IISER Pune Professor, Dr. Rajesh S. Gokhale has been appointed as Secretary, Department of Biotechnology by the central government.
“The Appointment Committee of the Cabinet has approved the appointment of the Dr Rajesh S Gokhale, Professor, Department of Biology, IISER for a period of two years or till attaining the age of 60 years with effect from the date of assumption of charge of the post or until further orders, whichever is the earliest”, read the order.
Professor Dr. Rajesh Sudhir Gokhale was born in 1967 and is an Indian chemical biologist. He obtained his PhD from IISc and Postdoctoral studies from Stanford University, USA.
He had joined National Institute of immunology after conducting his postdoctoral training at Stanford University, He became Indian the director of Institute of Genomics and Integrative Biology. Gokhale is known for his studies on the metabolic diversity of pathogens.
He is also credited with the discovery of a family of Long-chain Fatty acyl-AMP ligases (FAAL) and his studies assisted in the elucidation of biochemical crosstalk between fatty acid synthases and polyketide synthases in Mycobacterium tuberculosis.
He holds US and Indian patents for his invention of Method to Modulate Pigmentation Process in the Melanocytes of Skin. An alumnus of the Indian Institute of Science, he is an elected fellow of the Indian Academy of Sciences (2007)and the Indian National Science Academy (2014).
The Council of Scientific and Industrial Research, the apex agency of the Government of India for scientific research, awarded him the Shanti Swarup Bhatnagar Prize for Science and Technology, one of the highest Indian science awards, in 2006, for his contributions to biological sciences.
He received the National Bioscience Award for Career Development of the Department of Biotechnology in 2009
After he moved back to India, he joined National Institute of Immunology (NII), Delhi as faculty. From 2009 to 2016, he was Director of CSIR-Institute of Genomics and Integrative Biology (CSIR-IGIB), Delhi.