Ashok KumawatTitle: Associate Senior Lecturer School/office: School of Medical Sciences
Phone: +46 19 302185
About Ashok Kumawat
Ashok Kumar Kumawat is an associate senior lecturer in biomedicine with specialisation in immunology at the School of Medical Sciences, Örebro University, Sweden. His academic and research areas of interest are in immunology and inflammation.
Dr Ashok obtained his BSc degree in Chemistry, Botany and Zoology majors in 2002 from Rajasthan University, Jaipur, India. Then he pursued his Master’s degree in Microbiology in 2004 from Bangalore University, Bangalore, India. He had worked for 3 years in the life science industry and then he started his research career as “Research Scholar” in 2007 at Örebro University, Sweden.
Dr Ashok defended his PhD thesis entitled “Adaptive immune responses in microscopic colitis” conducted in Professor Elisabeth Hultgren Hörnqvist’s group at the School of Medical Sciences, Örebro University, in the year 2013. His PhD thesis was first to describe a detailed descriptive mapping of local adaptive immune responses in the intestinal mucosa of microscopic colitis (MC) patients, that were (and are still) incomplete, but necessary to understand the pathophysiology in MC.
In 2014, Olle Engqvist byggmästare foundation awarded a two-year postdoc fellowship to Dr Ashok to carry out postdoc work in Professor Allan Mowat’s lab at the University of Glasgow. During this time, he focused on characterising the role of αvβ5 integrin on intestinal macrophages function in mice. His work revealed for the first time that intestinal macrophages express high levels of integrin αvβ5 and it is induced as monocytes differentiate into a mature intestinal macrophage population. Integrin αvβ5 also promotes phagocytosis and activates tissue remodelling pathways in the intestinal macrophages that are important in the maintenance of local homeostasis.
In 2016, he joined as senior postdoc fellow in Professor Allan Sirsjö’s group at the School of Medical Sciences, Örebro University and today he works as an associate senior lecturer in biomedicine with specialisation in immunology. He affiliates with the research environment Cardiovascular Research Centre (CVRC).
His research mainly focuses on elucidating the immune responses in inflammation, particularly in the vascular system and in the intestine. He has been working on to block IL17A cytokine using small protein modules termed Affibody to suppress inflammation in experimental model of atherosclerosis and in ex vivo system using human tissues.
He has established his independent line of research focusing on elucidating the role of gut microbial derived dietary metabolite trimethylamine N-oxide (TMAO) in the pathogenesis of atherosclerosis in vascular inflammation. He is investigating how does TMAO modulates vascular cells and immune cells function in humans.
He is exploring interactions between gut microbiota and trimethylamine N-oxide and immune responses, how these responses contribute to pathogenesis in peripheral arterial disease, which is largely unknown in this patient group. Recently he has received HÖG19 grant from the Knowledge foundation (KKS) to develop this project.
His research work also focuses on to evaluate the role of intestinal macrophages in fibrosis in patients with inflammatory bowel disease (IBD).
Dr Ashok serves as an experienced problem-based learning (PBL) tutor and project supervisor for the Örebro University’s medical program. He has also been teaching advanced immunology laboratory techniques in the medical program.
He is also involved in teaching advanced immunology and laboratory techniques in the international Master’s program Experimental medicine. He also supervises students for their Master’s thesis projects and Bachelor thesis projects in Biomedical analyst program.
He is also a seminar leader for the PhD course “General scientific methods in medical sciences”. He is co-supervising one PhD student.