Prof. M. B. Syiem

Biochemistry Department

Designation: Professor


M. Sc. (NEHU); Ph.D. (NEHU), NET: (UGC-CSIR)

Areas of Interest: Cyanobacterial diversity, nitrogen metabolism, prospects of biofertilizers and microbial bioremediation

Experience: 25 years of teaching and research experience

Publications/Books: 61 scientific papers in international and national journals, 12 book chapters, 1 laboratory guidelines.

Research projects: completed five.

Ph. D. awarded: Nine

Papers presented in Conferences/Seminars: 68

Prof. Mayashree Syiem joined the Department as Lecture in 2002 after eight years of teaching in the Department of Biotechnology, St. Anthony’s College, Shillong. She was recipient of Government of India Scheme of Scholarships in approved residential secondary schools, NET and CSIR Research Associateship and had worked as a research associate in an Indo-France project. Prof. Syiem has more than 25 years of teaching and research experience and has been working on various aspects of cyanobacterial diversity, nitrogen metabolism, prospects of biofertilizers and microbial bioremediation. She has published 61 scientific papers in international and national journals, 12 book chapters, 1 laboratory guidelines and 68 abstracts in international and national symposium/conferences/ seminars etc. She has completed five research projects from different funding agencies (DST, DBT, UGC). Nine students have completed Ph.D. under her guidance and currently four research scholars are registered under her. She has been a member of MBBS, MD counselling of NEIGRIHMS, Indian Science Congress and is a NAAC assessor since 2014. She is also a reviewer for many journals of repute including Journal of Hazardous Material, Journal of Phytoremediation, Journal of Aquatic Toxicology and CLEAN-Soil, Air, Water.

Research Projects


  1. DBT Twinning project: ‘Strategy development for mitigation of heavy metals in surface waters around coal mining areas using native cyanobacterial strains.’ Completed in 2016. Project cost: 36 Lacs.
  2. UGC project: ‘A detailed study on the potential of locally isolated cyanobacteria in biosorption of heavy metals common in water bodies of Meghalaya.’ Completed in 2016. Project cost: 14 Lacs.



  1. Anthoceros-Nostoc Symbiosis: Immunoelectronmicroscopic Localisation of Nitrogenase, Glutamine Synthase, Phycoerythrin  and  Ribulose-1,5- bisphosphate Carboxylase/ Oxygenase in the Cyanobiont and in the Cultured (Free  living) Isolate  Nostoc 7801. A. N. Rai, M. Borthskur, S. Singh, B. Bergman. Journal of General Microbiology 135: 385-395 (1989).
  2. Immunogold Localisation of Hydrogenase in the Cyanobacterial-Plant Symbioses  Peltigera caninaAnthoceros punctutus and  Gunera  Magellanica. A. N. Rai, M. Borthakur, E. Soderback, B. Bergman. Symbiosis, 12: 131-144 (1992).
  3. Nitrogenase derepression, its regulation and metabolic changes associated with diazotrophy in the non- heterocystous cyanobacterium Plectonema boryanum Pcc 73110. A. N. Rai, M. Borthakur, B. Bergman. Journal of General Microbiology. 138: 481-491 (1992).
  4. Immobilized Frankia spores remained viable on dry storage and on restoration to medium regenerated active colonies. Mayashree Borthakur, Arnab Sen, Arvind K. Misra. Plant and Soil.181: 227-231 (1996).
  5. Symbiotic Cyanobacteria: Biotechnological applications. A. N. Rai, M. Borthakur, D. Paul. Journal of Scientific Industrial Research. 55: 742-752 (1996).
  6. Exogenous nitrogen sources do not drastically reduce nitrogenase activity in polymer entrapped Frankia. Mayashree Borthakur, Arnab Sen, Arvind K. Misra.    Indian Journal of Experimental Biology. 35: 173-175 (1996).
  7. Entrapped cyanobacteria: Implications for biotechnology. Mayashree B syiem. Indian Journal of Biotechnology. 4: 209-215 (2005).
  8. Nitrogen metabolism, artificial association study in two cyanobacterial isolates and the assessment of their potential as biofertilizer. Mayashree B Syiem, Arvind Kumar Singh, Amar Nath Rai, Nonibala Khumanthem, Rajkumar Somendrajit Singh, Samrat Adhikari, Amrita Bhattacharjee. Indian Journal of Biotechnology. 6: 397-403, 2007.
  9. Isolation and characterization of a Mastigocladus species capable of growth, N2-fixation and N-assimilation at elevated temperature, Nonibala Khumanthem, Mayashree B. Syiem, Arvind K. Singh and Amar Nath Rai. Indian Journal of Microbiology. 47(4), 345-352 (2007).
  10. A common transport system for methionine, L-methionine-DL-sulfoximine (MSX), and phosphinothricin (PPT) in the diazotrophic cyanobacterium Nostoc muscurum. Arvind Kumar Singh, Mayashree B. Syiem, Rajkumar S. Singh, Samrat Adhikari, Amar Nath Rai  Current Microbiology. 56, (5), 436 – 441 (2008).
  11. Identification and documentation of two previously unreported foliose lichens from Meghalaya, North-East India. Luxemburgh Hynniewta, Athokpam Pinokiyo and Mayashree B Syiem. Journal of Economic and Taxonomic Botany. 33 (3), 589-593 (2009).
  12. Significance of cyanobacterial diversity in different ecological conditions of Meghalaya, India. Mayashree B Syiem, B Bashisha Nongbri, Athokpam Pinokiyo, Amrita Bhattacharjee and Natasha A Nongrum and Luxemburgh Hynniewta. Journal of Applied and Natural Science. 2(1): 134-139 (2010).
  13. An efficient protocol for long term preservation of cyanobacteria. Mayashree B Syiem, Amrita Bhattacharjee. Journal of advanced laboratory research in Biology. 1(1):54-60 (2010).
  14. Increase in intracellular proline content in Anabaena variabilis during stress conditions. Mayashree B Syiem, Natasha A Nongrum. Journal of Applied and Natural Science. 3(1): 119-123 (2011).
  15. Nostoc cyanobiont in the cyanolichens, Sticta weigelii of eastern himalayan region: Isolation, physiological and biochemical characterization. Mayashree B Syiem, Luxemburgh Hynniewta and Athokpam Pinokiyo. Journal of Experimental Sciences. 2(9): 36-40 (2011).
  16. Molecular identification and characterization of a rice field cyanobacteria for its possible use as biofertilizer in acidic environment. Mayashree B Syiem, Natasha A Nongrum, B Bashisha Nongbri, Amrita Bhattacharjee, David L Biate and Arvind K Misra. Research and reviews: A journal of microbiology and virology 1(3) 1-12 (2011).
  17. Analysis of heavy metal accumulation in water and fish (Cyprinus carpio) meat from Umiam lake in Meghalaya, India. B Bashisha Nongbri, Mayashree B Syiem. International Multidisciplinary Research Journal. 2 (2):73-76 (2012).
  18. Diversity analysis and molecular typing of cyanobacteria isolated from various ecological niches in the state of Meghalaya, North-East India. B Bashisha Nongbri, Mayashree B Syiem. Environmental Engineering Research 17(S1): S1-S6 (2012).
  19. Effects of copper ion (Cu2+) on the physiological and biochemical activities of the cyanobacterium Nostoc ANTH. Natasha A Nongrum, Mayashree B Syiem. Environmental Engineering Research 17(S1): S1-S5 (2012).
  20. Structural and functional stability of regenerated cyanobacteria following immobilization. Mayashree B syiem, Amrita Bhattacharjee. Journal of Applied Phycology.27: 743-753 (2015).
  21. Bioremoval of Cu(II), Zn(II), Pb(II) and Cd(II) by Nostoc muscorum isolated from a coal mining site Jayeeta Hazarika, Kannan Pakshirajan, Arindam Sinharoy, Mayashree B. Syiem. Journal of Applied Phycology. 27:1525–1534 (2015).
  22. Cu(II) removal by biosorption using chemically modified biomass of Nostoc muscorum – a cyanobacterium isolated from a coal mining site. N. Arul Manikandan, Kannan Pakshirajan, Mayashree B. Syiem. International Journal of ChemTech Research. 7(01), 80-92 (2015).
  23. Zn (II) and Cu(II) removal by Nostoc muscorum: a cyanobacterium isolated from a coal mining pit in Chiehruphi, Meghalaya, India Smita Goswami, Omega L. Diengdoh Mayashree B. Syiem, Kannan Pakshirajan, MotheGopi Kiran, Canadian Journal of Microbiology, 61: 209-215 (2015).
  24. Cadmium removal by Anabaena doliolum Ind1 isolated from a coal mining area in Meghalaya, India: associated structural and physiological alterations. S. Goswami, Mayashree. B. Syiem, K. Pakshirajan. Environmental Engineering Research. 20 (01): 041-050 (2015).
  25. Heavy Metal Removal from Multicomponent System by the Cyanobacterium Nostoc muscorum: Kinetics and Interaction Study. A. S. Roy, J. Hazarika, N. A. Manikandan, K. Pakshirajan , Mayashree B. Syiem. Applied Biochemistry and Biotechnology. 175(8). 3863-3874 (2015).
  26. Random sampling of cyanobacterial diversity from five locations within Eastern Himalayan Biodiversity hot spot. Rabbul I.A.  Ahad, Tridip Phukan, Mayashree B. Syiem. International Journal of Advanced Research in Biological Sciences. 2: (5). 20-29 (2015).
  27. Zn2+ Biosorption Efficiency of a Nostoc sp. Isolated From a Coal Mine in Sohra, Meghalaya. Omega L. Diengdoh, Susan M. Warjri, Mayashree B. Syiem.  International Journal of Industrial Biotechnology and Biomaterials. 1(2): 1-12 (2015).
  28. Analysis of Viability Index and Growth of Regenerated Cyanobacteria Following Long-Term Preservation in Calcium Alginate Beads. Tridip Phukan, Rabbul I. A. Ahad, Mayashree B. Syiem. International Journal of Industrial Biotechnology and Biomaterials. 1(2): 13-22 (2015).
  29. Cu (II) removal by Nostoc muscorum and its effect on biomass growth and nitrate uptake: A photobiorector study. S. Arun. Arul N. Manikandan, K. Pakshirajan, G. Pugazhenthi, Mayashree B. Syiem. International Biodeterioration and Biodegradation 119: 111-117 (2017).
  30. Biosorption and equilibrium isotherms study of cadmium removal by Nostoc muscorum Meg 1: morphological, physiological and biochemical alterations Rabbul I. A. Ahad, Mayashree B Syiem. 3Biotechnology, 7: 104-115 (2017)
  31. Zn2+ sequestration by Nostoc muscorum: Study of thermodynamics, equilibrium isotherms and biosorption parameters for the metal. Omega L. Diengdoh, Mayashree B Syiem, K. Paskirajan, Amar N Rai. Environmental Monitoring and Assessment. 189:314- 327(2017).
  32. Dose dependent variance in UV-C radiation induced effects on carbon and nitrogen metabolism in the cyanobacterium Nostoc muscorum Meg 1 T. Phukan, A.N. Rai and M.B. Syiem. Ecotoxicology and Environmental Safety 2018, 155: 171-179 (2018).
  33. Expression of copper toxicity in the rice-field cyanobacterium Anabaena oryzae Ind4. S. Goswami, R.I.A. Ahad and M.B Syiem.  Eurasia Journal of Biosciences 13(1): 57-67 (2019).
  34. Unstandardized UV-C dose used for killing harmful cyanobacteria may instead initiate accelerated growth in the target organisms. Phukan, T. Rai, A. N. and M. B. Syiem   Ecotoxicology and Environmental Safety 181 274–283 (2019).
  35. Modulation of oxidant and antioxidant homeostasis in the cyanobacterium Nostoc muscorum Meg1 under UV-C radiation stress. T. Phukan, A. N Rai, and M. B. Syiem Aquatic Toxicology 213 105228. (2019).


  1. Nitrogen Metabolism in Cyanobacteria (2009).  Mayashree B Syiem, Arvind K Singh and Amar N Rai. In the book "Algal Biology and Biotechnology" Editors: JIS Khattar, DP Singh and Gurpreet Kaur, Punjabi University, Patiala. Page nos. 81-96.I K International Publishing House Pvt. Ltd. (New Delhi).
  2. Cyanobacteria in symbiosis: cellular responses (2013). Mayashree B Syiem, Amar Nath Rai. In the book “Stress biology of cyanobacteria”. Editors: Ashish Kumar Srivastava, Amar Nath Rai and Brett A. Neilan. Page nos. 257-272. CRC Press, Taylor & Francis Group.
  3. N2-fixing cyanobacterial systems as biofertilizer (2017). Mayashree.B Syiem, A.K. Singh, A.N. Rai In: Agro-Environmental SustainabilityVol. I: Managing Crop Health. J.S. Singh and G. Senevirante (. Eds.). Springer International Publishing AG. ISBN: 978-3-319-49724-2. p. 43-61.
  4. Rai, A. N., Singh, A. K. and Syiem, M. B. Plant growth-promoting abilities of cyanobacteria. In: Cyanobacteria from Basic Science to Applications 2019, (A. k. Mishra, D. N. Tiwari, A. N. Rai eds.), pp 459-476, Elsevier Academic Press AP. [ISBN: 978-0-12-814667-5].


  1. Laboratory Safety Guidelines. (2004). Authors: A. N. Rai and Mayashree. B. Syiem. By NEHU Publications.