Aman Sharma

ABBS Graduate Student

Aman Sharma

ISB 465A



Former PI: 

Aman Sharma is currently a 5th year PhD candidate in the ABBS graduate program, planning to finish his PhD in May of 2021. Aman is currently working in the molecular mechanisms of breast cancer induced by estrogen and studying the effect of xenoestrogens in mammary gland biology. The major focus of his work is to understand and explore the DNA damage response and R loop mechanism induced by the hormone 17β-estradiol (E2) and also studying the effects of xenoestrogens/endocrine disruptors in mammary gland biology. The ultimate goal of his research is to understand the mechanism of how E2 promotes breast cancer and also to study the novel pathways by which xenoestrogens stimulate DNA damage through estrogen receptors without activating canonical transcriptional responses.

Aman started his PhD journey in the Fall of 2016, where he completed his first lab rotation in the lab of Dr. Hélène Cousin and Dr. Dominique Alfandari. He worked on Cranial Neural Crest (CNC) cell migration in frog embryos as a part of this rotation project.

Aman earned his undergraduate degree in Industrial Biotechnology at Shri Mata Vaishno Devi University in India.

Recent Publications:
1. Majhi PD and Sharma A et al. (Jan 2020) “Benzophenone-3 and propylparaben induce estrogen receptor-dependent R-loop and DNA damage in breast epithelial cells”, Environmental Health Perspectives. (NIEHS/NIH Extramural paper of the month March 2020)
2. Karen A. Dunphy, Amye L. Black, Amy Roberts, Aman Sharma, et al. (March 2020) “Inter-individual variation in response to estrogen in human breast explants”, Journal of mammary gland biology & neoplasia. (Research figure published on the cover page of the journal)


1. Prabin Dhangada Majhi, Aman Sharma, D. Joseph Jerry, (2019). METHODS FOR PREDICTING ER-MEDIATED DNA DAMAGE; USPTO Serial No.: 62/914,110 (Patent Pending).

Poster Presentations/Chalk Talk/Seminars
1. Poster title - Estrogen-mediated R-loop formation associated with DNA damage may indicate individual vulnerability to breast cancer. Sharma (Presenter) et. al (2020). Poster presented in DNA Damage, Mutation and Cancer at Gordon Research Seminar (GRS) and Gordon Research Conference (GRC), Ventura, CA (March 2020).
2. Presented my research work and represented VASCI in Chemistry-Biology Interface (CBI) Chalk Talk (January 2020).
3. Presented my research work and represented VASCI in “8th Annual Life Sciences Graduate Student Symposium” organized by Life Sciences Graduate Research Council, UMass Amherst (November 2018).
4. Presented my research work in VASCI seminar organized by VASCI department in September 2018.
5. Poster title - Xenoestrogens cause estrogen receptor-dependent R-loop formation and DNA damage. Sharma (Presenter) et. al (2018).
- Presented at “American Association for Cancer Research (AACR) Annual Meeting 2018,” McCormick Place North/South Chicago, IL, (April 2018).
- Presented at “Veterinary and Animal Sciences (VASCI) retreat,” Montague retreat Center, MA, (May 2018).
- Presented at “13th Annual Breast Cancer and Environmental Research Program (BCERP) annual meeting,” Washington, DC (November 2018).
6. Poster title - DNA Damage Induced by Xenoestrogens at Doses Below Those Required for Transcriptional Activation or Proliferation. Majhi and Sharma (Presenter) et. al. (2017).
- Presented at the 1st Molecular Cell Biology (MCB) retreat, Mount Stratton, VT, October 2017.
- Presented at 12th Annual Breast Cancer and Environmental Research Program (BCERP), Monrovia, CA, November 2017.


1. 3rd Annual DNA damage, Mutation and Cancer at Gordon Research Seminar and Conference, Ventura, California (March 2020).
2. 13th Annual Breast Cancer and Environmental Research Program (BCERP) Annual meeting, Washington, DC, (November 2018).
3. American Association for Cancer Research (AACR) Annual Meeting, McCormick Place North/South Chicago, Illinois, (April 2018).
4. 12th Annual Breast Cancer and Environmental Research Program (BCERP) Annual meeting, Monrovia, CA, (November 2017).
5. 2014 NextGen Genomics, Bioinformatics and Technologies (NGBT) Conference conducted by SciGenome Research Foundation (SGRF), National Institute of Mental Health and Neurosciences (NIMHANS) & Institute of Bioinformatics (IOB) in Bangalore, India, (November 2014).
6. TM’s 3rd World Immunology Online Conference held on (March 2014) conducted by TARGET MEETING, USA.

Honors/Awards Graduate School

1. Inducted into “The Honor Society of Phi Kappa Phi” for academic achievement (2020).
2. Featured in “Life in the lab” magazine on Earth’s day issue for promoting lab sustainability (April 2020).
3. Awarded 2020 Pre-Dissertation Research Grant by UMass Amherst (2019-2020).
4. Winner of a national contest “Journey to Discovery contest” organized by Thermo Fisher company and received Vespa bike worth $3899 as a prize winner (August 2018).
5. Received certificate for excellent oral presentation at 8th Annual Life Sciences Graduate Research Symposium 2018.
6. Winner of “Minute Immobilizers Contest” organized by UMass Amherst Alumni Association (March 2017).

Other activities:

1. Representing as a VASCI Senator in the Graduate Student Senate (GSS) University of Massachusetts, Amherst.(October 2016 – Present)
2. Presented research photo “Estrogenic R loops” in Research Art Science Exhibition (RASE) 2019, organized by UMass Amherst.
3. Participated in BMC “Research in Progress” photo competition (Fall 2018).
4. Participated in “Journey to Discovery” contest organized by Thermo Fisher Scientific (Summer 2018)
5. Worked as member of the Finance Committee in Graduate Student Senate for 1 year (Fall 2016 – Spring 2017) to plan budgets and allocate funds to more than 100 Graduate Student Organizations to organize multiple events.