Kalpathy Ramaier Katchap Easwaran did his BSc from Victoria College, Palghat and MSc in Physics from Bombay University. He joined the Department of Physics, Indian Institute of Science (IISc), Bangalore (1962) for PhD degree and earned it in 1967 while working on NMR in solids, particularly, ferroelectrics. He was a post-doctoral Research Associate at the Tata Institute of Fundamental Research, Mumbai (1966-67), and at the University of Washington, Seattle. He was a Visiting Scientist for a year at the famous Institute Josef Stefan in Ljubljana, Slovenia. He held Astra Chair Professor and Chairman of the Department of Molecular Biophysics, IISc. While at IISc, he held Visiting Assignments at Harvard University Medical School, Boston; University of Connecticut, Farmington; and Georgetown University and Naval Research Laboratory, Washington. He was also awarded the Senior Research Associateship of the International Centre for Theoretical Physics, Trieste (1991-96). He was also a Visiting Professor at the Department of Biological Sciences, National University of Singapore (2001-03). He was an INSA Senior Scientist at IISc, Bangalore (2005-06). In 2007, he moved from academia to Industry to head the R&D laboratory as President-Research of ABL Biotechnologies Ltd, Chennai, an emerging biotechnology company, where he still continues to work.
Academic and Research Achievements: On returning to India in 1970, Professor Easwaran joined as a faculty of the Molecular Biophysics Unit, IISc, Bangalore. He, along with few other faculty, built the Department with the guidance of Professor GN Ramachandran and today it is one of the nationally and internationally well known centres for Structural Biology and Molecular Biophysics. He established a very active research group in NMR and membrane biophysics. His research contributions in the areas of ionophores and ion-transport across membranes, design and development of anti-fungal drugs, lipid and membrane structures, and spectroscopic analysis of peptides and proteins are well recognized. He has published over 90 research papers and six review articles. Under his guidance 14 students received PhD and three students received Diploma in Molecular Biophysics.
Other Contributions: As the first Chairman of the International Relations Cell of IISc, Easwaran brought in several inter-institute academic research and exchange programmes between IISc and Institutions abroad. He served as Member and Chairman of a number of committees of IISc, INSA, DBT, DST, CSIR and of several universities in India and at the National University of Singapore. He has organized a number of national and international conferences in India and abroad. He also has helped schools and colleges in Bangalore in promoting 'Life Science' education programmes, particularly, in biotechnology. He has edited two books.
Awards and Honours: Professor Easwaran was awarded the SS Bhatnagar Prize (1984) and was elected as Fellow, Indian Academy of Sciences, Bangalore (1986). He is the recipient of Ranbaxy Research Award (1994) and was awarded the ASTRA Chair Professorship at IISc (1994-97).