Venu Gurram, PhD

Venu Gurram, PhD

Postdoctoral Research Associate, Urano Lab


Venu Gurram was born and brought up in India in a city called Hyderabad. He did his M.Res (Master of Research) at Nottingham Trent University, Nottingham, UK, before completing his PhD at Universite Paul Sabatier, Toulouse, France, under the supervision of Prof. Pascale Belenguer where he worked on mitochondrial dynamics and Dominant Optic Atrophy caused by mutations in OPA1 gene. Venu joined the Prof. Fumi Urano’s lab in September 2021 as a postdoc. Since then, he works on projects aiming to develop both genetic and pharmacological therapies for optic atrophy in Wolfram Syndrome.

Research Interests

Wolfram syndrome (WS) is a rare neurodegenerative disorder characterized by juvenile onset diabetes mellitus, optic atrophy, and neurodegeneration. In most cases, WS is caused by pathogenic variants in the WFS1 gene. WFS1 encodes a transmembrane endoplasmic reticulum protein known to be involved in regulating ER stress and calcium homeostasis. URANO Lab is working on Wolfram Syndrome for more than 12 years and committed to develop therapy for WS. Venu’s current research interest is to characterize the phenotypes of optic atrophy in various rodent models of WS to know the disease onset, severity and ultimately, to develop both pharmacological and regenerative gene therapy. His future interests include studying and developing therapy for brainstem degeneration in their rodent models of WS.