RNA Biology

Structural studies of large protein-nucleic acid complexes and dissecting their functions using in vitro biochemical approaches are my primary research interests. My interests are rooted in my engineering background, leading me to pursue a physical and quantitative understanding of important cellular processes. During my PhD, I used electron cryo-microscopy, nuclear magnetic resonance, cross-linking mass spectrometry, and in vitro biochemistry to unravel the molecular architecture and activity of the eukaryotic mRNA 3′-end processing machinery. Here is a link to my PhD thesis: and a lecture that I gave at Churchill College, Cambridge explaining my research on on mRNA 3′-end processing:

A tale of a messengers tail: Insights into mRNA 3′ end polyadenylation — Ananth Kumar

Currently, I am studying higher order structures in long non-coding RNAs (lncRNAs) and their associated protein complexes using cryo-EM, chemical probing and other biophysical methods. In particular, I am interested in lncRNAs involved in maintaining genome stability.

Healthcare Policy

I am interested in understanding how healthcare deserts are formed, and what can governments do to prevent the formation of healthcare deserts. I am curious to identify regions that have normal health infrastructure and yet fall under the category of healthcare deserts due to indirect effects such as lack of good public transport and inadequate health insurance. In the long run, I would like to provide solutions to improve health care access in such regions in the form of policy memos and reports.

Diversity, Equity and Inclusion

Throughout my career, I have been passionate about making the modern workplace more equitable for members from diverse backgrounds. Towards this, I worked with fellow GATES scholars during my PhD to conduct STEM workshops for girls in primary and secondary school. Currently, I volunteer as a judge for ENVISION by WiSTEM - an international research competition for female and genderqueer high school students interested in STEM.

As a part of my final project for the GCPP Advanced Public Policy course, I have written a policy brief on how to increase women’s labour force participation in India. I propose the creation of a Pan India Children Activity Scheme - a revamped form of the National crèche scheme. Please find the full policy brief in a slide doc format the following link: