Vikas Ghai

Postdoctoral Fellow

Molecular Biologist

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(206) 732-1444

I am currently involved in characterizing the spectra of extracellular circulating microRNAs (miRNAs) present in biological samples. In particular I’m interested in the species of miRNAs enriched in exosomes and other extracellular vesicles (EVs). The goal of this work is to:
  1. Using advanced next-generation sequencing techniques for profiling small-RNAs to identify various biomarkers for different diseases states and health conditions. My work has been looking at identifying miRNA biomarkers for diabetes, cancer, and neurodegenerative disease.
  2. I am also interested in using proteomic approaches to identify the molecular mechanisms that sort these miRNAs in to EV compartments. This has been done by leveraging our EV small-RNAseq datasets to identify miRNAs that are enriched in EVs, and using biotin-conjugated RNA probes to identify RNA-binding/associated proteins using mass-spectrometry.
Genomics, microRNAs, biomakers, exosomes, extracellular-vesicles, developmental biology, genetics

B.Sc. (Honours) Biology – Molecular Biology and Biotechnology, University of Waterloo

Ph.D. Molecular Biology and Biochemistry – Developmental Genetics, University of Calgary

Relevant Publications (ISB):

Jaros, A., Sroya, HA., Wolfe, VK., Ghai, V., Roumelioti, M., Shaffi, K., Wang, K. Pankratz, VS., Unruh, ML., Argyropoulos, C. (2018) “Study Protocol: Rationale and Design of the Community-based Prospective Cohort Study of Kidney Function and Diabetes in Rural New Mexico. The COMPASS Study.” BMC Nephrology. 19, 47

Ghai, V., Wu, X., Malge, A., Argyropoulos, C., Brendardo, J., Orchard, T., Johnson, J. Galas, D. and Wang, K. (2017) “Genome-wide Profiling of Urinary Exosomal microRNAs Associated with Diabetic Nephropathy in Type 1 Diabetes”. Kidney International Reports (in press, epub) (doi)

Ghai, V. and Wang, K. (2016). “Recent progress toward the use of circulating microRNAs as clinical biomarkers.” Archives of Toxicology 90(12):2959-2978


Otherlder publications:

Shen, Q. Shi, H., Tian, C., Ghai, V. and Liu, J. (2017) The C. elegans Spalt-like protein SEM-4 functions through the SoxC transcription factor SEM-2 to promote a proliferative blast cell fate in the postembryonic mesoderm. Developmental Biology 429(1): 335-342

Ghai, V., Smit RB, and J. Gaudet (2012). “Transcriptional regulation of pharyngeal gland subtype-expressed genes.” Mechanisms of Development 129 (9-12):284-97

Raharjo, W., Ghai, V, Dineen, A, Bastiani, M and Gaudet, J (2011). “Maintenance of gland cell morphology by surrounding musculature in the Caenorhabditis elegans pharynx.” Genetics 189(3):885-97

Ghai, V. and J. Gaudet (2008). “The CSL transcription factor LAG-1 directly represses hlh-6 expression in C. elegans.” Developmental Biology 322(2): 334-44