National Institute of Plant Genome Research
Digital India   Azadi Ka Amrit Mahotsav     
    Dr. Manoj Majee
    Staff Scientist VI
    PhD: Bose Institute/Jadavpur University, INDIA
    Postdoctoral Fellow: University of Kentucky, Lexington, USA
    Telephone: 91-11-26735193, Fax: 91-11-26741658
 Honors :
Fellow of Indian Academy of Sciences (FASc), Bangalore, India (2022)
Fellow of The National Academy of Sciences , India  (FNASc) (2019)
Fellow of West Bengal Academy of Science & Technology (WAST)  (2019)
Visiting Scientist–at Department of Plant Breeding and Genetics  of  Max Planck Institute for Plant Breeding Research, Cologne, Germany  through INSA  bilateral exchange program  (2014)
 Awards :
S Ramachandran  National Bioscience Award for Career Development , DBT, Govt. of India (2017-18)
INSA (Indian National Science Academy)  Young Scientist  Award (2011)
NASI (The National Academy of Sciences, India) Young Scientist Platinum Jubilee Award (2011)
 Research Area:
Plant Stress and Seed Biology/ Plant Molecular Biology and Biochemistry.
 Group Members:
 Research Interest:
Uncovering the molecular and biochemical mechanisms and intricacies of seed longevity, germination vigor and adaptation to environmental stresses

Seed occupies the crucial position in the life cycle of plants and has acquired several spectacular characteristic features, besides their overwhelming importance of human’s life.  For example, seed can sense external environment and can decide whether to germinate or not. In addition, seed has the unique ability to survive in the dry state for prolonged periods of times.  The lifespan of orthodox seeds can sometimes be astonishingly long from decades to centuries and even millennium (Nelumbo nucifera: nearly 1,300 years; Phoenix dactylifera: >2,000 years). Seeds are resistant to environmental stresses. Studies suggest that seed has evolved with complex systems (protection, detoxification and repair) to achieve the optimized seed life span.  However, the underlying molecular intricacies and mechanisms of maintaining germination vigor and viability of seeds for prolonged periods of time are still obscured.

Research in my laboratory centers around studying molecular intricacies, mechanisms and events that govern seed germination, viability, longevity and seedling emergence.

We employ molecular genetics and biochemical approaches with modern tools and techniques to address our research questions.

Currently, we study how Protein Repairing Enzymes [Protein L ISO-ASPARTYL METHYLTRANSFERASE (PIMT), Methionine Sulfoxide Reductase (MSR)]; 26S Proteasome Pathway [E3 Ligase, F box proteins] and Protective Metabolites [Inositols and RFOs] contribute in achieving high germination vigor, viability and longevity, and also in successful seedling establishment/plant stress adaptation in wide environmental conditions.
Socio-economic application of our research

Seed longevity is a vital trait for the germplasm conservation of endangered and cultivated species. Maintenance of seed vigor and longevity during storage is also one of the important concerns in Agriculture, since under sub tropical climate, seeds of most crop species show rapid deterioration and exhibit reduced seed longevity, which significantly affects country’s agricultural economy. We exploit this knowledge generated to improve seed vigor, seed storage life and seedling performance of crop plants.

 Complete list of Publications & Patents
Publications & Patents  from NIPGR
As a Corresponding Author /PI or First Author
Kamble NU and Majee M (2022) ABI transcription factors and PROTEIN L-ISOASPARTYL METHYLTRANSFERASE module mediates seed desiccation tolerance and longevity in Oryza sativa. Development 149. doi:10.1242/dev.200600
Vishal Varshney and Majee M (2022) Emerging roles of the ubiquitin-proteasome pathway in enhancing crop yield by optimizing seed agronomic traits. Plant Cell Reports
Salvi P, Kumar B, Kamble NU, Hazra A and Majee M (2021) A Conserved NAG motif is critical to the catalytic activity of galactinol synthase, a key regulatory enzyme of RFO biosynthesis Biochemical Journal  478:3939:3955
Vishal Varshney  and Majee M (2021) JA shakes hand with ABA to delay seed germination : Trends in Plant Science26: 8
Kamble NU and Majee M (2020) PROTEIN L ISOASPARTYL METHYLTRANSFERASE in plants: regulations and functions: Biochemical Journal  477: 4453-4471
Ghosh S, Kamble NU, Verma P, Salvi P, Petla BP, Roy S, Roy V, Hazra A, Varshney V Kaur H, and Majee M (2020) Arabidopsis PROTEIN L ISOASPARTYL METHYLTRANSFERASE repairs isoaspartyl damage to antioxidant enzymes and increases heat and oxidative stress tolerance. Journal of Biological Chemistry 295: 783-799
Ghosh S, Kamble NU and Majee M (2020) A protein repairing enzyme PROTEIN L ISOASPARTYL METHYLTRANSFERASE is involved in salinity stress tolerance by increasing efficiency of ROS scavenging enzymes.  Environmental and Experimental Botany 180 :104266
Salvi P, Kamble NU, and Majee M (2020) Ectopic over-expression of ABA-responsive Chickpea galactinol synthase (CaGolS) gene results in improved tolerance to dehydration stress by modulating ROS scavenging. Environmental and Experimental Botany 171 :103957.
Rao V, Petla B P, Verma P, Salvi P, Kamble NU , Ghosh S, Kaur H, Saxena SC and Majee M (2018) Arabidopsis SKP1-like protein 13 (ASK13) positively regulates seed germination and seedling growth under abiotic stresses. Journal of Experimental Botany. 69: 3899-3915.
Majee M,  Kumar S,  Kathare P,  WuS,  Gingerich D,  Nayak N,  Salaita L, Dinkins R, Martin K,  Goodin M ,  Dirk L,  Lloyd T,  Zhu L,  Chappell J,  Hunt A, Vierstra R   Huq E and  Downie AB (2018) A KELCH F-BOX Protein Positively Influences Arabidopsis Seed Germination by Targeting PHYTOCHROME-INTERACTING FACTOR1: Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, USA 115: E4120-E4129.
Salvi P, Kamble NU, and Majee M (2018) Stress Inducible Galactinol Synthase of Chickpea (CaGolS) Implicates in Heat and Oxidative Stress Tolerance through Reducing Stress Induced Excessive Reactive Oxygen Species Accumulation. Plant Cell and Physiology 59: 155–166
Majee M , Wu S, Salaita L, Gingerich D, Dirk L, Chappell J, Hunt AG, Vierstra D, Downie  AB (2017) A misannotated locus positively influencing Arabidopsis seed germination is deconvoluted using multiple methods, including surrogate splicing. Plant Gene 10:74-85
Salvi P, Saxena SC, Petla BP, Kamble NU, Kaur H, Verma P, Rao V, Ghosh S and Majee M (2016) Differentially expressed galactinol synthase(s) in chickpea are implicated in seed vigor and longevity by limiting the age induced ROS accumulation. Scientific Reports 6:35088
Petla BP, Kamble NU, Kumar M, Verma P,  Ghosh S, Singh A, Rao V, Salvi P, Kaur H, Saxena SC and Majee M (2016) Rice PROTEIN L-ISOASPARTYL METHYLTRANSFERASE isoforms differentially accumulate during seed maturation to restrict deleterious isoAsp and ROS accumulation and are implicated in seed vigor and longevity. New Phytologist 211: 627-645.
Kaur H, Petla BP, Kamble NU,Singh A, Rao V, Salvi P, Ghosh S and Majee M (2015) Differentially   expressed seed aging responsive heat shock protein OsHSP18.2 implicates in seed vigor,  longevity and improves germination and seedling establishment under abiotic stress. Frontiers in Plant Science. 6:713.
Saxena SC, Salvi P, Kaur H, Verma P, Petla BP, Rao V, Kamble N  and Majee M (2013) Differentially expressed myo-inositol monophosphatase gene (CaIMP) in chickpea (Cicer arietinum L.) encodes a lithium sensitive phosphatase enzyme with broad substrate specificity and improves seed germination and seedling growth under abiotic stresses Journal of Experimental  Botany 64: 5623-5639.
Verma P, Kaur H,  Petla BP, Rao V, Saxena SC and Majee M (2013) PROTEIN L- ISOASPARTYL METHYLTRANSFERASE2 gene is differentially expressed in chickpea and enhances seed vigor and longevity by reducing abnormal isoaspartyl accumulation predominantly in seed nuclear proteins. Plant Physiology 161:1141-1157.
Kaur H, Verma P,  Petla BP, Rao V, Saxena SC and Majee M (2013) Ectopic expression of the ABA inducible dehydration responsive chickpea L-myo-inositol 1 -phosphate synthase 2 (CaMIPS2) in Arabidopsis enhances tolerance to salinity and dehydration stress. Planta 237: 321-335.
Verma P and Majee M (2013) Seed Germination and Viability Test in Tetrazolium (TZ) Assay. bio-protocol .org (invited)
Verma P, Singh A, Kaur H and Majee M (2010) PROTEIN L- ISOASPARTYL METHYLTRANSFERASE1 (CaPIMT1) from chickpea mitigates oxidative stress induced growth inhibition of Escherichia coli. Planta 231: 329-336.
Kaur H, Shukla RK, Yadav G, Chattopadhyay D. and Majee M ( 2008) Two divergent genes encoding L-myo-inositol 1 -phosphate synthase1 (CaMIPS1)   and 2 (CaMIPS2) are differentially expressed in chickpea. Plant, Cell and Environment 31:1701-1716.
Patent filed
Patent # 370543 (23/DEL/2012) “SEED VIGOR ASSOCIATED POLYNUCLEOTIDE SEQUENCES   FROM CHICKPEA AND USES THEREOF” (Inventor: Manoj Majee & Pooja Verma, NIPGR, New Delhi, India).
Book Chapters
Kaur H, Petla BP and Majee  M  (2016) Small Heat Shock Proteins: Roles in Development, Desiccation Tolerance and Seed Longevity. In Heat Shock Proteins, Alexzander A. A. Asea et al. (Eds): Heat Shock Proteins and Plants, 978-3-319-46339-1, 429871_1_En,
Saxena S C, Kaur H, Verma P, Petla B P, Rao V,  Majee M (2012) Osmoprotectants: Potential for Crop Improvement under Adverse Conditions. In Plant Acclimation to Environmental Stress, ed by Tuteja & Gill. Springer Science + Business Media, LLC 233 Spring Street, New York, NY 10013, USA.
Majee M and Kaur H (2011) L- myo-inositol 1-phosphate synthase (MIPS) in chickpea: gene duplication and functional divergence. In Gene Duplication ed. by Felix Fredburg: Intech (ISBN 978-953-307-387-3).
As a CoPI /Collaborator at NIPGR
Halder K, Chaudhuri A, Abdin MZ, Majee M & Datta A (2022) RNA Interference for Improving Disease Resistance in Plants and Its Relevance in This Clustered Regularly Interspaced Short Palindromic Repeats-Dominated Era in Terms of dsRNA-Based Biopesticides. Front. in Pl. Sci. 13:885128
Halder K, Chaudhuri A, Abdin MZ , Majee M & Datta A (2022) Chromatin-Based Transcriptional Reprogramming in Plants under Abiotic Stresses. Plants 11, 1449
Sarkar Das S, Majee M and Nandi AK & Karmakar P (2020) Sequestering miR165/166 enhances seed germination in Arabidopsis thaliana under normal condition and ABA treatment. Journal of Plant Biochemistry and Biotechnology 29 (4), 838-841
Yadav PK, Salvi P, Kamble N U, Petla BP, Majee M and Saxena SC (2019) Deciphering the structural basis of the broad substrate specificity ofmyo-inositol monophosphatase (IMP) from Cicer arietinum. International Journal of Biological Macromolecules 15;151:967-975
Sarkar Das SS, Yadav S, Singh A, Gautam V, Sarkar AK, Nandi AK, Karmakar P,  Majee  M, and Mishra NS (2017)  Expression dynamics of miRNAs and their targets in seed germination conditions reveals miRNA-ta-siRNA crosstalk as regulator of seed germination. Scientific Reports 8:1233
Negi B, Salvi P, Bhatt D,  Majee M  and Arora S (2017) Molecular cloning, in-silico characterization and functional validation of monodehydroascorbate reductase gene in Eleusine coracana. Plos One 12 (11): e0187793
Meenu, Augustine R, Majee M, Pradhan AK and Bisht NC (2015) Genomic origin, expression differentiation and regulation of multiple genes encoding CYP83A1, a key enzyme for core glucosinolate biosynthesis, from the allotetraploid Brassica junceaPlanta 241(3):651-65.
Barik S, Das SS, Singh A, Gautam V, Kumar P, Majee M and Sarkar AK (2014) Phylogenetic analysis reveals conservation and diversification of miR166 genes among diverse plant species. Genomics 103:114-21
Garg R, Verma M, Agrawal S, Shankar R, Majee M and Jain M (2013) Deep transcriptome sequencing of wild halophyte rice, Porteresia coarctata, provides novel insights into the salinity and submergence tolerance Factors. DNA Research 21;69-84.
Augustine R, Majee M,   Gershenzon J and     Bisht N (2013)  Four genes encoding MYB28, a major transcriptional regulator of aliphatic glucosinolate pathway, are differentially expressed in allopolyploid Brassica juncea. Journal of Experimental  Botany 64:4907-4921.
Bhatt D, Saxena SC, Jain S, Dobriyal A K, Majee M  and Arora S (2013) Cloning, expression and functional validation of drought inducible ascorbate peroxidase (Ec-apx1) from Eleusine coracana. Molecular Biology Reports 40:1155-1165.
Lata C, Bhutty S, Bahadur RP, Majee M and Manoj Prasad (2011) Association of SNP in a novel DREB2-like gene SiDREB2 with stress tolerance in foxtail millet (Setaria italica L.). Journal of Experimental Botany 62: 4731-4748.
Previous Publications & Patents
Shen H, Zhu L, Castillon L, Majee M, Downie B and Huq E. (2008) Light-induced phosphorylation and degradation of the negative regulator PIF1 depends upon its direct physical interactions with photoactivated phytochromes. The Plant Cell: 20:1586-1602.
Salatia L, Kar RK, Majee M and Downie B. (2005) Identification and       characterization of mutants capable of rapid seed germination at 10ºC from activation tagged lines of Arabidopsis thaliana. Journal of Experimental Botany 56:  2059-2069.
Majee M, Patra B , Mundree S and Majumder AL. (2005) Molecular cloning, bacterial expression and characterization of L myo inositol 1 phosphate synthase from a monocotyledonous resurrection plant   Xerophyta Viscosa Baker. Journal of Plant Biochemistry and Biotechnology 14: 95-99.
Majee M, Maitra S, Dastidar KG, Pattanaik S, Chatterjee A, Hait N, Das KP and       Majumder AL. (2004) A  novel salt-tolerant L-myo-inositol 1- phosphate synthase from  Porteresia coarctata Tateoka , a halophytic wild rice: Molecular cloning, bacterial overexpression, characterization  and functional introgression  into tobacco conferring salt-tolerance  phenotype. Journal of Biological Chemistry 279: 28539-28552.
Chatterjee A, Majee M, Ghosh S and Majumder AL.(2004)  sll1722, an unassigned ORF  of Synechocystis PCC 6803, codes for L-myo-Inositol 1-phosphate synthase.  Planta 218: 989-998.
Bhattacharya J, Dastidar KG, Chatterjee A, Majee M, Majumder AL. (2004) Synechocystis Fe superoxide dismutase gene confers oxidative stress tolerance to Escherichia coli. Biochemical and Biophysical Research Communication 316:540-544.
Majumder AL, Chatterjee A, Dastidar KG and Majee M. (2003) Diversification and evolution of L -myo inositol 1- phosphate synthase. FEBS Letters 553: 3-10.
 Book Chapter:
Majumder AL, Hait NC, Deb I, Majee M, Chatterjee A, Dastidar KG, Bhattacharyya S, Ghosh S, Chatterjee A, Maitra S and Pattanaik S (2003) L-myo Inositol 1-Phosphate Synthase: an ancient protein with diverse function. In Molecular Insight in Plant Biology. P. Nath, A.K. Mattoo, S.A. Ranade and J.H. Weil (Editors), Publishers: Oxford & IBH Publishing Co.Pvt. Ltd; New Delhi, India. Chapter 5, pp67- 76.
Patent application # PAT/4.1.4/02019/2003 dated March 17th, 2003. United States Patent 20060148059 Kind Code: A1 "A salt Tolerant L-myo-Inositol 1 Phosphate Synthase and a process of obtaining the same". (Inventors: A. Lahiri Majumder and M. Majee, Bose Institute, Kolkata, India
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