Maulik grew up in India till the age of thirteen before immigrating to the US, where he attended schools in the suburbs of Chicago and then New York. He is grateful for the kindness of teachers and administrators at the Northlake Middle School and the Proviso West High School in Chicago. Like thousands of other immigrants, his parents ran a small convenience store. Their hard work made it possible for Maulik to receive higher education.
Being philosophically inclined, Maulik attended Grinnell College, a liberal arts college in rural Iowa. There, he created his own major in Cognitive Neurophilosophy, which allowed him to combine his interests in the Neurosciences and philosophy. After Grinnell, he worked as a research technician in the HHMI lab of Larry Katz at Duke, where he worked on elucidating mechanisms of pheromone-based memories in mice. He then went on to do his Ph.D. in the Neurosciences Program at Stanford University where he joined the HHMI lab of Kang Shen and studied synapse development.
Maulik’s training in genetics gave him a deep appreciation for evolution. To combine his experimental skills in genetics and cell biology with molecular evolution, he joined the HHMI lab of Harmit Malik as a Helen Hay Whitney Foundation Fellow. There, he developed a research program built around his fascination with mitochondria.
Maulik is married to a dentist – who has saved him in dental emergencies on more than one occasion! They have two sweet kids (well, one is sweet, the other one…we will see). On weekends, he can often be found hanging out with his large extended family (perhaps not always by choice?!).
Although Maulik finds admirable and inspiring qualities in many folks, he was never one to have a role model. That is, until he learned about Dolly Parton! Among her many qualities that Maulik admires is an indomitably positive outlook and sense of gratitude, self-confidence with humility, importance of commitment, wit and humor, strong work ethic, business savvy, ambition, professionalism, and respect for others.