Amit Singh

Associate Professor; Director of Graduate Program in Biology; Member of the Center for Tissue Regeneration and Engineering at Dayton
Full-Time Faculty
College of Arts and Sciences: Biology

Profile

Dr. Singh received his B.Sc. from the Government Degree College Nahan, H.P. University, India and his M.Sc. and Ph.D from Devi Ahilya University, Indore, India. After a short stint as a Research Associate in the field of Trangenics of silkworm, Bombyx mori, in Indian Institute of Sciences (IISc.), Bangalore, India, Dr. Singh moved to Academic Sinica Taiwan to pursue post doctoral research in the field of eye development using Drosophila melanogaster model system. In 2002, Dr. Singh moved to Baylor College of Medicine, Houston, Texas to further pursue his work on Drosophila eye development and was promoted to an instructor (non-tenure track faculty) position in 2004. Dr. Singh was hired at University of Dayton as tenure track assistant professor in 2007 and promoted to associate professor in 2013. To date, he has published one book and 41 papers.

Faculty Perspective

I have developed a great admiration for the concept of experiential learning as I strongly believe that hands-on approach is best tool of learning. This approach is applicable both in the classroom as well as the laboratory setup, and therefore justifies my passion for research and teaching. My long term goal is to develop an excellent research program in Drosophila genetics of patterning and growth to model human diseases at University of Dayton.

Degrees

  • B.Sc. (Biology), Degree College Nahan, Himachal Pradesh University, Shimla, H.P.
  • M.Sc. (Life Sciences), D. A. University, Indore, India
  • Ph.D (Drosophila Genetics), D. A. University, Indore, India

Professional Activities

  • Member of Genetics Society of America (GSA), Ohio Miami Valley Society of Neuroscience (OMVSfN), Council of undergraduate Research (CUR).
  • Honorary member of Theta Kappa Chapter of University of Dayton’s Beta Beta Beta, Honor Society.
  • Member of mentor network of American Society of Human Genetics (ASHG) GENA, project.
  • Faculty Advisor, Indian Student Association, University of Dayton.
  • Academic Editor, Journal PLoS ONE.
  • Editorial Board Member of Developmental Dynamics, Journal of Biological sciences, Journal of Cell Science & Therapy, Current research in Neuroscience

Research Interests

Drosophila eye model to study axial patterning, cell survival & birth defects.

The fruit fly, Drosophila melanogaster, eye serves as an excellent model to study cell type specification during development. Drosophila eye has been extensively used to address diverse biological processes like patterning cell proliferation, cell death, cell survival, polarity and genetic basis of human diseases.  The compound eye of an adult fly develops from the primordium called eye imaginal disc harbored inside larva, which initiates from a group of 20- cells as early as an embryo.

Axial Patterning: Dorso-ventral patterning in Drosophila eye.

Axial patterning is hallmark of organogenesis which results in transition of a single sheet of cells into a 3-dimensional organ. Our lab is interested in understanding the molecular genetic basis of the Dorso-ventral patterning, the first lineage restriction event of early eye primordium. DV patterning thus plays a crucial role in inducing growth and patterning of early eye disc. The dorsal and ventral domains of the eye are generated by the domain specific expression and function of the dorsal selector genes and the ventral growth controlling genes. Our lab will focus on identifying new components of DV patterning and their role in retinal determination of the eye. Our laboratory seek to provide a better understanding of the molecular, genetic, and environmental basis of normal eye development, as well as elucidate the genes and molecules that when altered result in the genesis of birth defects in eye.

Drosophila eye model of Alzheimer’s Disease.

Alzheimer’s disease (AD), a common progressive neurodegenerative disorder in the aging population, has no early detection tests or proper cure. AD manifests as a gradual decline of cognitive functions of learning and memory due to selective atrophy of specific cell populations in central and peripheral nervous system. One of the causes of cytotoxicity seen in AD is generation and accumulation of amyloid-beta plaques in the brain. Even though produced in the body amyloid-ß42 (Aß42) is toxic and triggers neurodegeneration. The molecular genetic mechanisms that trigger progressive neurodegeneration due to Aß42 accumulation are not completely understood.

Several animal models have been developed to understand the molecular genetic, chemical basis of this disease. We are using a Drosophila eye model to understand the genetic circuitry involved in amyloid-beta 42 mediated neurodegeneration seen in Alzheimer’s disease.  Our long term goal to screen for (a) potential genetic mutations which contribute to/or trigger AD mediated neuropathology and may serve as biomarkers for early detection of AD and (b) potential drug targets which might either block the cellular process that leads to the accumulation of amyloid-plaques or which may prevent the oligomerization of Aß42 accumulation in the Drosophila eye.

Selected Publications

Singh, A. and Kango-Singh, M. (2013). Molecular Genetics of Axial Patterning, Growth and Disease in the Drosophila eye. Amit Singh (Editor) and Madhuri Kango-Singh (Editor), Springer, Publication Date: September 30, 2013 | ISBN-10: 1461482313 | ISBN-13: 978-1461482314 | Edition: 2013

Tare, M., Roy, O. R., Singh, A. “Molecular genetic mechanisms of axial patterning: Mechanistic insights into generation of axes in the developing eye.”  A. Singh, M. Kango-Singh (eds.), Molecular Genetics of Axial Patterning, Growth and Disease in Drosophila Eye, DOI 10.1007/978-1-4614-8232-1_9, © Springer Science+Business Media New York 2013.

Moran, M.T., Tare, M., Kango-Singh, M.,* Singh A.* (2013). "Homeotic gene teashirt (tsh) has a neuroprotective function in amyloid-beta 42 mediated neurodegeneration." PLoS ONE [* Corresponding Author]

Steffensemeir, A., Tare, M., Puli, O. R., Modi, R.M.,  Nainaparampil, J., Kango-Singh*, M., Singh A.* (2013).  "Novel neuroprotective function of apical-basal polarity gene crumbs in amyloid beta 42 (Aβ42) mediated neurodegeneration." PLoS ONE [* Corresponding Author]

Tare, M., Puli, O. R., Moran, M. T., Kango-Singh, M., Singh A. (2013). "Domain specific genetic mosaic system in the Drosophila eye." Genesis. 2013 Jan; 51(1):68-74. doi: 10.1002/dvg.22355. Epub 2012 Nov 26. (PMID: 23109378)

Singh, A.  (2012). "Neurodegeneration a means to an end. Journal of Cell Science and Therapy" (Editorial). J. Cell Sci. Therapy 3:e107. Doi:10.4172/2157-7013.1000e107.  http://www.omicsonline.org/2157-7013/2157-7013-3-e107.php?aid=6170.

Singh, A.* and Irvine K.D. (2012). "Drosophila as a model for understanding development and disease." Developmental Dynamics. 241(1):1-2. (Editorial). PMID: 22174082 *Amit Singh is the guest editor for this special issue.

Singh, A.,* Tare, M., Puli, O.R., Kango-Singh, M.* (2012). "A glimpse into Dorso-ventral patterning of the Drosophila eye." Developmental Dynamics. 241(1):69-84. (Review). PMID: 22034010 [*Corresponding Author]   *Amit Singh is the guest editor for this special issue.

Singh, A.,* Tare, M., Kango-Singh, M., Son, W.-S., Cho, K.-O. Choi, K.-W.* (2011). "Opposing interactions between homothorax and Lobe defines the ventral eye margin of Drosophila eye." Developmental Biology. 15; 359(2): 199-208. PMID: 21920354 [* Corresponding Author]

Tare, M., Modi, R.,* Nainaparampil, J.,* Puli, O. R., Bedi, S., Fernandez-Funez, P., Kango-Singh, M.* and Singh, A.* (2011). "Activation of JNK signaling mediates Amyloid-β-dependent cell death." PLoS ONE 6  (9) e24361, 1-12 PMID: 21949710 [* Corresponding Author]  #: All three are equal first authors

Usman, M., Singh, A.* (2011). "A New Undergraduate Curriculum in Mathematical Biology at the University of Dayton." Journal of STEM Education. 12(5 & 6): 9-17 July - Sept. 2011.  [* Corresponding Author]

Oros, S.M., Tare, M., Kango-Singh, M. and Singh, A.* (2010). "Dorsal eye selector pannier (pnr) suppresses the eye fate to define dorsal margin of the Drosophila eye." Developmental Biology 2010 Oct 15; 346(2):258-71. Epub 2010 Aug 5. PMID: 20691679.  [* Corresponding Author].

Kango-Singh, M. and Singh, A.* (2009). "Regulation of Organ Size: Insights from the Drosophila Hippo signaling pathway." Developmental Dynamics 238(7):1627-37.b. [* Co- Corresponding Author]

Lim, J. Lee, O.K. Hsu, Y.-C, Singh, A. and Choi, K.-W. (2007b) "Drosophila TRAP230/240 are essential coactivators for Atonal in retinal neurogenesis." Developmental Biology  308(2): 322-330

Singh, A.,* Kango-Singh, M., Parthasarathy, R. and Gopinathan, K.P.  (2007a). "Larval legs of mulberry silkworm Bombyx mori are prototypes for the adult legs." Genesis 45 (4): 169-176 [*Corresponding Author]

Singh, A.,* Xiao, S. and Choi, K.-W. (2006a). "Lobe and Serrate, are required for cell survival during early eye development in Drosophila." Development 133, 4771-4781  [* Co-Corresponding Author]

Singh, A., Chan, J., Chern, J.J. and Choi, K.-W. (2005a). "Genetic interaction of Lobe with its modifiers in dorsoventral patterning and growth of the Drosophila eye." Genetics. 171(1):169-83. Epub 2005 Jun 23. PMID: 15976174

Singh, A., Kango-Singh, M., Choi, K.-W. and Sun, Y.H. (2004). "Dorso-ventral asymmetric functions of teashirt in Drosophila eye development depend on spatial cues provided by early DV patterning genes." Mechanisms of Development 121: 365-370. PMID: 15110046

Kango-Singh, M., Singh, A. and Sun, Y.H.  (2003). "Eyeless collaborates with Hedgehog and Decapentaplegic signaling in Drosophila eye induction." Developmental Biology 256 (1):49-60.  PMID: 12654291

Singh, A., Choi, K.-W. (2003). "Initial state of Drosophila eye before dorso-ventral specification is equivalent to ventral." Development 130: 6351-6360. PMID: 14623824

Singh, A., Kango-Singh, M. and Sun, Y.H. (2002). "Eye suppression, a novel function of teashirt, requires Wingless signaling." Development 129(18): 4271-80. PMID: 12183379

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