Dr. D. S. Sharada received her Bachelor’s and Master’s degree (1998) in Chemistry from Osmania University, Hyderabad and was awarded Mohan Reddy Memorial Gold Medal (B.Sc, 1996) and Sadashiv Devdas Thatte Memorial Gold Medal (M.Sc, 1998). Her fascination for Chemistry in general and Organic Chemistry, in particular, was kindled during the M.Sc program, by the excellent teachers, and in particular Prof. David Krupanandam, who motivated her to pursue higher studies. After securing CSIR-JRF (1998), she had the honor to pursue her doctoral studies in Baylis-Hillman chemistry with Prof. D. Basavaiah, Hyderabad Central University (HCU) who obtained Ph.D. with Prof. Gurbakhsh Singh (belonging to the academic genealogy of R. B. Woodward) and the postdoctoral fellowship with Prof. H. C. Brown at Purdue University. Subsequently, she joined in the postdoctoral program with Prof. Jonathan S. Lindsey from North Carolina State University, USA, involving in the synthesis of tetra-pyrrolic macrocycles for molecular engineering application in biomedical and molecular electronics. Later, she moved to Drug Discovery Department, Orchid Pharma, Chennai, India as a research scientist, identifying novel small molecules, particularly for HDAC and IL6/STAT3 as therapeutic targets in cancer therapy. Her desire to start an independent research career has led to the award of DST-WOS-A fellowship, wherein after a short stay at CLRI, Chennai, she moved to Department of Chemistry, IIT Hyderabad as Assistant Professor (2011 to 2016) and Associate Professor (2017 to 2022).
Currently she is a Professor at Department of Green Energy Technology, Pondicherry University, India. With the rich and diverse research experience throughout the career in interdisciplinary areas, her focus is on contributing towards Energy Science and Technology. She has authored more than 50 research papers in reputed international journals and holds three patents. She has guided six PhD students, three Post-docs and several MSc students at IIT Hyderabad. Currently, her H-index is 24.
The diverse chemical processes occurring in nature have always intrigued her moreover, the societal demand for environmentally friendly processes have motivated to focus mainly on the development of bioinspired materials and technologies for energy applications and sustainable chemistry. Current research and development focus areas are:
- Functional Organic materials for Optoelectronic and Energy Applications, Organic Photovoltaic Solar Cells
- Photocatalysis for environmental remediation applications
- Photocatalytic, Electrocatalytic and Biocatalytic conversion of Biomass to valuable products
- Photocatalytic valorization of waste (plastic, CO2, industrial, agricultural) to value-added commodities.