Postdoctoral fellow (2016-Present)                                                                                                

Department of Microbiology and Immunology, Stanford University

Advisor: Dr. Peter Sarnow        

Project: “Dengue RNA-protein interactions that modulate infection in mosquito and human hosts” 

-       Developed high throughput RNA-centric and proteomics-based methods to identify host factors essential for flavivirus infection in human and mosquito cell culture systems.

-       Engineering novel antiviral interventions to block vector mediated viral transmission and replication.


Ph.D. (2010-2015)                                                                                                                                 

Department of Microbiology and Cell Biology, Indian Institute of Science 

Advisor: Dr. Saumitra Das

Thesis: “Host-pathogen interactions in Hepatitis C Virus (HCV) infection: Deciphering the role of host proteins and microRNAs”

-       Characterized the role of novel host proteins and miRNAs as potential drug targets in mitigating HCV infection using cell culture model systems.

-       Identified circulating biomarkers in HCV infected patient serum samples that affect viral pathogenesis and disease outcomes through RNA transcriptomics.


Master of Science, Biotechnology (2008-2010)                                                                               

Maharaja Sayajirao University, India 

Dissertation: “Role of a non-coding RNA in the pathogenicity of Pseudomonas aeruginosa”

Advisor: Dr. Mrinalini Nair          

Bachelor of Science, Biotechnology (2005-2008)                                                                         

Manipal Life Sciences Center, India 

Dissertation: “Role of Metals in Interferon-γ Mediated functional responses”

Advisor: Dr. Dipankar Nandi



Shwetha S*, Weng KF, Ooi YS, Belk J, Carette JC, Flynn RA, Sarnow P*. Loquacious Modulates Flaviviral RNA Replication in Mosquito Cells. PLOS Pathogens (2022) *Corresponding author

Shwetha S, Sarnow P. Cross-species microRNA transmission modulates flavivirus growth in mosquitoes. Trends in Parasitology(2022)


Pradhan A, Shwetha S, Dey S, Goel A, Aggarwal R, Das S.  Exosome associated microRNA-375 induces cell proliferation by regulating IGFBP4 upon Hepatitis C Virus infection. Molecular Microbiology (2022)

Shwetha S, Sarnow P. The tale of two flaviviruses: subversion of host pathways by RNA shapes in dengue and hepatitis C viral RNA genomes. Current Opinion in Microbiology (2021)


Shwetha S*, Sharma G*, Raheja H, Goel A, Aggarwal R, Das S. Interaction of miR-125b-5p with Human antigen R mRNA: mechanism of controlling HCV replication. Virus Research (2018). *Co-first authors


Mukherjee K, Ghoshal B, Ghosh S, Chakrabarty Y, Shwetha S, Das S, Bhattacharyya SN. Reversible HuR-microRNA binding controls extracellular export of miR-122 and augments stress response. EMBO Reports (2016).


Shwetha S, Kumar A, Mullick R, Vasudevan D, Mukherjee N, Das S. HuR displaces PTB to facilitate La binding to the 3’UTR and enhances HCV replication. Journal of Virology (2015).


Bhat P, Shwetha S, Sharma DK, Joseph AP, Srinivasan N, Das S. The beta hairpin structure within ribosomal protein S5 mediates interplay between domains II and IV and regulates HCV IRES function. Nucleic Acids Research (2015).


Gouthamchandra K, Kumar A, Shwetha S, Mukherjee A, Chandra M, Ravishankar B, Khaja MN, Sadhukhan PC, Das S. Serum proteomics of hepatitis C virus infection reveals retinol-binding protein 4 as a novel regulator. Journal of General Virology (2014).


Shwetha S, Gouthamchandra K, Chandra M, Ravishankar B, Khaja MN, Das S. Circulating miRNA profile in HCV infected serum: novel insight into pathogenesis. Scientific Reports (2013).



Shwetha S*, Xiao W, Carette JC, Sarnow P*. The RNA-binding protein PACT is required for Dengue virus infection of the human host. *Corresponding author


Shwetha S*, Flynn RA, Shah P, Sarnow P*. ChIRP-MS discovery of mosquito proteins interacting with Dengue viral RNA.  *Corresponding author



Ahmed A, Saha B, Patwardhan A, Shwetha S, Nandi D. The Major Players in Adaptive Immunity- Humoral Immunity. Resonance - Journal of Science Education (May 2009)


Ahmed A, Saha B, Patwardhan A, Shwetha S, Nandi D. The Major Players in Adaptive Immunity- Adaptive Immunity Resonance - Journal of Science Education (June 2009)


Google scholar link



2023: DST-SERB Ramanujan fellowship

2017-18: School of Medicine Dean's Postdoctoral Fellowship, Stanford University

2015: Best poster award and oral presentation in the 4th Molecular Virology Meeting at the Rajiv Gandhi Centre for Biotechnology, India.

2010-2015: Graduate student research fellowship awarded by the Government of India for PhD training at the Indian Institute of Science (All India Rank 3).

2010: Gold medal awarded for obtaining the highest GPA in the Masters in Biotechnology Program by the MS University of Baroda, India.

2005-2010: Kishore Vaigyanik Protsahan Yojna scholarship awarded for research in the Basic Sciences by the Department of Science and Technology, Government of India.


Invited oral presentations:

"Dengue RNA-protein interactions that modulate infection in mosquito host", American Society of Virology Annual Meeting, 2021.


"Dengue RNA-protein interactions that modulate infection in mosquito and human hosts", BayViro 2019, University of California, Berkeley, 2019.


 “HuR orchestrates interplay between viral and host proteins at the 3’UTR to regulate HCV replication” 4th Molecular Virology Meeting, Rajiv Gandhi Centre for Biotechnology, Thiruvananthapuram, 2015. 



Virus handling (BSL2/3), Insect and animal cell culture, clincal sample handling, Advanced molecular biology techniques including CRISPR editing, RNA tagging, RNA affinity purification, library preparation and sequencing, Peptide identification by mass spectrometry (sample preparation and analysis 


2019: Lab Mentor, SSRP-Amgen Scholars Program

-       Designed and submitted a research proposal for the SSRP mentorship program 

-       Mentored an undergraduate student to successfully complete the proposed project and present their work at the SSRP symposium.

-       Title: Investigating the regulatory roles of Dicer in Dengue Viral Replication

2019-2021: Journal Club mentor, ADVANCE Summer Institute, Stanford Biosciences


2019-2021: Participated in the Stanford Teaching Certificate Program including a 12-week intensive course in Science and Engineering Course Design

2012:Teaching assistant: Essentials in Microbiology- Theory and laboratory courses


-       Reviewed more than 20 articles in Virology, Antiviral Research, Journal of Virology, MBio, Cell Reports  and Plos Pathogens

-       Member of the RNA Society (2021-Present)