About me

I am currently a Reader in Translational Physiology at the University of Westminster.

I am a graduate in pharmaceutical sciences from the University of Mumbai, India. I began my academic studies in the UK with an MSc in Drug Delivery at the UCL School of Pharmacy, graduating with a distinction. My PhD studies (Diabetes and Metabolic Medicine) were conducted under a Diabetes UK studentship award at the Centre for Diabetes, Barts and The London School of Medicine and Dentistry, Queen Mary, University of London.

I have broad interests in academic research as well as research enterprise and commercialisation. General areas of interest are:

Appetite regulation and satiety - role of specific dietary components and the underlying mechanism

Mechanisms of Type 2 diabetes at the beta-cell level

Nanotechnology based targeted drug/nutraceutical formulation and delivery

Applicants who are interested in PhD or shorter undergraduate and postgraduate level research projects in the above fields are welcome to get in touch.


I began my teaching at the University of Westminster, where I successfully completed a PgCertSSSL course to acquire key teaching and learning skills. As a lecturer at the University of Bedforshire I was the Unit/Module Leader for Cell & Molecular Biology and Molecular Biology units, teaching and mentoring undergraduate as well as postgraduate students.

I have proactively developed innovative teaching resources and material, and am strongly committed to fostering enterprise and employability skills in the students.

I enjoy teaching a range of subjects at various levels and strive to utilise my training in project management and leadership in the context of pedagogy. I have a profound interest in research-led teaching; I proactively integrate current research data in my lectures and tutorials.


I have broad interests in academic research as well as research enterprise. My areas of focus are:

Appetite regulation/obesity

Mechanisms of Type 2 diabetes

Nanotechnology based targeted drug/nutraceutical formulation and delivery

Current projects include research in the role of iron mediated oxidative stress on pancreatic cell insulin secretory dysfunction in Type 2 diabetes.

I have previously investigated the effects of specific dietary nutrients on the release and secretion of the appetite regulating peptide YY using a human gut cell model - Caco-2 transwell system (Society for endocrinology Early Career Grant). Continued research investigations in this area may provide interesting insights in the dynamics of satiety, appetite regulation and obesity.

My past research commercialisation projects include a Knowledge Transfer Partnership (KTP) project that resulted in the development of a novel iron supplement product currently being marketed worldwide, and a Project for Accessible Research Knowledge (PARK) project where I developed an innovative nanotechnology based 'Micronutrient Delivery Platform' for targeted delivery of mineral nutrients to the gut to achieve high absorption.

I am also involved in the design and formulation of biodegradable nano sized carriers for site specific and controlled delivery of drugs, bioactive peptides, micronutrients and phytochemicals. I use a nanotechnology based approach in combination with the Caco-2 cell absorption screening model that has wide applications in the pharmaceutical and nutraceutical fields.

Research papers

Zupančič S, Zariwala MG, Renshaw D, Kocbek P, Somavarapu S. Design and Development of Novel Mitochondrial Targeted Nanocarriers, DQAsomes for Curcumin Inhalation. Molecular Pharmaceutics. 2014 Jul ;11 (7):2334-45.

Zariwala MG, Farnaud S, Merchant Z, Somavarapu S, Renshaw D. Ascorbyl Palmitate/DSPE-PEG nanocarriers for oral iron delivery: preparation, characterization and in vitro evaluation. Colloids and Surfaces: B. 2014 March. (115): 86-92.

Zariwala MG, Farnaud S, Elsaid N, Somavarapu S, Renshaw D. A Novel approach to oral iron delivery using ferrous sulphate solid lipid particles. International Journal of Pharmaceutics. 2013 November; 456(2):400-7

Zariwala MG, Somavarapu S, Farnaud S, Renshaw D. Comparison study of iron preparations using a human intestinal model. Scientia Pharmaceutica. 2013 December; 81(4):1123 - 1139

Kosicka A, Cunliffe AD, Mackenzie R, Zariwala MG, Perretti M, Flower RJ, Renshaw D (2013). Attenuation of plasma annexin A1 in human obesity. FASEB J. January 2013. 27(1):368-78

Fowkes RC, Moradi-Bidhendi N, Branceleone V, Zariwala MG, Brady D, Jessop DS, Perretti M, Renshaw D (2013). Annexin-A1 protein and its relationship to cortisol in human saliva. Psychoneuroendocrinology. 2013 May; 38 (5):722-7. Epub 2012 Sep 25

Holness MJ, Zariwala MG, Walker CG, Sugden MC. Adipocyte pyruvate dehydrogenase kinase 4 expression is associated with augmented PPARγ upregulation in early-life programming of later obesity. Febs Open Bio. 2012 March; 5;2:32-6

Sugden MC, Zariwala MG, Holness MJ. PPARs and the orchestration of metabolic fuel selection. Pharmacol Res. 2009 Sep; 60(3):141-50.

Pandit S, Cevher E, Zariwala MG, Somavarapu S, Alpar HO. Enhancement of immune response of HBsAg loaded poly (L-lactic acid) microspheres against hepatitis B through incorporation of alum and chitosan. J Microencapsul. 2007 Sep; 24(6):539-52.

Walker CG, Zariwala MG, Holness MJ, Sugden MC (2006) Diet, Obesity and Diabetes: a Current Update. Clin Sci (Lond). 2007 Feb; 112(2):93-111.

Novel mitochondrial targeted nanocarriers, DQAsomes, for targeted delivery of the antioxidant curcumin to the cellular mitochondria in the lung for therapy of conditions such as lung cancer and other pulmonary diseases. Molecular Pharmaceutics. 2014 Jul; 11(7):2334-45.

Ferrous iron containing solid lipid nanoparticles that have high absorption in the gut cells (Caco-2) and have applications as iron supplements for anaemia. International Journal of Pharmaceutics. 2013 November; 456(2):400-7

Concentrations of the anti-inflammatory peptide Annexin A1 inversely correlate with BMI, total percentage body fat, and waist-to-hip ratio in humans. Annexin A1 reduction during obesity may thus play a role in the progression to type 2 diabetes and cardiovascular disease. FASEB J. January 2013. 27(1):368-78

Conference publications

Fabrication and characterization of novel hydrophobically modified chitosan nanoliposomes for oral iron delivery. Zariwala MG, Bendre H, Markiv A, Farnaud S and Somavarapu S, Renshaw D. European Iron Club 2014, Verona, Italy.

Serum ferritin levels are correlated with total adiposity, but not BMI in obese males. Zariwala MG, Kosicka A, Mackenzie R & Renshaw D. Endocrine Abstracts (2014) 34 P255. DOI:10.1530/endoabs.34.P255. Society for Endocrinology BES 2012, Mar 2014, Liverpool, UK.

Zupancic S, Kocbek P, Kristl, J, Zariwala MG, Renshaw D, Gul MO, Elsaid Z, Taylor KMG, Somavarapu S. Formulation and characterization of curcumin loaded DQAsomes for pulmonary delivery. V: 10th International Conference and Workshop on Biological Barriers, 16 - 21 February 2014: Saarbrücken: [s. n.], 2014, str. 127.

Hepcidin transcription and peptide secretion are governed by different regulatory mechanisms. Mehta K, Patel V, Busbridge M, Renshaw D, Zariwala MG, Evans RW and Farnaud S. Am J Hematol. Vol. 88 Issue 5, 2013, May.

Preparation and Characterisation of Solid Lipid Particles for Oral Iron Delivery. Zariwala MG, Farnaud S, Somavarapu S, Renhaw D. Am J Hematol. Vol. 88 Issue 5, 2013, May.

Macronutrient regulation of PYY and DPPIV in human intestinal epithelial cells. Zariwala MG, Kosicka A and Renshaw D. Endocrine Society annual meeting 2013, San Francisco, USA.

Annexin A1, an anti-inflammatory regulator, is expressed in human adipocytes. Kosicka-Knox A, Cunliffe A, Mackenzie R, Zariwala M & Renshaw D. Endocrine Abstracts (2012) 28 P193

Ac 2-26, an annexin A1-derived peptide, reduces inflammation in human SGBS adipocytes after hypoxia treatment. Kosicka-Knox A, Cunliffe A, Mackenzie R, Zariwala M & Renshaw D. Endocrine Abstracts (2012) 29 P1172, 15th International & 14th European Congress of Endocrinology, Florence, Italy.

DPPIV and macronutrients regulate the expression of PYY3-36 in human gut epithelial cells. Kosicka A, Renshaw D & Zariwala MG. Endocrine Abstracts (2013) 31 P197 DOI:10.1530/endoabs.31.P197. Society for Endocrinology BES 2012, Mar 2012, Harrogate, UK.

Comparison of iron absorption from iron supplement preparations using an in vitro Caco-2 model. Zariwala MG, Farnaud S and Renshaw D. European Iron Club annual meeting (2012) Rennes, France.

Increased transferrin-bound iron uptake in HepG2 cells is followed by an increase in expression of the iron hormone hepcidin pre-and post-translationally. Mehta K, Patel V, Busbridge M, Renshaw D, Zariwala MG, Evans RW and Farnaud S. European Iron Club annual meeting (2012), Rennes, France.