Sunflowers in the market, Krakow

Postdoc

Prateek

Brief

Who am I?

I grew up in a small town called Shivpuri in India and did an integrated BS-MS degree in Physics from IISER-Kolkata. IISER offered me opportunity to take various interdisciplinary subjects during the course work. I became especially interested in the subject of evolutionary dynamics taken by Dr. Supratim Sengupta. I was intrigued by the application of various mathematical techniques for understanding complex social and biological phenomenon happening all around us and how same mathematical principles may be employed for understanding evolution at different scales. In my PhD (at IISER-Kolkata), I analysed an evolutionary game theoretical model of harassment bribery as well as bacterial competition of antibiotic producer, sensitive and degrader cells in a spatial environment. Both of these research topics have been motivated by current societal issues. In my free time, I love to read, program, sketch and meditate.

Research interests

My research currently focuses on understanding synthetic gene drive systems. Synthetic gene drive is a genetic engineering technology which biases the chance of inheritance of the desired gene in a population. Hence drive genes can increase in frequency even when they have fitness disadvantage. This technology has numerous potential advantages (human health, agriculture and threatened species conservation) but also comes with great risks and challenges (confinement, societal impact, ecological and health impact). The focus of my work is to assess the risks of synthetic gene-drive systems in terms of spread and resistance evolution using mathematical modelling and simulations.

Span

  • Evolutionary Game Theory
  • Network Science
  • Complex Systems
  • Origin of Life
  • Computational Social Science

Publications

Kosakowski J, Verma P, Sengupta S, Higgs PG (2018) The evolution of antibiotic production rate in a spatial model of bacterial competition. PLoS One 13(10):e0205202.

Verma P, Nandi AK, Sengupta S (2018) Bribery games on interdependent complex networks. J Theor Biol 450:43ñ52.

Verma P, Nandi AK, Sengupta S (2017) Bribery games on inter-dependent regular networks. Sci Rep 7:42735.

Verma P, Sengupta S (2015) Bribe and punishment: An evolutionary game-theoretic analysis of bribery. PLoS One 10(7):e0133441.

Conferences, workshops and talks

2019

  • DPS Department Day talk, titled Cooperation and Conflict in Microbial Community at IISER Kolkata on 23 February 2019.

2016

Visited Prof. Paul G. Higgs at McMaster University, Canada in Nov-Dec 2016 to work on a joint project which resulted in a paper titled Evolution of antibiotic production rate in a spatial model of bacterial competition.

  • Ecology and Evolutionary Biology (EEB) seminar talk at McMaster University on 7th December 2016.

2015

  • Attended Santa Fe Institute’s 2015 Complex Systems Winter School India conducted from December 7 through December 21, 2015 at the Indian Institute of Science Education Reseach (IISER) in Mohali, India

2014

  • Poster presentation on the Department day at IISER-Kolkata in November, 2014.