Indian Institution of Science Education and Research, India
Siddharth Shivanandan strongly credits his teachers with providing opportunities to explore and experiment outside of the classroom, allowing his natural curiosity to thrive.
At the Indian Institution of Science Education and Research (IISER), Thiruvananthapuram (TVM) in Kerala, India, Shivanandan pursued a major in biological sciences and a minor in data science. For his first research project, he dove into the vast field of centromere biology where he identified and characterized a novel kinetochore ortholog of NNF1 in the small flowering plant, Arabidopsis. This work explored how this protein participates in vegetative development and was published in The Plant Journal. His later training led him to explore the molecular mechanisms of this novel kinetochore protein with collaborators at the Institut Curie in Paris.
For his minor in data science, Shivanandan established and validated a method to quantify the Golgi dispersal in mammalian cells by utilizing mitochondrial network analysis software and modifying it for quantifying Golgi distribution in cells.
Also, while a student at IISER, Shivanandan founded Proteus, the Biology Club of IISER TVM. Proteus aims to create a thriving community of biologists by engaging students with scientific speakers, activities, and dialogue. While leading the club, Shivanandan realized just how enthusiastic he is about sharing his work with and teaching the next generations of scientists.
For Shivanandan, pursuing research in academia will provide him with what he sees as the perfect opportunity to combine his two passions - experimentation and teaching.