Alagarsamy Srinivasan, Ph.D.

Assistant Director, CPDR Basic Science Research Program

Dr. Srinivasan has been an Assistant Director at CPDR, Department of Surgery, USUHS and Chief of Molecular Diagnostics and Cancer Vaccine Program since 2012. He has a distinguished background in several areas of basic research including Cancer Biology, Viral Oncology, Molecular Biology and Molecular Virology and Diagnostics, as well as in Research Administration. He received his Ph.D in Radiation Biology and Genetics in 1977 from Jawaharlal Nehru University, New Delhi, India. He carried out a postdoctoral fellowship at NCI under Drs. PremKumar Reddy and Stuart Aaronson. He later moved to Atlanta to carry out research on HIV at the CDC. His academic associations as a faculty in the past 30 years include Emory University, Atlanta, GA; The Wistar Institute/University of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia, PA; Thomas Jefferson University, Philadelphia, PA.  He has mentored several graduate students and postdoctoral fellows at these universities. In 1979 Dr. Srinivasan was successful in cloning and characterizing abl oncogene from Abelson Murine Leukemia Virus. The work on viral abl was instrumental in elucidating the genetic organization of cellular abl gene which also led to the detection of bcr-abl in CML disease. His research activities over the years span several areas:  genetic and functional characterization of oncogenes, transforming retroviruses, HIV, SIV, HTLV and Human herpesvirus 8. He has published extensively and obtained funds from NIH for the research program. He has served on the NIH AIDS- related Study Sections, NCRR and ad-hoc Study Sections and editorial boards of scientific journals.

Dr. Srinivasan’s research currently focuses on identification and validation of biomarkers for prostate cancer (CaP) and understanding the molecular mechanisms involved in the transformation of normal cells into cancer. A major goal is to define protein and antibody markers which may facilitate early detection, distinguish aggressive disease, define treatment strategies and allow follow up of patients. Diagnosis of CaP is routinely carried out by digital rectal examination (DRE) and quantitation of prostate specific antigen in the blood/sera. The limited specificity of PSA assay calls for investigations regarding additional biomarkers for CaP with sufficient sensitivity and specificity. To meet these needs, Dr. Srinivasan’s research objectives are: i) To identify autoantibody based signatures in serum for the early detection of prostate cancer based on the simple concept that aberrant expression of proteins in cancer may lead to the development of autoantibodies; ii) To identify autoantibody based signatures in serum for determining prostate cancer aggressiveness; iii) Development of single chain variable fragment (ScFv) based therapeutics against ERG target; iv) Exploration of magnetic nanoparticles as a vehicle for prostate cancer therapeutics; v) Nanoparticle based approaches for detecting protein-protein interactions in cells.