HRP SU21-28: Research Opportunity with Dr. Rajkumar Verma

Project Mentor

Dr. Rajkumar Verma
Department of Neuroscience

Undergraduate Research Opportunity Description

Project Description In one of the main projects of the lab, we study role of purinergic receptors P2X4 (a receptor for ATP) in stroke pathology. In brief, following a stroke, a burst of ATP is released from dying brain cells which further activates both neurons and microglial P2X4R to mediate fast excitatory neurotransmission via cation influx. Excessive activation of P2X4R causes the release of several pro-inflammatory cytokines at the early time point of ischemic injury. However, contrary to the effects of acute activation, chronic inhibition or absence of this receptor may impair stroke recovery. Therefore, given this dual temporal role of P2X4R in ischemic injury, we are systematically exploring for its therapeutic potential in post-stroke recovery.
Project Direction Our lab is interested to identify, validate and develop novel drug targets and candidate drugs for the treatment of ischemic stroke using both clinical and pre-clinical research settings. In addition, we are also interested in the development of new animal models of ischemic stroke injury and recovery.
Mentorship and Supervision The student will be trained for various behavior analysis both at pre and post-stroke recovery time point mostly by lab tech or postdoc in lab. I will perform overall supervision during various stages their projects. If time permitted, My lab staff will also train the student for some molecular biology work like RT-PCR, ELISA, immunohistochemistry, etc. We have a weekly or lab meeting and students will also take part in those meetings and will present her/his work. This will give me an opportunity to monitor their progress. Also, students are encouraged to listen and take part in weekly departmental journal club/seminar activity. I plan to provide feedback via email at the end of the semester.
Student Qualifications I would prefer someone interested and/or experienced (preferable but not essential) in rodent behavior and molecular biology. Candidate interested in Neuroscience or Cardiovascular Science research will be preferred.
Summer Schedule Options Research Dates: May 24 to July 30, 2021*
Schedule: M-F, 8am-4:30pm
*This opportunity cannot be pursued virtually and may be cancelled if there are pandemic-related restrictions on research for summer 2021.
Project Continuation Fall 2021, Spring 2022
Academic Year Time Commitment 6- 9 hours/week
Possible Thesis Project Yes


Submit an online application for this research opportunity at The application deadline is Monday, February 1, 2021.

This application requires a cover letter, a resume or CV, a brief statement of research interests, and a brief statement of career interests.