycobacterium smegmatis. Microbiology. 2021 Jul 8;167(7):001067.
  42. Patra, Madhu Manti, Poulami Ghosh, Shreya Sengupta, and Sujoy K. Das Gupta. "DNA binding and gene regulatory functions of MSMEG_2295, a repressor encoded by the dinB2 operon of Mycobacterium smegmatis." Microbiology 167, no. 10 (2021): 001097.
  43. Sengupta, Shreya, Niketa Bhawsinghka, Rahul Shaw, Madhu Manti Patra, and Sujoy K. Das Gupta. "Mycobacteriophage D29 induced association of Mycobacterial RNA polymerase with ancillary factors leads to increased transcriptional activity." Microbiology 168, no. 3 (2022): 001158.
  44. Calcuttawala F, Shaw R, Sarbajna A, Dutta M, Sinha S, K. Das Gupta S. Apoptosis like symptoms associated with abortive infection of Mycobacterium smegmatis by mycobacteriophage D29. Plos one. 2022 May 17;17(5):e0259480.
  45. Barman, Anik, Madhu Manti Patra, and Sujoy K. Das Gupta. "The respiratory lipoquinone, menaquinone, functions as an inducer of genes regulated by the Mycobacterium smegmatis repressor MSMEG_2295." Microbiology 168, no. 5 (2022): 001192 
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    Visiting Faculty, Department of Biochemistry, Calcutta University

    Visiting faculty. Department of Microbiology, St Xavier's College

    Member, Ph.D. committees of Dept. Of Microbiology and Presidency Unibersity

    Member of Institute of Health Science, Presidency University, BOS.


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