Rasmani Hazra, Ph.D.

Rasmani Hazra Image
Assistant Professor

Biology and Environmental Science Department
College of Arts and Sciences

Postdoctoral Fellow, Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory, USA
Ph.D., Molecular Biology, University of Sydney, Australia
M.Sc., Biochemistry, University of Kalyani, India
B.Sc. (Hons), Chemistry, Burdwan University, India

About Dr. Rasmani Hazra

Rasmani received her B.Sc. in Chemistry and M.Sc., in Biochemistry from India, where she was born. She joined the graduate program at the University of Sydney in Australia and received a Ph.D. degree for her work on Sertoli cell steroid nuclear receptors in postnatal testicular development and function. She was awarded the prestigious Australian Postgraduate Award to complete her graduate study. She was the single recipient of the Anita Payne Scholarship to attend the Frontiers in Reproduction Course at the Marine Biological Laboratory (MBL) in Woods Hole, MA during her Ph.D. study. She moved to the United States to pursue her postdoctoral research at Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory under the guidance of Dr. David Spector, where she studied the regulatory role of long non-coding RNAs in stem cell differentiation and cancer.

Dr. Rasmani Hazra joined as an Assistant Professor in the Department of Biology and Environmental Science at the University of New Haven in August 2023. She teaches Molecular Biology, Advance Cell Biology, Molecular Genomics and Developmental Biology courses. Her current research focuses on gaining deeper understanding of the biology of long non-coding RNAs in the context of glioblastoma, grade IV brain cancer. Her research carries important implications for identifying novel biomarkers and/or long non-coding RNA-targeted drug targets, ultimately leading to better treatments for deadly brain cancer.


The Hazra laboratory focuses on studying the function and molecular mechanism of long non-coding RNAs in tumorigenesis with a goal to identify potential therapeutic targets. Glioblastoma is the most aggressive, incurable malignancy worldwide. Glioblastoma tumors are maintained by the glioblastoma stem cell (GSC) population, which contributes to infiltration, migration, and therapeutic resistance. Our overarching goals are to (i) delineate the diverse cellular processes by which various GSC populations alter from their cells of origin, (ii) determine how GSCs communicate with normal cells in the body to support the tumor microenvironment and progression, and (iii) differentiate GSCs into normal cell types using a developmental biology toolkit. We use cutting-edge molecular, cellular, biochemical, and genome editing technologies, state-of-the-art cerebral brain organoids, patient-derived glioblastoma organoids, and mouse models to achieve these objectives. Altogether, Hazra laboratory envisions a thriving research program, which will comprehensively investigate the deep biological roots of heterogenous GSCs, as well as identify novel RNA-based therapies—and renewed hope—for patients facing this devastating disease.


*Denotes the corresponding author.

  • Hazra R*, Utama R, Naik P, Dobin A, Spector DL*. Identification of novel glioblastoma stem cell-specific lncRNAs using single-cell RNA-sequencing database. Stem Cell Reports 2023, doi: https://doi.org/10.1016/j.stemcr.2023.10.004
  • Hazra R, Brine L, Garcia L, Benz B, Chirathivat N, Shen M, Wilkinson JE, Lyons S, Spector DL. Platr4 is an early embryonic lncRNA that exerts its function downstream on cardiogenic mesodermal lineage commitment. Developmental Cell 2022, 57, 2450-2468.e7
  • Hazra R, Spector DL. Simultaneous visualization of RNA transcripts and proteins in whole-mount mouse preimplantation embryos using single-molecule fluorescence in situ hybridization and immunofluorescence microscopy. Frontier in cell and Developmental Biology, 2022, doi: 10.3389/fcell.2022.986261
  • Hazra R, Upton D, Desai R, Noori O, Jimenez M, Handelsman DJ, Allan CM. Elevated expression of the Sertoli cell androgen receptor disrupts male fertility. Am J Physiol Endocrinol Metab 2016, 311, E396-E404.
  • Hazra R, Upton D, Jimenez M, Allan CM, Handelsman DJ. In vivo actions of the Sertoli cell glucocorticoid receptor. Endocrinology 2014, 155, 1120-1130.
  • Hazra R, Jimenez M, Desai R, Handelsman DJ, Allan CM. Sertoli cell androgen receptor expression regulates temporal fetal and adult Leydig cell differentiation, function and population size. Endocrinology 2013, 154, 3410-3422.
  • Hazra R, Corcoran L, Robson M, McTavish KJ, Upton D, Handelsman DJ, Allan CM. Temporal role of Sertoli cell androgen receptor expression in spermatogenic development. Molecular Endocrinology 2013, 27, 12-24.
  • Walters KA, Middleton LJ, Hazra R, Jimenez M, Simanainen U, Allan CM, Handelsman DJ. Targeted loss of androgen receptor signaling in murine granulosa cells of preantral, and antral follicles causes female subfertility. Biology of Reproduction 2012, 87, 1-11.
  • Adina-Zada A, Hazra R, Sereeruk C, Jitrapakdee S, Zeczycki TN, Maurice MS, Cleland WW, Wallace JC, Attwood PV 2011. Probing the allosteric activation of pyruvate carboxylase using 2',3'-O-(2,4,6-trinitrophenyl) adenosine 5'-triphosphate as a fluorescent mimic of the allosteric activator acetyl CoA. Archives of Biochemistry and Biophysics 2011, 509, 117-26.