Rinku Majumder, PhD
In 1999, Dr. Rinku Majumder received her Doctorate in Biochemistry from the Bose Institute in India. Subsequently, from 1999-2003 she performed postdoctoral studies in the Department of Biochemistry & Biophysics at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. In 2003, Dr. Majumder was promoted to the position of Research Assistant Professor, and in 2010 she was further promoted to Research Associate Professor at the University of North Carolina. In 2015, Dr. Majumder was appointed Associate Professor in the Department of Biochemistry & Molecular Biology at LSUHSC in New Orleans. Dr. Majumder currently serves as a permanent member of the American Heart Association Study Section Review Committee for basic thrombosis research and she serves on the National Institutes of Health VA merit award study section.
From the beginning of her postdoctoral studies, Dr. Majumder has investigated numerous questions regarding the regulation of blood clotting and diseases arising from deficiencies in the presence of various clotting factors and in regulation of their activities. Notably, Dr. Majumder was a key contributor to work that overturned the prevailing paradigm regarding the role of platelet membranes in regulating thrombin generation. Previously, it was accepted that the membrane itself triggers prothrombin activation to thrombin. Dr. Majumder and co-workers demonstrated that soluble phosphatidylserine mimics recapitulated all of the properties of the membrane, thus proving that phosphatidylserine, and not the membrane surface, regulates thrombin formation. The technology employed in these studies is now patented, and it has spawned a biotechnology company that is developing soluble phospholipid mimics for use in clinical coagulation assays.
More recently, Dr. Majumder’s research has focused on development of new, more effective therapeutics for thrombotic diseases and hemophilia. Her group was the first to discover a previously unknown function for Protein S, an anticoagulant that, despite 30 years of research by others, remained poorly characterized. Dr. Majumder’s group discovered that Protein S inhibits activated Factor IX, which, in turn, inhibits thrombin formation. This newly recognized function of Protein S is the basis for creating new hemostasis therapies, as described under current research.