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.
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.
Pathak, S., Verma, P., Ram, S. K. & Sengupta, S. (2020) How strategy environment and wealth shape altruistic behaviour: cooperation rules affecting wealth distribution in dynamic networks. Proc Royal Soc B, 287, 20202250
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.
Cooperation and Conflict in Microbial Communityat IISER Kolkata on 23 February 2019.
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.