Meet New Investigator Kishor Bhakat, Ph.D.

January 09, 2015

Image with caption: Kishor Bhakat, Ph.D.

Kishor Bhakat, Ph.D.

This profile is part of a series to highlight the researchers who will be honored Feb. 2 at a ceremony for UNMC's 2014 Scientist Laureate, Research Leadership, Distinguished Scientist and New Investigator Award recipients.

  • Name: Kishor Kumar Bhakat, Ph.D.
  • Title: Associate professor, UNMC Department of Genetics, Cell Biology and Anatomy
  • Joined UNMC: July 2013
  • Hometown: Rampurhat, India

Describe your research briefly in layman's terms.
Lung cancer is the leading cause of cancer-related death worldwide. Although early stage lung cancers are treated surgically and subsequently treated with chemotherapy, many patients show resistance to the drugs and recurrence of tumor development. The major focus of my research is to elucidate the molecular mechanisms of drug resistance of tumor cells. The overall goal of our research is to identify early diagnostic and predictive biomarkers for lung cancer. Furthermore, my research also is aimed at a better understanding of how cancer cells remember and transmit the transcriptional memory to daughter cells for maintaining their sustained proliferation and survival.

How does your research contribute to science and/or health care?
Resistance to multiple drugs is the major cause for failure of cancer chemotherapy. The benefit of chemotherapy is significant only in patients whose tumors do not express some proteins or factors. These factors are called predictive markers, which may influence or predict the outcome of the treatment. Our research will help to predict that patients with low levels of some factors will have significant survival benefits from adjuvant chemotherapy, where as those with high levels will have a less-effective response to chemotherapy.

What is the best piece of advice anyone ever gave you, professional or personal?
One consistent piece of advice I got from both my mother and mentors was, "Go for the excellence. Success will automatically come."

List three things few people know about you.

  • I enjoy watching old Hindi movies.
  • I love travelling.
  • I spend my spare time playing memory games with my daughter.


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Kusum K. Kharbanda
January 09, 2015 at 10:40 AM