V.Krishnan Ramanujan, PhD

Director, Two Photon Imaging Core Facility, Biomedical Sciences

Research Scientist, Surgery

Phone:(310) 423-7666

Academic Appointments

Assistant Professor, Surgery

Awards and Activities

American Cancer Society Research Scholar Award2012
Donna & Jesse Garber Award in Cancer Research2010
Susan G Komen Career Catalyst Award2009
Young Investigator Award for the Best Poster2002
SNS Memorial Young Scientist Award2001
Indian Representative of Nobel Laureates Conferenc2001
Editorial Board Member : Journal of Cell Science & TherapyCurrent

Research Focus

The major focus of our Metabolic Photonics laboratory is to define the fundamental role of mitochondrial dysfunction in breast cancer etiology, progression and metastasis. We utilize a multidisciplinary approach including high-resolution optical imaging techniques, Enzyme kinetic modeling, Molecular biology tools and Structure-based rational design of small molecule regulators. Besides the fundamental research, our clinical translational projects include: (a) development of imaging tools for early detection of breast cancer signatures, (b) development/validation of biomarker panel of candidate mitochondrial proteins for tumor staging and (c) development /implementation of intra-operative tumor margin detection device during surgery.

Research Contributions

Developed the first ever Streak-Camera based Multiphoton Fluorescence Lifetime Imaging Microscopy (MP-StreakFLIM) system for biological applications [currently marketed by Hamamatsu Photonics (Japan)];

First ever identification of mitochondrial scaling behavior and nonlinear dynamics in single cell metabolism with publications in aging and breast cancer models;

Discovery of biomarker signatures of mitochondrial complex I subunit NDUFS3 in invasive breast carcinoma;

Current investigations include:

Targeting Mitochondrial Function in Breast Cancer;
Metabolic Imaging Strategies for Early Detection of Breast Cancer In vivo;
Mitochondrial Biomarkers for Mapping DCIS-Invasive Breast Cancer Transition;
Hormonal Regulation of Mitochondrial Metabolism in Breast Cancer

Selected Publications

  1. Suhane S, Berel D, Ramanujan VK: Biomarker signatures of mitochondrial NDUFS3 in invasive breast carcinoma. Biochem. Biophys. Res. Commun., 412(4): 590-5, 2011
  2. Suhane S, Ramanujan VK: Thyroid hormone differentially modulates Warburg phenotype in breast cancer cells. Biochem. Biophys. Res. Commun., 414(1): 73-8, 2011
  3. Nyirenda N, Farkas DL, Ramanujan VK: Preclinical evaluation of nuclear morphometry and tissue topology for breast carcinoma detection and margin assessment. Breast Cancer Res. Treat., 126(2): 345-54, 2010
  4. Ramanujan VK, Ren S, Park S, Farkas DL: Non-invasive, Contrast-enhanced Spectral Imaging of Breast Cancer Signatures in Preclinical Animal Models In vivo. J Cell Sci Ther, 1(102), 2010
  5. Hwang JY, Wachsmann-Hogiu S, Ramanujan VK, Ljubimova J, Gross Z, Gray HB, Medina-Kauwe LK, Farkas DL: A Multimode Optical Imaging System for Preclinical Applications In Vivo: Technology Development, Multiscale Imaging, and Chemotherapy Assessment. Mol Imaging Biol, , 2011
  6. Shimada K, Crother TR, Karlin J, Dagvadorj J, Chiba N, Chen S, Ramanujan VK, Wolf AJ, Vergnes L, Ojcius DM, Rentsendorj A, Vargas M, Guerrero C, Wang Y, Fitzgerald KA, Underhill DM, Town T, Arditi M: Oxidized Mitochondrial DNA Activates the NLRP3 Inflammasome during Apoptosis. Immunity, 36(3): 401-14, 2012