Summary of qualifications
- Experienced researcher with a demonstrated history of working in the academic and research industry.
- Skilled in various techniques pertaining to honey bee nutrition and biology, neuroethology, molecular ecology, pesticide research, insect toxicology, insect physiology, pollination biology and entomology.
- Strong research professional with numerous publications in scientific journals, environmental magazines and book chapters.
- Have demonstrated history of grant funding and have been the recipient of numerous prestigious awards.
- Adept at working in interdisciplinary research problems and in a multicultural environment.
Research Associate (Post Doc) – Honey bee lab, Oregon State University, Corvallis, Oregon
November 2016 – Present
Principal investigator: Dr. Ramesh Sagili
Research: Assessing the importance of key nutrients for honey bee health; studying the impacts of pesticides on nurse bees across different cropping systems.
Postdoctoral Fellow – Department of Zoology and Centre for Pollination Studies, University of Calcutta, Kolkata, India
May 2016 – October 2016
Principal Investigators: Prof. Parthiba Basu (Ecology Research Unit) and Prof. Sagartirtha Sarkar (Molecular Cardiology)
Research: Studying the impacts of pesticides on vision in the wild native Indian honey bees. The expressions of apoptotic proteins in native bees exposed to pesticides as a part of a larger lab project have also been studied.
Newton Bhaba PhD Placement Fellow – Institute of Neuroscience, Newcastle University, UK
September 2015 – December 2015
Advisor: Prof. Geraldine Wright
Research: Studying the gustatory responses of bumble bees to neonicotinoids. Special training undertaken on several insect neuroethological techniques.
Ph.D. (Zoology) – Department of Zoology, University of Calcutta, Kolkata, India
January 2011 – April 2016
DST-INSPIRE PhD Fellow, funded by Dept. of Science & Technology, Govt. of India, for 5 years
Advisor: Prof. Parthiba Basu (Ecology Research Unit) and Prof. Sagartirtha Sarkar (Molecular Cardiology)
Thesis: Phenotypic traits and genetic heterogeneity in natural honey bee populations along an agricultural intensification gradient in Eastern India.
Research and responsibilities: I studied the pesticide induced impairments on wild native Indian honey bees across agricultural intensification areas. I studied the effects on honey bee physiology, behavior, brain responses and also honey bee diversity. I standardized protocols for rearing honey bees in cages for laboratory trials at the Ecology Research Unit, University of Calcutta and also for biochemical assays in honey bees. I helped my supervisor to establish the Centre for Pollination Studies, University of Calcutta (funded by Darwin Initiative, DEFRA, UK). I organized and participated in various farmers’ training and awareness programs across three Eastern Indian states as part of the Darwin Initiative team, coordinated the honey bee projects, managed lab finances, documented project expenditures, organized meetings and conferences for the lab. I implemented pilot studies on wild native honey bees and helped expanding the bee lab by participating in grant writing in University of Calcutta. I also collaborated with various eminent scientists across India and across disciplines for successful completion of my experiments
Research Intern – Department of Zoology, University of Calcutta, Kolkata, India
August 2010 – December 2010
Master of Science in Zoology – Department of Zoology, University of Calcutta, Kolkata, India
First Class First (Gold medalist)
Bachelor of Science in Zoology (Honours) – Asutosh College, University of Calcutta, Kolkata, India
First Class Third
Personal skills and competences
- Molecular ecological techniques: Enzyme assays, Western blot, DNA extraction, isozyme studies on
native PAGE, RAPD – PCR, cryosectioning, confocal microscopy, laser capture microdissection.
- Neuroethological techniques: Honey bee brain dissection, performing taste assays, PER for honey bees, Y-maze for bee vision experiments, basics in sample preparation and tip recording electrophysiology, honey bee antennal sample preparation for scanning electron microscopy, video recording behavior and analyzing video data.
- Software: GraphPad Prism, Statistica, Noldus, ImageJ and R. Competent in MS Office. Basic knowledge of Windows OS (7, 8, 10) and Photoshop.
- Interdisciplinary skills and collaboration: I am currently collaborating with Dept. of Integrative Biology, Dept. of Veterinary Sciences and Dept. of Chemistry at Oregon State University for successful completion of current laboratory projects. During my PhD I worked at the Ecology Research Unit and I successfully collaborated with the Molecular Cardiology Laboratory, University of Calcutta, Game and Wildlife Conservation Trust UK, Institute of Neuroscience Newcastle University UK, Department of Chemistry, Agharkar Research Institute India and IISER (Trivandrum) India.
Professional trainings undertaken
- Oregon State University e-learning course on R statistical software, 2017
- Honey bee artificial insemination training at the Ecology & Evolution Unit, Okinawa Institute of Science and Technology Graduate University, Okinawa, Japan, 2016
- Training in neuroethological techniques (which included learning Noldus software, sample preparation and basics in tip recording electrophysiology and performing taste assays on bumble bees) at the Institute of Neuroscience, Newcastle University, UK, 2015
- Training in honey bee behavior and honey bee rearing in laboratory cages at the Indian Institutes of Science Education and Research (IISER), Trivandrum India, 2012
- Research paper
- Smith, B.M., Chakrabarti, P., Chatterjee, A., Chatterjee, S., Dey, U.K., Dicks, L.V., Giri, B., Laha, S., Majhi, R.K. and Basu, P. (2017) Collating and validating indigenous and local knowledge to apply multiple knowledge systems to an environmental challenge: A case-study of pollinators in India. Biological Conservation 211(A), 20 – 28.
- Chakrabarti, P., Rana, S., Bandopadhyay, S., Naik, D.G., Sarkar, S. and Basu, P. (2015) Field populations of native Indian honey bees from pesticide intensive agricultural landscape show signs of impaired olfaction. Scientific Reports 5, 12504. DOI: 10.1038/srep12504.
- Chakrabarti, P., Rana, S., Smith, B., Sarkar, S. and Basu, P. (2015) Pesticide induced oxidative stress in laboratory and field populations of native honey bees along intensive agricultural landscapes in two Eastern Indian states. Apidologie 46(1), 107 – 129.
- Book chapter
- Basu, P., Bhattacharya, R. and Chakrabarti, P. (2017) Pollination crises in the agro-ecosystems of the tropics: challenges and way forward. In G. Poyyamoli (Ed) Agroecology, ecosystems and sustainability in the tropics. Studera Press, New Delhi.
- Basu, P. and Chakrabarti, P. (2015) Sub lethal effects of pesticides on pollinators with special focus on honey bees. In P.A. Sinu and K.R. Shivanna (Eds) Mutualistic interaction between flowering plants and animals. Manipal University Press, Manipal. ISBN: 978-93-82460-26-8. Link: http://mup.manipal.edu/
- Basu, P. and Chakrabarti, P. (2015) Pesticides and the Muted Buzz of the Bees. In Biswas, S., Mitra, M.K. and Bar, R. (Eds) Environmental impacts on health: towards a better future. Kolkata Readers Service, Kolkata. ISBN: 9789382623511.
III. Scientific articles – single authorship
- Article entitled “Food security in agriculture” in Food Safety, May 2016 http://bsedkolkata.org.in/emagazine/food-safety/27-food-security-in-agriculture
- Article entitled “The vanishing honey bees” in www.livelystories.com – an online magazine http://livelystories.com/2014/06/24/vanishing-honey-bees/.
- Article entitled “Story of the vanishing pollinators – honey bees” in SujalamSufalam, Issue number 2, April – June, 2013.
- Article entitled “The invisible world” in Sujalam Sufalam, edition Wildlife Conservation. Issue number 3, October – December, 2013.
- Under preparation / revision:
- Priyadarshini Chakrabarti, Sagartirtha Sarkar, Parthiba Basu. Field populations of native Indian honey bees show increased diversity under pesticide stress.
- Priyadarshini Chakrabarti, Sagartirtha Sarkar, Parthiba Basu. Visual impairments in native Indian honey bees exposed to pesticides.
Conference / Meeting / Workshop
- Conference / Meetings
- Presented two posters at the “6th Annual Post Doc Research Symposium and Vendor Show” organized by OSU Post Doctoral Association, Oregon State University, USA on October 4th, 2017.
- Participated at the American Bee Research Conference by American Association of Professional Apiculturists, Galveston, Texas, USA in January 2017.
- Presented a platform talk at the honey bee workshop organised by the Okinawa Institute of Science & Technology, Japan in April, 2016.
- Presented a platform talk at the first meeting of the UK – India Initiative in Agroecology by the British Ecological Society and Society for Agroecology, India on 21stFebruary, 2015 at the University of Calcutta.
- Presented a poster at the Joint 2014 Annual Meeting British Ecological Society and Société Française d’Ecologie from 9 – 12 December at Grand Palais, Lille, France.
- Presented a platform talk at “Pollinators in Agriculture” conference organized by Association of Applied Biologists at Brussels, Belgium from 01-03 April, 2014.
- Presented a speed talk at INTECOL, 2013 held at London, UK, 18th – 23rd August 2013.
- Presented a poster at Young Ecologists Talk and Interact (YETI), 5th – 7th October, 2010 at IISc Bangalore, India.
- Workshop organization
- Helped organize and participated in 3-day workshop “Scientific writing in agroecology” organized by the Indo-Norwegian Cooperation Programme 2014 (INCP) from March 2nd – 4th, 2016.
- Helped organize and participated in 3-day workshop “Action learning in agroecology” organized by the Indo-Norwegian Cooperation Programme 2014 (INCP) from February 24th – 26th, 2015.
- Helped organize and participated in the first meeting of the UK – India Initiative in Agroecology by the British Ecological Society and Society for Agroecology, India from February 21st – 23rd, 2015 at the University of Calcutta.
III. Workshop participation
- Participated in the honey bee workshop and the honey bee artificial insemination workshop organized by the Okinawa Institute of Science & Technology, Japan from April 6th – 12th, 2016.
- Participated in 3-day workshop on Application of Statistics in Life Sciences, held on September 25th – 27th, 2013 organized by Zoological Society, Kolkata and Dept. of Zoology, University of Calcutta in collaboration with Indian Association for Productivity, Quality and Reliability.
- Participated in 4-day India – UK scientific seminar held at Trivandrum, Kerala on Biology of Tropical Pollination : From Individuals to Networks organized by DST, India and Royal Society, UK from February 19th – 22nd, 2013.
- Presented a talk entitled “Impacts of stressors on pollinator health, behavior and nutrition” at the 2017 Fall Seminar Series, Department of Horticulture, Oregon State University, USA on September 26th, 2017.
- Participated in Zoology Colloquium – 2016 hosted by the Department of Zoology, University of Calcutta from September 15th – 16th, 2016.
- Participated in and hosted the National Level Young Scientists’ Meet 2016 : Hiralal Chaudhuri Commemorative Conference organised by the Zoological Society Kolkata and Department of Zoology, University of Calcutta from February 4th – 6th, 2016.
- Participated in University Grants Commission’s 1-day seminar on “Advanced Seminar on Research Updates: 2015” organized by Department of Zoology, University of Calcutta, on March 31st, 2015 at Kolkata, India.
- Presented a paper at (and successfully awarded) Sudev Bhushan Ghosh Young Scientist Award held on February 28th, 2014.
- Participated at the seminar on Research Updates, 2014 organized by and held at Dept. Of Zoology, University of Calcutta on March 29th, 2014.
- Participated in 1-day seminar on Ecological Modeling & Analyses held at Dept. of Zoology, University of Calcutta on March 1st, 2014.
- Participated in Spring Talks @ CU Zoology 2013, on March 23rd, 2013 organized by and held at Dept. of Zoology, University of Calcutta
- Participated in 100th Indian Science Congress, held at University of Calcutta from January 3rd – 7th, 2013.
Teaching and advising
Certificate course currently undertaken
Tuesday Teaching Talks organized by the Oregon State University Center for Teaching and Learning
Taught module 4 (Threats to pollinators) at the 6 months certificate course on pollination biology at the Centre for Pollination Studies, University of Calcutta. Along with teaching the module, my responsibilities were to define and develop the lectures and courses for module 4, guide the students in understanding the various threats to pollinators and encourage them in understanding the problems. I also evaluated their course examination answer scripts. I spent 5 hours every week for 6 months.
Supervised one student intern at the Ecology Research Unit, University of Calcutta. I guided and trained the student in bee behavior and helped develop field skills. I also helped the student to develop ecotoxicological experimental skills. I guided the student into achieving great results in the experiments. The student published with us and is now pursuing PhD in a related field in University of Tennessee (Knoxville). Hours spent 25 hours every week for one year.
- 2013 – 2015
Trained three M.Sc. (Zoology) Ecology special paper students each year in honey bee biology and behavior at the Ecology Research Unit, Department of Zoology, University of Calcutta. My responsibilities were to encourage students in understanding the uniqueness of the honey bee model system, develop their skills in insect physiology and behavior, guide them through the experiments and most importantly develop their troubleshooting skills. Four of the five students are pursuing their PhD in related fields now. Hours spent 12 hours every week for 2 years.
- August, 2010 – July, 2012
Guest lecturer in Zoology (Hons.), Asutosh College, University of Calcutta, 92 Shyamaprasad Mukherjee Road, Kolkata 700026, India. My responsibilities were to develop animal behavior course, deliver lectures on subjects pertaining to animal behavior, ecology, developmental biology and ecotoxicology. I communicated with the students and helped solve their problems. I also evaluated the examination answer scripts. Classes taught for 8 hours every week for 2 years.
- Contributed to writing all sections of the grant entitled “The bumblebee’s mechanisms for the detection and avoidance of pesticides in food” submitted to the Royal Society Newton International Post Doctoral Fellowship. The proposal was successfully funded in November 2016 (grant reference number NF160336) for a total value of £64,000.
- Contributed to writing the successfully awarded grant “Phenotypic traits and genetic heterogeneity in natural honey bee populations along an agricultural intensification gradient in Eastern India” number 37(1616)/13/EMRII dated 10/07/2013. I conducted the pilot studies and helped writing the grant proposal. The Council for Scientific and Industrial Research, Govt. of India, successfully funded the proposal for a total value of INR 20,00,000 (~$32,000).
- Complete funding for attending workshop and presenting a talk at the Ecology & Evolution Unit, OIST, Okinawa, Japan, 2016 (included visa fees, airfares, daily allowance etc.)
- Association of Applied Biologists special travel grant to present a platform talk at the “Pollinators in Agriculture” conference organized by Association of Applied Biologists at Brussels, Belgium from 01-03 April, 2014. £1000
- Parkyn – Bursary special focal student award from the British Ecological Society (BES) to attend and present a talk at INTECOL, 2013 at London, UK. £750
- University of Calcutta two travel grants (2013 and 2014) of INR 50,000 and INR 75,000
Fellowships, awards and distinction
- Royal Society Newton International Post Doctoral Fellowship November, 2016 (Having already started working at Oregon State University, I declined this). This is a highly competitive and prestigious fellowship. Only 40 researchers are awarded all across the world every year. £64,000
- Newton – Bhaba PhD Placement Fellowship for pursuing research at the Newcastle University, UK at the insect neuroethology laboratory from September to December, 2015. Complete funding for 3 months which included airfare, visa, travel costs, fellowship, University bench fees, consumables etc. Only 20 Indians are awarded each year, starting from 2015.
- The focal student researcher appreciation at the INTECOL, 2013 meeting in London, UK by the British Ecological Society.
- Sudev Bhushan Ghosh Young Scientist Award by Zoological Society, Kolkata, 2012-2013.
- Awarded the prestigious DST-INSPIRE Fellowship for pursuing PhD, March 2011, by Department of Science & Technology (DST), Government of India. I was funded completely for 5 years (fellowship and contingency). This is a highly competitive fellowship, awarded to only a few selected gold medalists across all the Indian universities.
- First Class First – Gold medalist – University of Calcutta, Master of Science (Zoology), 2010. Secured the highest marks in the M.Sc. Zoology examination at the University of Calcutta.
- C. Ghose Memorial Medal awarded by the Zoological Society, Kolkata, 2010.
- First Class Third – University of Calcutta, Bachelor of Science, Zoology (Hons.), 2008. Secured the third highest marks in the B.Sc. (Hons.) Zoology examination, University of Calcutta.
- Distinction Award for scoring the highest in the Zoology Department, Asutosh College, 2008 in the Zoology Honours examination, University of Calcutta.
Service to profession
- Reviewer for international peer reviewed journals
- Member of search committee thrice for recruitment at the Department of Horticulture, Oregon State University
Outreach and Extension
- 2013 – 2015: Helped organize and participated in various farmer awareness programs, beekeeper trainings and farmer training programs across various Eastern states in India. This project comprised of a large team and was funded by the Darwin Initiative Grant, DEFRA, Govt. of UK and was coordinated by Prof. Parthiba Basu and Dr. Barbara Smith (University of Calcutta, India and Game & Wildlife Conservation Trust, UK collaboration).
- 2012: Interaction at day long seminars with school children to spread environmental and pollinator awareness.
- International Union for the Study of Social Insects American section
- American Association of Applied Apiculturists
- British Ecological Society
- Association of Applied Biologists
- Zoological Society of Kolkata
- Indian Science Congress
References will be provided upon request.