Manikuntala Kundu

Manikuntala Kundu
Senior Professor

Previous appointments:

University of Liege, Belgium, 1994

Research interests:

Cellular and molecular microbiology with special reference to the pathogens, Mycobacterium tuberculosis and Helicobacter pylori


Address: Department of Chemistry
Main Campus
Bose Institute
93/1, A. P. C. Road
Kolkata - 700 009, India
E-Mail: mani[at]
Phone: +91-33-23031153


Mycobacterium tuberculosis signaling networks and gene regulation

Overcoming persistent mycobacteria surviving in tuberculous lung lesions in the face of  hypoxia and nutritional deprivation poses a challenge in tuberculosis control. It is essential to understand how Mtb signals and responds to stress. Appropriate stress-responsive mechanisms contribute to the fitness of the organism enabling it to survive under hostile conditions.

The two component systems (TCSs) of mycobacteria

We are engaged in understanding the role of the two-component system MtrAB in mycobacterial physiology. MtrA is an essential response regulator in Mtb. However, comprehensive knowledge is lacking on its targets in the Mtb genome. We have carried out genome-wide chromatin immunoprecipation followed by next generation sequencing, to map MtrA binding sites across the Mtb genome. These results are being analyzed in detail in an effort to understand the role of MtrA in myocbacterial biology.

Targeting multiple response regulators of the OmpR family by exploiting a conserved motif in their DNA-binding domain

With continued focus on the TCss, we hypothesized that TCSs of the OmpR family could possibly be targeted simultaneously by targeting a set of conserved amino acid residues (LRXK) in their DNA-binding loop. Detailed biochemical and genetic  studies have now established that a conserved LRXK motif in the DNA binding loop of at least three members of the OmpR family, namely MtrA, RegX3 and MprA, is required for DNA binding function of these proteins.

Helicobacter pylori-host interactions

Helicobacter pylori  colonizes gastric epithelial cells. The bacterium can cause disease ranging from peptic ulcer to  gastric mucosa-associated lymphoid tissue (MALT) lymphoma. The gastric epithelium undergoes constant remodeling with homeostasis being maintained by a balance between cell proliferation and apoptosis. It is thus important to understand the nature of H. pylori-infected gastric epithelial cell remodeling. Apoptosis (death) of the gastric epithelial cells and inflammation are hallmarks of H. pylori infection. We are focused on understanding the secreted factors of H. pylori and the mechanisms involved in regulating apoptosis or proliferation of the gastric epithelium and the release of tissue destructive matric metalloproteinases. We have overexpressed and purified a secretory antigen of H. pylori, HP0175. Its role in the pathogenesis of H. pylori pathogenesis has been the focus of our investigations over the last several years. We are also analyzing miRNA-mRNA networks in H. pylori infection.  




Banerjee, SK., Kumar, M, Alokam, R., Sharma, A.K., Chatterjee, A., Kumar, R., Sahu, S.K., Jana, K., Singh, R., Yogeeswari, P., Sriram, D., Basu, J., Kundu, M.(2016) Targeting multiple response regulators of Mycobacterium tuberculosis augments the host immune response to infection. Scientific Reports 6, Article number: 25851 , doi:10.1038/srep25851


 Kumar, R., Sahu, S.K., Kumar, M., Jana, K., Gupta, P., Gupta, U.D., Kundu, M.,  and Basu J. (2016) MicroRNA 17-5p regulates autophagy in Mycobacterium tuberculosis-infected macrophages by targeting Mcl-1 and STAT3. Cell Microbiol. 18, 679–691.


 Kumar, M., Sahu, S.K., Kumar, R., Subuddhi, A., Maji, R.K., Jana, K., Gupta, P., Raffetseder, J., Lerm, M., Ghosh, Z., van Loo, G., Beyaert, G., Gupta, U.D., Kundu, M., and Basu, J. (2015) MicroRNA let-7- modulates  the immune response to Mycobacterium tuberculosis infection via control of A20, an inhibitor of the NF-kappa B pathway. Cell Host and Microbe 17, 345-356.




Halder, P., Kumar, R., Jana, K., Chakraborty, S., Ghosh, Z., Kundu, M., and Basu, J. (2015)Gene expression profiling of Mycobacterium tuberculosis Lipoarabinomannan-treated macrophages: A role of the Bcl-2 family member A1 in inhibition of apoptosis in mycobacteria-infected macrophages. IUBMB Life 67, 726-736.


Gupta, S., Banerjee, S.K., Chatterjee, A., Sharma, A.K., Kundu, M., and  Basu, J. (2015) Eessential protein SepF of mycobacteria interacts with FtsZ and MurG to regulate cell growth and division. Microbiology, 161, 1627-1638.


Sharma, A.K., Chatterjee, A., Gupta, S., Banerjee, R., Mandal, S., Mukhopadhyay, J., Basu, J., and  Kundu, M. (2015) MtrA, an essential response regulator of the MtrAB two component system regulates the transcription of resuscitation promoting factor B (RpfB) of Mycobacterium tuberculosis. Microbiology,  161, 1271-1281.


Halder, P., Datta, C., Kumar, R., Sharma, A.K., Basu, J., and Kundu, M. (2015) The secreted antigen, HP0175, of Helicobacter pylori links the unfolded protein response (UPR) to autophagy in gastric epithelial cells.  Cell Microbiol. 17, 714-729


Kumar, M., Sahu, S.K., Kumar, R., Subuddhi, A., Maji, R.K., Jana, K., Gupta, P., Raffetseder, J., Lerm, M., Ghosh, Z., van Loo, G., Beyaert, G., Gupta, U.D., Kundu, M., and Basu, J. (2015) MicroRNA let-7- modulates  the immune response to Mycobacterium tuberculosis infection via control of A20, an inhibitor of the NF-kappa B pathway. Cell Host and Microbe, 17, 1-12.


Amedei, A., Munari, F., Della Bella, C., Niccolai, E., Benagiano, M., Bencini, L., Cianchi, F., Farsi, M., Emmi, G., Zanotti, G., de Bernard, M., Kundu, M., and D'Elios, M. M. Helicobacter pylori secreted peptidyl prolyl cis,trans-isomerase drives Th17 inflammation in gastric adenocarcinoma. (2014) Internal and Emergency Medicine 9, 303-309


Sanyal, S., Banerjee, S.K., Banerjee, R., Mukhopadhyay, J., Kundu M.(2013)Polyphosphate kinase 1, a central node in the stress response network of Mycobacterium tuberculosis, connects the two-component systems MprAB and SenX3-RegX3 and the extracytoplasmic function sigma factor, sigma E.  Microbiology. 159, 2074-2086


Amedei, A., Munari, F., Della Bella, C., Niccolai, E., Benagiano, M., Bencini, L., Cianchi, F., Silvestri, E., D’Elios, S., Farsi, M., Prisco, D., Zanotti, G., de Bernard, M., Kundu, M., and D’Elios, M. M. Helicobacter pylori HP0175 promotes the production of IL-23, IL-6, IL-1β and TGF-β. (2013) Eur. J. Immunol. 11, 261-268.


Kumar, R., Halder, P., Sahu, S. K., Kumar, M., Kumari, M., Jana, K., Ghosh, Z., Sharma, P., Kundu, M., and Basu, J. Identification of a novel role of ESAT-6-dependent miR-155 induction during infection of macrophages with Mycobacterium tuberculosis. (2012) Cell Microbiol. 14, 1620-1631


Ghosh, S., Sureka, K., Ghosh, B., Bose, I., Basu, J., and Kundu, M. Phenotypic heterogeneity in mycobacterial stringent response. (2011)  BMC Systems Biology, 5: 18


Natarajan, K., Kundu, M., Sharma, P., and Basu J. Innate immune responses to M. tuberculosis infection. (2011)  Tuberculosis  91, 427-431


Dasgupta, A., Sureka, K., Mitra, D.,  Saha, B., Sanyal, S.,  Das,  A. K., Chakrabarti, P., Jackson, M., Gicquel, B., Kundu, M., and Basu, J.  (2010) An oligopeptide tansporter of Mycobacterium tuberculosis regulates cytokine release and apoptosis of infected macrophages. PLoS ONE  5 , e12225


Sureka, K., Hossain, T., Mukherjee, P., Chatterjee, P., Datta, P., Kundu, M., Basu, J. (2010) Novel role of phosphorylation-dependent interaction between FtsZ and FipA in mycobacterial cell division.PLoS One. 5, e8590.


Barik, S., Sureka, K., Basu, J., and Kundu, M. RseA, the SigE specific anti-sigma factor of Mycobacterium tuberculosis, is inactivated by phosphorylation-dependent ClpC1P2 proteolysis. (2009) Mol. Microbiol. 75,  592-606


Sureka, K., Sanyal, S., Basu, J. and Kundu, M. Polyphosphate kinse 2: a modulator of nucleoside diphosphate kinase activity in mycobacteria. (2009) Mol. Microbiol. 74, 1187-1197


Kundu, M., Pathak, S.K., Kumawat, K., Basu, S., Chatterjee, G., Pathak, S.,  Noguchi, T.,  Takeda, K.,  Ichijo, H., Thien,  C.B.F.,. Langdon, W.Y. and  and Basu, J. A tumor necrosis factor- and c-Cbl-dependent FLIPS degradation pathway and its role in Mycobacterium tuberculosis-induced macrophage apoptosis   (2009) Nature Immunol. 10, 918-925

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  • Fellow of the Indian Academy of Sciences, Bangalore, 2014
  • Stree Shakti Science Samman, 2006
  • Fellow of the West Bengal Academy of Science and Technology, 2003



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