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Selected For BRICS Young Innovator Award: Project Title: Development of a Fluorescent Peptide based sensor for rapid and specific detection of SARS-CoV-2 in Environment

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Expanding the Genetic Alphabets Expanding the Genetic Codes Just Mix & Read Strategy: Genotyping  (SNPs)-Personalized Medicine


Fluorescent β-Lactam Antibiotics Enediyne Anticancer Antibiotics Chemical/Biological Sensor


Synthetic Methodology COVID-19 INITIATIVE


Nano-Biomaterials and Nano-Photocatalysis




Graphical Abstract


1.   Nucleoside Based Anti SARS-CoV-2 Drug Design, Creation of Drug Library and In Silico Computational Study

Our preliminary Molecular Docking study suggested that the triazole containing bases shows strong interaction and binding effect reflecting their activity to stop the extension of RNA of the viruses. The target nucleosides are believed to have mechanism of action which is similar to Avigan. This work would yield a highly effective COVID-19 drug.


1. A Systematic Review of the Efficacy and Safety of Favipiravir (Avigan) for the Treatment of Novel COVID-19 Infections Bag*, Subhendu Sekhar; Sinha, Sayantan; and Saito, Isao  Medical Research Archives 2020, XX, XX (In Press).


2. Bag*, S. S; Sinha S. S. Uncovering Potent Inhibitory Activity of Our Reported Unnatural Triazolyl Nucleobase Analogues Against SARS-CoV-2 RdRp: An In Silico Study (Communicated).

3.  Bag*, S. S; Sinha S. S.; Saito, I. Proposed Avigan Analoguous Unnatural Triazolyl Nucleosides as Potent Inhibitors of SARS-CoV-2 RdRp: An In Silico Study (Communicated).

5.  Bag*, S. S.;  Sinha S. S. A Systematic Review of the Efficacy and Safety of Remdesivir for the Treatment of Novel COVID-19 Infections (Communicated).

6. ● SARS-CoV-2 from Host Cell Entry, Pathogenicity to Possible Remediation of the Infection Caused: An Overview Bag*, Subhendu Sekhar and Sinha, Sayantan  2020, XX, XX (Communicated).


2.  Design, Synthesis and Therapeutic Application of Novel Peptidomimetic Inhibitor Drugs (PIDs) for COVID-19

We have recently submitted a proposal to CSIR for funding based on "Design, Synthesis and Therapeutic Application of Novel Peptidomimetic Inhibitor Drugs (PIDs) for COVID-19". Our design of peptidomimetic drug inhibitor (PID) against SARS-CoV-2 Mpro main protease is proposed to starts from a knowledge of substrate binding pocket, substrate and mechanism of action of the potent inhibitors N3 and a-ketoamide based peptidic inhibitor. This understanding is a starting point for the development of new SARS-CoV-2 Mpro inhibitors. We propose that the variation of P1/P2 in our design would lead to potent N3-analog and a-keto amide inhibitor, respectively. Initially we want to choose our unnatural triazolyl aliphatic amino acid scaffold (AlTAA) to construct our inhibitor. It is a β-Ala-Gly dipeptide mimic and when present in the backbone of a Leu-Enkephalin analog sequence, it induces β-turn structure, thus acting as β-turn-nucleator.

As the SAR-CoV-2 Mpro specifically cleave the peptide bond following a P1-glutamine residue we decided to use a 5-membered triazolyl ring which can be a mimic of amide side chain of glutamine (which can be called as Gln-Tz). This triazole moiety can enhance the power of the inhibitors possibly due to rigid triazole ring which would lead to a reduction of the loss of entropy upon binding to the target protease.


1.  Bag*, S. S; Sinha S. S. Uncovering Potent Inhibitory Activity of Our Reported Peptidomimetic Designs Against SARS-CoV-2 Mpro : An In Silico Study  (Communicated).


3.        Design and Synthesis of a Smart Fluorescent Biogenic Nanocomposite that Can (a) Stop nCoV-19 to Enter Into the Host Cell, (b) Detect the Virus through Interaction and Photophysical Studies,  and (c) Inhibit the Activity of RNA Dependent RNA Polymerase (RdRp) to Strop Viral Replication


The Proposed concept (A) SARS-CoV-2 binds to the HSPG receptor on the host cell and scans the cell surface to locate its specific hACE2 entry receptor (B) The HSPG mimicking biogenic CQD bind to the S glycoprotein of SARS-CoV-2 and thereby stops infection of host cell. Also the material is expected to bind to the catalytic site of viral RdRp protein and the screened natural RdRp inhibiting molecules coated onto the material surface restricts the activity of RdRp and hence can stop viral replication.


1.  ● Inhibiting the Pathogenicity of SARS-CoV-2 with a Designer Fluorescent Carbon Quantum Dot (FL-ASCQD): A Concept Bag*, Subhendu Sekhar and Sinha, Sayantan 2020, XX, XX (Under Review).  

Binding of (A) wedelolactone (B) luteolin and (C) apigenin in the catalytic site of nCoV-19 RdRp. Interaction of (D) wedelolactone,  (E) luteolin and (F) apigeninwith with amino acids in the active site of the catalytic pocket


4.        Application of the Smart FL-Biogenic Nanocomposite: (a) Anti-SARS-CoV-2 Nano-medicine and (b) Coating for Anti-SARS-CoV-2 Mask


Anti-SARS-CoV-2 Nanomedicine: The material is an antiviral biogenic fluorescent Carbon Quantum Dot (FL-ASCQD), the surface decorated with Angiotensin II which is the primary substrate for human angiotensin-converting enzyme 2 (hACE2) receptors (a receptor that is utilized by nCoV-19 for host cell entry). In addition, the sulfate-decorated surface would act as a mimic of heparan sulfate proteoglycan (HSPG) receptors of the host cell. Therefore,  in the presence of novel coronavirus, the chemically modified nanomedicine would act as a competitive binder of hACE2 receptor. Thus,  it would serve as a decoy to block all possible routes for entry into the cells. So if the virus cannot locate its cellular entry receptor (hACE2), there will be no chance of infection. Additionally, the viral spiked glycoproteins will attach to the HSPG mimics, and hence detection will be possible through photo-physical studies. Finally, the generic antiviral property of the nanomedicine will restrict the RNA dependent RNA polymerase (RdRp) activity and hence stop viral replication.





This idea has been well appreciated and selected amongst the top ideas in the "Undo Corona Ideation Challenge," organized by Government of Assam.




5.     Cheap Solar Photocatalytic Process and Reactor for Rapid, In-situ and at Source Removal of SARS Related Coronavirus, Multi-drug Resistant Bacteria And Antibiotics From Hospital/Community Generated Wastewater











Three Problems-One Solution: Photocatalytic Treatment of Wastewater Containing SARS-CoV-2, Antibiotics and MDR Bacteria



1.  Wastewater an Emerging Source of Spreading COVID-19 Infections in India: A Recent Perspective Bag*, Subhendu Sekhar; and Sinha, Sayantan● Current Science 2020, XX, XX (Under Review).


  6.      Fluorescent Antimicrobial Peptide-based Bacteria/Virus Sensor

Fluorescent Antimicrobial Peptide-based Bacteria/Virus Sensor: We are now engaged  in developing bioinspired materials and antimicrobial peptide based biomaterial for possible clinical use. We are engaged in creating new and novel therapeutic alternatives against the recent rise of multidrug-resistant microbial strains. We have put up a project proposal based on the recent call for Team Science Grant & Clinical/Public Health Research Centres Grants from IndiaAlliance DBT. We want to exploit the β-turn/β-sheet Peptidomimetics developed by Dr. Bag, Peptoids by Prof. Aaron and the Surface tethering techniques by Prof. Lalit at BSBE Department of IITG to create therapeutic surfaces. The bioinspired materials based on fluorescent peptidomimetics developed by me could also find applications in sensing and medical diagnostic purposes. This project would have great impact to resist virus protein capsids, such as SARS-CoV-2 and similar SARS viruses, from surface attachment.



Sl. No.

Project Title

Funding Agency

Duration/ Total Cost

Role PI/




Design, Synthesis and Therapeutic Application of Novel Peptidomimetic Inhibitor Drugs (PIDs) for COVID-19


CSIR, Government of India

3 years,


25.2 Lakhs



Under Evaluation


Synthesis of a Fluorescent Sulphonated Biogenic Carbon Quantum Dot (FLSCQD) Mimicking Heparan Sulphate Proteoglycan Cellular Receptors and Inhibiting the Pathogenicity of SARS-CoV-2 virus

DST-CRG Call on COVID-19, Government of India


1 year;

20.0 Lakhs




Under Evaluation


Mathematical Modelling of Transmittable Disease COVID-19 by Identifying Its Significant Chemical Factors: A Cross-sectional Study of Malaria-Prone State, Tripura

DST-SERB, MATRICS special call on COVID-19

1 year


5.0 Lakhs


[With Dr. Samrat Hore, Dept. of Statistics, Tripura University]

Under Evaluation




Rajadhiraj Yoga, Asana and Meditation for Improving Immunity and to Get Rid of Stress, Anxiety and Depression and Thus to Fight Against Pandemic COVID-19.


DST special call on COVID-19 under SATYAM

1 year


14.0 Lakhs


[With Mr. Bibhansu Maiti, Director, Kevalam Kalyan Kendra, New Delhi]

Under Evaluation


The effects of Yogic meditation on mental health and markers of immunity during COVID-19 lockdown

DST special call on COVID-19 under SATYAM

1 year

12.0 Lakhs

Co-PI [With Sucharit Katyal, AMPS, Kolkata]

Under Evaluation


Engineered Fluorescent Peptidomimetics for the Detection of Bacteria




5 year

₹ 800 L


 Under Evaluation



Development of a Cheap Solar Photocatalytic Process for Rapid Prevention of SARS-CoV-2 outbreak and Spread from Hospital/Community Generated Wastewater


Call on COVID-19


2 years,

40.0 Lakhs 


Final Stage Evaluation



Combinatorial delivery of Hydroxy Chloroquin and Remdesivir Using a Liposomal Formulation


1.5 years;

35.0 Lakhs


Co-PI-Dr. D. Pan, University of Maryland, USA

Under Evaluation