The ubiquitylation and deubiquitylation of key molecules involved in the regulation of a cell's response to DNA damage has become an important area of research for therapy of cancers. We focus on ubiquitylation / deubiquitylation pathways related to the DNA replication apparatus and in the dysregulation of DNA damage response induced by viral oncoproteins.

Short and long noncoding RNAs are turning out to be very important for various facets of biology. We study them in the context of how they regulate differentiation of skeletal muscle and the progression of prostate cancer.

With the revolution of genomic sequencing, questions relating to where origins of replication are located, what genes are important for cancer progression or for prediction of responsiveness to chemotherapy, and whether there are new forms of nucleic acid molecules in the cell or in our body fluids have become easier to access. We take a leading role in these areas of exploration.
About Dr. Dutta

His research interests cover genomic instability in cancer cells and noncoding RNAs in differentiation and cancer. His laboratory identified many of the replication initiation proteins in human cells, used genomics technology to identify hundreds of origins of replication in human chromosomes, discovered a major mechanism by which human cells prevent over-replication of their DNA, and identified a novel class of circular DNA present in normal mammalian cells. His laboratory has also discovered microRNAs that promote differentiation and microRNAs, tRFs and long noncoding RNAs that regulate cancer progression. He has trained nearly fifty scientists who continue research in academia or industry, and has received the following honors: Elected Fellow of the AAAS and of the AAP, Ranbaxy Award for studies on genome instability and the Outstanding Investigator Award of the American Society for Investigative Pathology.
Publications from lab in Google Scholar.


Latest News
Aug 2023: Rishi K. Devulapalli joins Dutta Lab as PhD candidate. Welcome Rishi!

Jul 2023: Dr. Zhangli Su starts her independent laboratory as a tenure-track Asst. Prof. in the Dept. of Genetics, UAB. Congratulations! Her lab website can be found

May 2023: Our paper “XRN2 suppresses aberrant entry of tRNA trailers into argonaute in humans and Arabidopsis” is now published in
PLOS Genetics. Congratulations to Briana and co-authors.

April 2023: Dr. Dutta elected to the Association of American Physicians (

April 2023: Dr. Kiran Kumar Reddi joins Dutta Lab as Postdoc. Welcome Kiran!

March 2023: The lab welcomes Haley and Samira to join as rotation student.

Dec 2022: Congratulations to Dr. Briana Wilson for successfully defending her Ph.D. thesis and returning to medical school for the MD part of her MD, PhD.

Dec 2022: The lab welcomes alumnus Roza and her family to visit UAB and celebrate lab holiday party with us : ))

Sep 2022: Rishi and Afsane successfully presented their poster at the UAB Medical Student Research Day. Zhangli, Divya and Kendall presented their research at the UAB Postdoc Symposium.

Sep 2022: The lab celebrates Labor Day together (thanks to Xiaoxiao and Yuechuan for hosting)! The lab welcomes Xinyue and Javeed as rotation students, and Jayden from UAB Honors College (working with Zhangli).

Aug 2022: Congratulations to Xiaoxiao for winning the Best Poster Award at the UAB GBS symposium!

Aug 2022: The lab welcomes Afsane to join as a PhD candidate and Kendall Walton from UAB-HudsonAlpha Medical Genomics Postdoc Training Program.

July 2022: Our eccDNA circle-finder protocol was highlighted as the 22 methods most used by Bio-protocol's community last year. Please read about it on bio protocol

June 2022: Congratulations to Zhangli for winning RNA Society Poster Award at the 27th Annual Meeting of the RNA Society in Boulder, CO!!!

June 2022: We present a new web tool that uses machine learning for predicting target sites of tRNA-derived fragments -
tRForest. This work was co-led by Rohan and Bri, and is now published in NAR Genome Bioinformatics.

May 2022: "TRMT6/61A-dependent base methylation of tRNA-derived fragments regulates gene-silencing activity and the unfolded protein response in bladder cancer" is now published in
Nature Communications and is highlighted by UAB News and Featured Discovery. Congratulations to Zhangli and co-authors!

April 2022: Want to know more about Function and Therapeutic Implications of tRNA Derived Small RNAs? Check out Bri's
review article!

April 2022: Interested to identify germline variants correlated with cancer? Please read the
STAR Protocol written by Divya and co-authors!

March 2022: The lab welcomes Stephen Hurst to join as a PhD candidate, Shruti Kapoor and Sarmad Mehmood to join as Postdoc. Looking forward to great discoveries along your way!

Jan 2022: The structure-function analysis on promyogenic lncRNA MUNC is published in
Cell Reports and is highlighted by UAB News. This work was led by Roza and done in collaboration with Kevin Weeks' lab at UNC.

Dec 2021: The analysis on gene expression changes induced by E6-USP46 is now published in
Cancers. This work was co-led by Shashi, Bri and Shekhar.

Nov 2021: Shekhar's paper on lncRNA DRAIC regulating protein translation and autophagy is now published in
JCS. You can also read the JCS interview with the first author Shekhar here to know more about his perspectives. Congratulations to all the authors!

Nov 2021: Teressa's paper about how eccDNAs are regulated by different DNA repair pathways is now published in
NAR. Well done everyone!

Aug 2021: Xiaoxiao Hao joins the lab as a PhD student. We also welcome Emily Page as a rotation student. Enjoy your time in the lab! We are still recruiting at all levels.

June 2021: The Dutta Lab will move to The University of Alabama at Birmingham Department of Genetics at the end of June. Please keep in touch! The lab is recruiting new members at all levels. Please check out the
Contact page.

June 2021: Roza passed her PhD thesis defense titled Essentiality and Functional Importance of Short and Long Non-coding RNAs in Myogenesis with flying colors! She was also selected for the 2021 BMG Outstanding Student Award. Congratulations Dr. Przanowska! We wish you all the best in the new lab.

May 2021: Zhangli wrote her first Perspective for Science on tRNA regulation in stressed T cells. Please read our Perspective
here and the Research Article from Bruce Beutler's group here.

May 2021: Interested in eccDNA? We wrote a protocol about ATAC-Seq-based Identification of Extrachromosomal Circular DNA in Mammalian Cells and Its Validation Using Inverse PCR and FISH. Please read about it on bio protocol

March 2021: Ajay's PhD work on Germline variants predictive of tumor mutational burden and immune checkpoint inhibitor efficacy is now published in iScience. Please read about it
here. Congrats!

Jan 2021: Kyung Yong's article titled Chk1 promotes non-homologous end joining in G1 through direct phosphorylation of ASF1A is now available from Cell Reports. Please read about it
here. Congrats!

Dec 2020: Ajay's review article on germline variants is now available from Trends in Genetics. Please read about it
here. Congrats!

Dec 2020: Dr. Divya Sahu joins Dutta Lab as a postdoc. Welcome Divya!

Sep 2020: Etsuko's work on ORC5 and ORC2 is now published in JBC. Please read about it

Aug 2020: Zhangli, Bri and Pankaj's review article about non-canonical functions of tRNAs is now available from Annual Review in Genetics. You can read about it
here. Congratulations!

August 2020: Dr. Kyung Yong Lee has received an offer to become an independent investigator doing research on Genomic instability in cancers at the National Cancer Center, Seoul. Congratulations, Kyung Yong!

July 2020: Congratulations to lab alumnus Dr. Adam Mueller on becoming an Instructor of Radiation Oncology at Thomas Jefferson University.

June 2020: Teressa Paulsen successfully defended her Ph.D. thesis "The function and production of extrachromosomal circles of DNA". Way to go, Teressa!

May 2020: Pankaj's work about identifying eccDNA from ATAC-seq data is now published in Science Advances. You can read about it here. Congratulations!

April 2020: Roza's work about microRNAs (miR-1 and miR-206) function in muscle cells is now published in FASEB journal. You can read about it here. Congratulations!

March 2020: Ajay successfully defends his Ph.D. thesis titled "Germline Variation Affects Tumor Progression and May Inform Clinical Therapy Decisions Across All Types of Cancers" via Zoom. Ajay has been selected as the 2020 BMG Outstanding Graduate Student! Congratulations Dr. Chatrath!

Feb 2020: Ajay's work about prognostic germline variants across cancers is now publised in Genome Medicine. You can read it here. It has been covered by UVA today. Congratulations!

Jan 2020: Zhangli's work in collaboration with the Lukens Lab (UVA Neuroscience) about tRFs in Maternal Immune Activation model of autism is now publised in RNA Biology. You can read it here. Congratulations!

Jan 2020: Congratulations to Dr. Shekhar Saha on publishing his Cancer Research paper titled Long noncoding RNA DRAIC inhibits prostate cancer progression by interacting with IKK to inhibit NF-kB activation.

Nov 2019: The eccDNA/microDNA work in the lab was covered in the New York Times with quotes from Dr. Dutta. Click here to read about it.

Oct 2019: Congratulations to Dr. Zhangli Su on publishing her JBC paper titled Angiogenin generates specific stress-induced tRNA halves and is not involved in tRF-3-mediated gene silencing.

June 2019: Congratulations to Teressa Paulsen on publishing her paper reporting the expression of short regulatory RNAs from microDNAs (small extrachromosomal circles of DNA present in normal cells) in Nucleic Acids Research. Click here to read about it.

June 2019: Congratulations to Ajay Chatrath on publishing his paper on germline variants in gliomas predicting the outcome of patients in Molecular Cancer Research. Click here to read about it. Ajay will give a talk on this topic at the Gordon Research Conference on Translational Cancer Genomics in July.

May 2019: Congratulations to Dr. Shashi Kiran on winning a postdoc award from the UVA Cancer Center to further his work on how the E6 oncoprotein of human papilomavirus uses the deubiquitinase USP46 to promote cancer cell proliferation. Click here to read about this work previously published in Mol Cell.

April 2019: Congratulations to Roza Przanowska for getting the 3rd place award at 3 Minute Thesis competition at UVA. You can see her here.

March 2019: Congratulations to Roza Przanowska for two Best Poster Awards for her poster on the role of microRNAs in skeletal muscle differentiation at Biochemistry and Molecular Genetics departmental retreat and UVA's Graduate Biosciences Society Symposium.

Nov 2018: Congratulations to Dr. Zhangli Su, Dr. Anindya Dutta and Dr. John Lukens for receiving the UVA Supporting Transformative Autism Research (STAR) Pilot Award to work on microRNAs in autism.

Oct 2018: Congratulations to Dr. Manjari Kiran for getting her paper accepted in Molecular Neurobiology. Click here to read about it.

Sep 2018: Congratulations to Dr. Shashi Kiran, Dr. Dar and Dr. Singh on getting their paper accepted in Molecular Cell. Click here to read about it.

Aug 2018: Dr. Dutta just returned from chairing a Gordon Conference on Genome Stability in Hong Kong.

Aug 2018: Teressa Paulsen gave a very well-received talk at Gordon Conference on Genome Stability in Hong Kong.

July 2018: Dr. Bruno Karia successfully defended Ph.D. thesis. Congratulations!

April 2018: Congratulations to Dr. Ji-Hye Ahn on receiving a Postdoctoral Fellowship from the National Research Foundation of Korea.

April 2018: Congratulations to Dr. Takaaki Tsunematsu on receiving a Postdoctoral Fellowship from the Japan Society for Promotion of Science.

April 2018: Congratulations to Roza Przanowska for receiving a Predoctoral Fellowship from the American Heart Association.