I am Ravichandra, a Ph.D. student in Dr. Tom Claydon's lab, BPK department. I am originally from India and I started my Ph.D. at SFU in fall 2018. I developed an interest in science from my childhood and pursued a bachelor’s and a master’s degree in life science. After completing my master's, I worked as a research associate in a drug discovery and development company, in India. To continue my journey in science I decided to do a Ph.D. and moved to Dr. Tom Claydon’s lab. Here I am working on one of the cardiac ion channels and trying to understand its role in cardiac rhythm disorders to develop better treatment for patients with cardiac rhythm problems.
My Ph.D. work is to understand and explore the use of small molecule activators for the treatment of long QT syndrome patients. Patients with prolonged QT interval on the cardiac electrocardiogram are at risk of developing cardiac arrhythmias, and linked to these disorders are dysfunction of ion channels proteins in cardiac muscle cells. My project is focused on one of these ion channel proteins, which is important for the movement of potassium ions in cardiac cells. I am using various electrophysiological, human induced pluripotent stem cells derived cardiomyocytes ((hiPSC-CM) and zebrafish heart models to test small molecule activators' effect on these ion channels. This project will help in developing more targeted and effective treatments for LQTS patients.
Any advice you would give to starting graduates?
‘’Follow your passion’’
What’s your favorite movie of all time?
Which do you prefer – dogs or cats?
If you could visit one place in the world, where would it be?
This post was originally posted to the SFU BPK Instagram on June 1, 2021.