Prashanth Ramesh Rao

Associate Professor of Instruction


Office: BSF 133

Phone: 813-974-3698

Email: prao@usf.edu 


  • MBBS - Rural Medical College, Loni (then affiliated with University of Pune, India)
  • PhD in Life Sciences - Centre for Cellular & Molecular Biology, Hyderabad (affiliated with Jawaharlal Nehru University, New Delhi, India)
  • Post-doctoral training - University of California San Francisco


I joined the teaching faculty at USF in Fall of 2016. Every year, I teach or co-teach lecture courses in Biology I/Cellular Processes (BSC2010), General Genetics (PCB3063), Medical Botany (BOT3850), Online Cell Biology (PCB3023) and Developmental Biology (ZOO4694). I have taught more than 9000 undergraduate students during the last seven years at the University of South Florida.

Prior to joining USF, I was an Adjunct faculty at San Francisco State University where I taught lecture courses in Cell Biology and Developmental Biology.

My research training is in the field of developmental biology. In my PhD thesis that was carried out in the laboratory of Professor L.S. Shashidhara, I used ectopic expression in Drosophila melanogaster (fruit fly) to study human gene function and disease mutations. During my postdoctoral research carried out in the laboratory of Professor Thomas B. Kornberg, I co-discovered developmental compartments in the larval tracheal system of Drosophila. My future research interest lies in understanding the evolution of this developmental process across different insect orders.

To provide enhanced learning opportunities for large number of undergraduate students in the Department of Molecular Biosciences (Cell & Molecular Biology majors or Microbiology majors), I look forward to collaborating with pioneer faculty colleagues who have already developed and deployed “Course-based Undergraduate Research Experiences” or “CURE” projects in their classroom.