Staff profile

Dr Shivadas Sivasubramaniam

Head of Biomedical and Forensic Science

Dr Shivadas Sivasubramaniam


Biomedical Science and Human Biology, Forensic Science


College of Science and Engineering


School of Human Sciences

Research centre

Human Sciences Research Centre




Kedleston Road, Derby Campus



I am the Head of Biomedical Forensic science, within the School of Human Sciences. I currently lead and co-ordinate an enthusiastic academic team in research-informed teaching. We develop student-focused curricula with a specific emphasis to enhance graduate employability.

Within this relatively new but rapidly expanding discipline, there are approximately 15 academics within my team, delivering a variety of undergraduate and postgraduate programmes. My focus is mainly on enhancing student engagement via active learning strategies, internationalisation and pedagogic development (relating to the theory and practice of education) with consultancy activities in the fields of biomedical and forensic science.

I joined the University in August 2018 after completing 22 years as a senior and then principal lecturer in another higher education institution within the UK. I am proud to lead a vibrant and passionate academic community. My vision is to improve and enhance teaching and research activities within this discipline leading to an established centre of excellence for medical sciences.

I have a successful research career, focusing on both biomedical science and pedagogic approaches in scientific teaching. My scientific research specialises on the environmental and nutritional influences on early trophoblast invasion linking to pregnancy-related disorders such as pre-eclampsia. Likewise, my pedagogic research focuses on improving student engagement, academic integrity (including plagiarism awareness, deterrence) and medical ethics. I am one of the founding members of European Network of Academic Integrity (ENAI) which was established via collaborations amongst several European universities supported by the Erasmus+ Strategic Partnerships project (2016-1-CZ01-KA203-023949). The main objectives are to promote integrity in whole academia (i.e. education, research and other aspects of academic sector) and to collaborate towards research and promotion of academic integrity. I am also delivering workshops to medical/biomedical students and researchers around the world on medical and bioethics

Teaching responsibilities

As a biomedical scientist, I have over 25 years of experience in teaching physiology, molecular pharmacology, human reproduction, and bio/medical ethics to undergraduate and postgraduate students. My main focus has been on training and assisting students for Institute of Biomedical Science (IBMS) registration. I am currently involved in teaching a variety of modules from NQF5 to 7 including human reproduction, translational oncology, research methods and biochemistry. As a student-focused educator, I take pride in developing new innovative ways of teaching and learning enhancement activities. At undergraduate level I focus on, blended learning activities using students as partners, peer-assisted learning with problem-solving skill development, and laboratory-linked enquiry-based learning activities. On the other hand, at post-graduate level, I focus on the internationalisation of curricula, flexi-learning (leading pharmacology module), research-informed teaching and cross-border peer-assisted blended learning activities. I have shared my experiences from this wide range of learning enhancement activities in the form of presentations, seminars and publications.


Professional interests

My professional interests are to lead and co-ordinate biomedical/forensic science area with the focus to develop external industry and research links. These, in my opinion, would enhance a student cantered curriculum that will enhance learning, academic integrity and graduate employability. This includes recruitment, teaching, enhancing student engagement, plagiarism prevention, internationalisation and pedagogic research development.

From an instructional design point of view, I have pioneered anti-plagiarism scholarly activities within biosciences. I am conducting several global student seminars and produced a student handbook containing advice on methods to avoid, deter, and detect plagiarism. These strategies were not only useful for the students but also helped the staff to employ these tools effectively to reduce plagiarism. Also, I have the responsibility for academic leadership in advising academic teams on plagiarism deterrence, detection and suitable punishments. Moreover, I have been working in conjunction with JISC-plagiarism advisory service since its launch.


Research interests

Scientific Research Interests

 My main research interest is on investigating underlying concept of molecular events that are associated with trophoblast invasion as a model of tumour invasiveness. My laboratory focusses on the role of invasion specific novel factors such as onco-foetal proteins during placental invasion. My laboratory has standardised protocols for generating stem-like cells (SLC’s) from transformed first trimester placental and choriocarcinoma (placental tumour) cell lines to focus on SLC’s as a model of tumour invasiveness. We intend to use proteomic and computational biology in addition to the usual comparative analysis of protein and mRNA expressions. Using the same 3D cell culture systems, we are also trying to understand the effects of environmental pollution on the molecular events/factors that are involved in early trophoblast invasion.

Pedagogic Research Interests

 I have been an active researcher in developing novel approaches in teaching biomedical sciences. My pedagogic research interests include (a) internationalisation; (b) Student-centred teaching, (c) peer-assisted learning and (b) academic integrity/plagiarism deterrence. Working closely with the Higher Education Academy (HEA) and Plagiarism Advisory Services (PAS), I have addressed educating students to enhance their academic writing and improve their graduate attributes. This has resulted in several publications in HEA and PAS conferences. Also, I have developed innovative teaching techniques to educate under- and post-graduate students and plagiarism deterrence.

Scholarly Activities

Head of Ethical Advisory Group, European Network for Academic Integrity (ENAI)

Reviewer for scientific journals (a) Placenta; (b) American Journal of Preventive Medicine; (c) American Journal of Physiology; and (d) Journal of Perinatal Medicine.


Prof Marco Cosentino, Centro di Ricerche in Farmacologia Medica, Università degli Studi dell'Insubria, Varese, Lombardia, Italy

Prof Graham Pockley, John van Geest Cancer Research Centre, Nottingham Trent University

Prof K Sunder, Kalasilingam Academy of Research and Education, Krishnan Koil, Srivilliputhur, Tamil Nadu 626128, India

European Network of Academic Integrity, Zemedelska 1, 613 00 Brno, Czech Republic   

Membership of professional bodies


Undergraduate qualifications

Postgraduate qualifications

Recent conferences

  1. Chair/Presenter - Retrospective analysis of plagiaristic practices within a cinematic industry in India – A tip in the ocean of icebergs June 19 - 21, Mykolas Romeris University, Vilnius, Lithuania
  2. Invited Panel member - Academic integrity in medical research and teaching. May 9 - 11, 2018, Çanakkale Onsekiz Mart University, Barbaros, Turkey
  3. Chair/Discussion Panel member - Strategies for addressing contract cheating May 24 - 27, 2017Brno, Czech Republic
  4. Presenter (full paper) - New breed of Ghost-Writers: Emerging threat to academic community via Internationalisation and social media. June 10 - 12, 2015, Brno, Czech Republic
  5. Conference organizer - HEA STEM (Biosciences): Use of information technology (IT) to enhance peer-assisted large group laboratory-based learning in Biosciences [28 Oct 2013; Nottingham Trent University, Nottingham, UK.
  6.  Presenter - Electronic plagiarism detection software as self-teaching tool for plagiarism avoidance in Bioscience undergraduates, June 12–13, 2013 Brno, Czech Republic
  7. Invited Speaker - HEA STEM: Enhancing the International Student Learning Experience in the Biosciences; 24 May 2012; University of Bath, Bath, UK.
  8. IFPA International Conference 2011 – Anushuya Tamang, Preethi Doravari, Morgan Mathieu, Shiva Sivasubramaniam (2012) Comparative analysis on the invasion potentials of transformed human first trimester trophoblast and choriocarcinoma cell lines Placenta 33 (9) A49.

Experience in industry

I have been working in European Collection of Animal Cell Culture (ECACC), at the Centre for Applied Microbiology and Research, Porton Down, Salisbury, UK

Recent publications

Pedagogic publications

  1. Umamaheswaran, P., Ramachandran, S. & Sivasubramaniam, S.D. Retrospective Analysis of Plagiaristic Practices within a Cinematic Industry in India – a Tip in the Ocean of Icebergs. J Acad Ethics (2020). 
  2. Loreta TAUGINIENĖ, Inga GAIŽAUSKAITĖ, Irene GLENDINNING, Július KRAVJAR, Milan OJSTERŠEK,  Laura RIBEIRO, Tatjana ODIŅ, Franca MARINO,  Marco COSENTINO and Shiva SIVASUBRAMANIAM (2018) Glossary for Academic Integrity Report Erasmus+ project - “European Network for Academic Integrity” https://doi: 10.13140/RG.2.2.34997.37608  [ENAI report online
  3. Shiva D Sivasubramaniam and Sharavan Ramachandran (2015) A new breed of ghost writers: Exploring the new threat to the academic community via Internationalisation and social media. Conference proceedings; Plagiarism across Europe and Beyond (Full paper) June 10-12, 2015; 110-119.
  4. D Sivasubramaniam (2014) “Perfecting the plagiarist”: feedback based continuous assessment strategy to enhance good academic writing – Proceedings of 6th International Integrity &Plagiarism Conference; Promoting authentic assessment - 16th - 18th June 2014 Newcastle, UK (accepted for publication).
  5. D. Sivasubramaniam (2014) Student centred teaching - Can university teaching be enhanced by using student feedback as a positive influence for module delivery? A pilot study Proceedings of the HEA STEM Learning and Teaching Conference (Full Paper).
  6. Arsenio Fernández López, Christian Thode, D. Sivasubramaniam, Guybon Berrnico, Saúl Redondo Blanco (2013) Peer-assisted learning (PAL) enhancement of oral communication in bio-molecular sciences amongst multi-lingual post-graduates: A pilot study between two British and Spanish universities. se celebrará en Madrid la segunda edición del Congreso Internacional sobre Innovación, Aprendizaje y Competitividad. CINAIC-6th to 8th November 2013. 192 - 197
  7. D. Sivasubramaniam (2013) Sustainability in Student Engagement – Assessing the Impact of Formative ‘Feed-Forward’ on Reflective Learning. Proceedings of the HEA STEM Learning and Teaching Conference (Full Paper). DOI: 10.11120/stem.hea.2013.0001.
  8. D. Sivasubramaniam (2013) Electronic plagiarism detection software as self-teaching tool for plagiarism avoidance in Bioscience undergraduates. Conference Proceedings (Full Paper) Plagiarism across Europe and Beyond. Brno, Czech Republic June 12 – 13, 2013; 149 - 158
  9. S D Sivasubramaniam Internationalisation of Bioscience curricula turning the challenge into success. Proceedings of the HEA STEM Learning and Teaching Conference. DOI: 10.11120/stem.hea.2012.002
  10. D. Sivasubramaniam (2007). Assisting students to avoid plagiarism: the role of formative workshops. In: Duggan, F. ed. 2nd International Plagiarism Conference 2006 Proceedings. Newcastle: Northumbria Learning Press, pp. 211 – 219.
  11. D. Sivasubramaniam (2004) Plagiarism amongst Bio-medical Science undergradutes - concerned academics versus ignorant students proceeding of 1st International Conference on Plagiarism (Eds) Andy Peden Smith and Fiona Duggan. JISC, 205-224.

 Scientific Publications:

  1. Ebegboni VJ, Dickenson JM, Sivasubramaniam SD (2019) Antioxidative effects of flavonoids and their metabolites against hypoxia/reoxygenation-induced oxidative stress in a human first trimester trophoblast cell line. Food Chem. 30;272: 117-125.  - current impact factor 4.94
  2. Reham M. Balahmar, David J. Boocock, Clare Coveney, Sankalita Ray, Jayakumar Vadakekolathu, Tarik Regad, Selman Ali and Shiva Sivasubramaniam (2017) Identification and characterisation of NANOG+/ OCT-4high/SOX2+ doxorubicin-resistant stem-like cells from transformed trophoblastic cell lines. Oncotarget. 9:7054-7065. - – Current Impact factor (2016) 5.16
  3. Ugun-Klusek A, Tamang A, Loughna P, Billett E, Buckley G, and Sivasubramaniam S (2011) Reduced placental vascular reactivity to 5-hydroxytryptamine in pre-eclampsia and the status of 5HT2A receptors. Vascular Pharmacology. 55(5-6): 157-162. DOI: 10.1016/j.vph.2011.07.006 – Current Impact factor 4.62
  4. Venkataraman Deepak, Sureshbabu Ram Kumar Pandian, Shiva. D. Sivasubramaniam, Hariharan Nellaiah and Krishnan Sundar (2015) Synthesis of polyelectrolyte nanoparticles from anticancer exopolysaccharide isolated from probiotic Lactobacillus acidophilus. Research Journal of microbiology. 10(5): 193-204. DOI: 10.3923/jm.2015.193.204 – Current Impact factor 0.3
  5. Sureshbabu Ram Kumar Pandian, Venkataraman Deepak, Shiva D. Sivasubramaniam, Hariharan Nellaiah, Krishnan Sundar (2015) Optimization and purification of anticancer enzyme L-glutaminase from Alcaligenes faecalis KLU102. Biologia. (Section: Cellular and Molecular Biology) 69(12) 1644-1651. DOI:10.2478/s11756-014-0486-1 – Current Impact factor 0.87
  6. Deepak V, Pandian SR, Sivasubramaniam SD, Nellaiah H, Sundar K (2015) Optimization of Anticancer Exopolysaccharide Production from Probiotic Lactobacillus Acidophilus by Response Surface Methodology. Prep Biochem Biotechnol. DOI: 10.1080/10826068.2015.1031386 - Current Impact factor 0.699
  7. Hafeez Basha. R and D. Sivasubramaniam (2011) Awareness on Paper-presentation (book Chapter) in: How to become a researcher. Eds. Hafeez Bhasha, CAFET-INNOVA Technical Society, Hydrabad, India – Chapter 2, 13-24.

 Book authorship:

  1.  John Dickenson, Fiona Freeman, Chris Lloyd Mills, Christian Thode, Shiva Sivasubramaniam (2012) Molecular Pharmacology: From DNA to Drug Discovery - ISBN: 978-0-470-68443-6 (424 pages); December 2012, Wiley-Blackwell
  2. Hafeez Basha. R and D. Sivasubramaniam (2011) Awareness on Paper-presentation (book Chapter) in: How to become a researcher. Eds. Hafeez Bhasha, CAFET-INNOVA Technical Society, Hydrabad, India – Chapter 2, 13-24. Pedagogic Publications
  1. Paneerselvam Umamaheswaran, Sharavan Ramachandran and Shivadas Sivasubramaniam (2020) Retrospective Analysis of Plagiaristic Practices within a Cinematic Industry in India – a Tip in the Ocean of Icebergs. Journal of Academic Ethics
  2. Loreta TAUGINIENĖ, Inga GAIŽAUSKAITĖ, Irene GLENDINNING, Július KRAVJAR, Milan OJSTERŠEK,  Laura RIBEIRO, Tatjana ODIŅ, Franca MARINO,  Marco COSENTINO and Shiva SIVASUBRAMANIAM (2018) Glossary for Academic Integrity Report Erasmus+ project - “European Network for Academic Integrity” https://doi: 10.13140/RG.2.2.34997.37608  [ENAI report online]