Download Curriculum Vitae

Dr. Kumar received his Bachelor's degree from the University of Chicago in Biology. As an undergraduate he worked with Dr. Robert Haselkorn on the genetics of the photosynthetic bacterium Rhodobacter capsulatus. He obtained his PhD from the University of California, San Diego working under the mentorship of Dr. Michael G. Rosenfeld.  Dr. Kumar biochemically and structurally characterized the NAD+ binding transcriptional corepressor C-terminal binding protein (CtBP). He joined the laboratory of Dr. Joseph Takahashi at Northwestern University as a postdoctoral researcher.  He subsequently moved with Dr. Takahashi to UTSW and is currenty an Instructor of Neuroscience.   

Dr. Kumar works on motivational reward pathways whose misregulation lead to diseases such as addiction, attention deficit and hyperactivity disorder, and depression.  He uses high throughput behavioral screens in mice to identify mutants in cocaine response and open field behavior.  This classic forward genetic approach is powerful but difficult to execute for behavioral assays in mice.  Dr. Kumar has developed several novel approaches to overcome these limitations in screening.  


Undergraduate University of Chicago (1995)
Graduate School University of California-San Diego (2003)

Research Interest

  • Addiction
  • Attention Deficit and Hyperactivity Disorder
  • Forward Genetic Screens for Behavior in Mice
  • High Throughput Behavioral Screens in Mice
  • Motivational Reward Pathways


Featured Publications LegendFeatured Publications

Epidermal stem cells ride the circadian wave.
Kumar V, Andersen B, Takahashi JS Genome Biol. 2013 Nov 14 11 140
Competing E3 Ubiquitin Ligases Govern Circadian Periodicity by Degradation of CRY in Nucleus and Cytoplasm.
Yoo SH, Mohawk JA, Siepka SM, Shan Y, Huh SK, Hong HK, Kornblum I, Kumar V, Koike N, Xu M, Nussbaum J, Liu X, Chen Z, Chen ZJ, Green CB, Takahashi JS Cell 2013 Feb 152 5 1091-105
Usf1, a suppressor of the circadian Clock mutant, reveals the nature of the DNA-binding of the CLOCK:BMAL1 complex in mice.
Shimomura K, Kumar V, Koike N, Kim TK, Chong J, Buhr ED, Whiteley AR, Low SS, Omura C, Fenner D, Owens JR, Richards M, Yoo SH, Hong HK, Vitaterna MH, Bass J, Pletcher MT, Wiltshire T, Hogenesch J, Lowrey PL, Takahashi JS Elife 2013 2 e00426
Transcriptional architecture and chromatin landscape of the core circadian clock in mammals.
Koike N, Yoo SH, Huang HC, Kumar V, Lee C, Kim TK, Takahashi JS Science 2012 Oct 338 6105 349-54
Brain and muscle Arnt-like protein-1 (BMAL1) controls circadian cell proliferation and susceptibility to UVB-induced DNA damage in the epidermis.
Geyfman M, Kumar V, Liu Q, Ruiz R, Gordon W, Espitia F, Cam E, Millar SE, Smyth P, Ihler A, Takahashi JS, Andersen B Proc. Natl. Acad. Sci. U.S.A. 2012 Jul 109 29 11758-63
PARP around the clock.
Kumar V, Takahashi JS Cell 2010 Sep 142 6 841-3