Dr. Islam has been working as a Postdoctoral Research Scholar in the Genetics Department at Stanford University under the supervision of Dr. Lars Steinmetz, and is also affiliated with the Stanford Genome Technology Center. His research is focused on method development at the single-cell level to work with transcriptomics and challenging cells such as single yeast cells and naïve T cells. Since 2014, Dr. Islam has been studying NGLY1 Deficiency, which is a rare genetic disease caused by a defect in N-glycanase that is associated with abnormal accumulation of misfolded glycoproteins, with no treatment options available. Dr. Islam is involved in multiomics analysis to define molecular intervention points, especially in screening for chemical and genetic strategies that may influence the NGLY1 disease state.
In his Ph.D. in the Department of Medical Biochemistry and Biophysics of the Karolinska Institutet, Sweden, he was one of the pioneers in the development of single-cell transcriptomics methods, which established new and highly effective methods to determine the transcriptome of single-cells. He also led the development of the first method that revealed transcriptome heterogeneity in complex tissues, at the single-cell level, which could help to distinguish among different cell types.
Dr. Islam also developed the first method to count single molecules at the single-cell level by utilizing Unique Molecular Identifier (UMI) based technology, which minimizes the noise in single-cell transcriptomics using molecular barcodes. Before he moved to Stockholm, Dr. Islam worked as an Assistant Professor at the University of Chittagong, Bangladesh, for 2 years. He received his Master degree in Biochemistry and Molecular Biology at Uppsala University, Sweden and his undergraduate degree from Dhaka University, Bangladesh.