OxCam Student Profiles - Class of 2014
Track 1 MD/PhD starting PhD Training Phase
Wellcome Trust Scholars
Thomas Reid Alderson
NIH Oxford Scholar
Mentors: Dr. Adriaan Bax (NIDDK) & Drs. Justin Benesch and Andrew Baldwin (Oxford)
Degrees: University of Wisconsin, Madison, B.S. Biochemistry, 2014
Research Interests: Structural biology, protein NMR, intrinsically disordered proteins, neurodegenerative diseases, molecular chaperones
Reid graduated with honors from the University of Wisconsin–Madison in May of 2014 and achieved a B.S. in Biochemistry with accompanying minors in Mathematics and Physics. For three years, Reid conducted research in the laboratory of Prof. John Markley at the National Magnetic Resonance Facility at Madison (NMRFAM). Reid’s project focused on the application of in vitro biochemistry and multidimensional, solution-state nuclear magnetic resonance (NMR) spectroscopy to functionally and structurally characterize a specialized heat shock 70 kDa protein (Hsp70; HscA) involved in Fe-S cluster biogenesis inE. coli. Results from his work in Prof. Markley’s lab were published in Biochemistry, Journal of the American Chemical Society, and Biochimica et Biophysica Acta.
Following his interests in intrinsically disordered proteins (IDPs), Reid wrote a review article that analyzed the controversial structure of alpha-synculein, an IDP that is implicated in the onset of Parkinson’s disease. This review was published in the inaugural issue of Intrinsically Disordered Proteins and recommended by the Faculty of 1000 – a post-publication review committee in the biomedical sciences.
As an NIH-Oxford Scholar, Reid will apply solution- and solid-state NMR spectroscopy, native mass spectrometry, and computational and other biophysical methods to investigate the structural and dynamical biophysics of molecular chaperone complexes, IDPs, and their roles in protein misfolding diseases. He is co-supervised by Profs. Andy Baldwin and Justin Benesch at the University and by Dr. Ad Bax at the NIH (NIDDK).
NIH York Scholar
Mentors: Dr. Stephen Alasdair (NIAMS) & Prof. Fred Anston (York)
Degrees: University of York, M.Chem. in Chemistry, 2014
Research Interests: Structural biology, Virus assembly, Inorganic chemistry
Oliver graduated with distinction from the University of York in 2014, with a Masters of Chemistry (Hons) degree accredited by the Royal Society of Chemistry, UK. Here he was awarded The Margaret Bishop prize for the highest standard of a Chemistry masters thesis in his graduation year.
He began his research career in 2010 through an EPSRC and Department of Chemistry funded research program, assistant to Professor Fred Antson of York Structural Biology Laboratory. He began studying the translocation of double-stranded DNA into bacteriophage capsids. Work in this lab resulted in a first author publication, and he continued this line of research for his masters studies, detailing the structure-function relationships of a virus portal protein common to bacteriophage and herpesviruses. This led to several international presentations on virus structure and assembly. It was here he became acquainted with Dr Alasdair Steven, head of the Laboratory of Structural Biology Research (LSBR) at NIH. A successful application between Oliver and Dr's Steven and Antson saw Oliver’s appointment as a Predoctoral Fellow at LSBR in 2015. His focus is on the fundamental and translational research of virus and virus-like particle assembly. Such protein compartments are tens to hundreds of nanometers in diameter and package enzymes, nucleic acids, and mineral cargos. His structure-guided investigation focuses on bacterial nanocompartments (encapsulins) of and their evolutionarily related counterparts bacteriophage capsids. Through this he continues to develop his career as an interdisciplinary researcher, and his skill set as a structural biologist in X-ray crystallography and electron microscopy.
NIH Cambridge Scholar
Mentors: Dr. Robert Best (NIDDK) & Prof. Tuomas Knowles (Cambridge)
Degrees: University of Arkansas, B.S. Honors Biophysics, B.S. Biophysical Chemistry, 2014
Research Interests: Molecular biophysics, biophysical chemistry, kinetics and thermodynamics of macromolecules, protein folding and misfolding, protein dynamics
Mathias graduated from the University of Arkansas in 2014 with dual majors in Biophysics and Biophysical Chemistry and minors in Mathematics and Spanish. In his freshman year he was introduced to research by working with Dr. Eitan Gross on the role of cholesterol superlattices in atherosclerosis. That summer he participated in Arkansas’s Howard Hughes Medical Institute Undergraduate Research Studio working with Dr. Daniel Fologea on liposomal drug delivery. The goal of the project was targeted chemotherapy by functionalizing liposome surfaces with the synthetic peptide anginex, which has been shown to bind to galectin-1, a protein expressed in the angiogenic stages of tumor metastasis. Then in his sophomore year, he joined the lab of Dr. Gregory Salamo and since then has been examining the response of the lysenin protein to light. Lysenin is a pore-forming protein expressed in the gut of a certain earthworm and has been determined to be a new optically active protein. Mathias spent his junior year studying physics and physical/theoretical chemistry abroad at the University of Cambridge and looks forward to returning to the UK for graduate school. As an NIH-OxCam Scholar, he plans on examining the process of amyloid fibril formation inherent to neurodegenerative diseases such as Alzheimer’s or Parkinson’s with the hopes of understanding the pathogenesis and finding effective means of inhibition.
NIH Oxford Scholar
Mentors: Dr. Lisa Cunningham (NIDCD) & Prof. Matthew Wood (Oxford)
Degrees: Boston College, B.S. Biology & minor in Chemistry, 2010, Medical student at Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai
Research Interests: Hearing & Deafness, Neuroscience, Targeted Drug Delivery, Biopharmaceuticals
Andrew Breglio joined the NIH Oxford-Cambridge Scholars Program as an MD/PhD candidate in 2014. He is a 2010 summa cum laudegraduate of Boston College with a B.S. in Biology. As an undergraduate, Andrew conducted research under the direction of Dr. Daniel Kirschner characterizing the structure of central nervous system myelin and spent summers as an Undergraduate Research Fellow at the University of Connecticut Health Center, where he worked with Dr. Lisa Conti to examine the role of central nervous system stress hormone receptors. Andrew went on to matriculate at the Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai. As a medical student he worked under the direction of Dr. Joanna Chikwe to research improvement of surgical approaches and operative risk assessment for patients undergoing cardiac surgery. In 2011 he was awarded a Patient Research in Science and Medicine fellowship from Mount Sinai to continue this work. Following his third year of medical school, Andrew was selected for a National Institutes of Health, Medical Research Scholars Program (MRSP) fellowship to conduct research at the NIH intramural campus. As an MRSP fellow, he joined the laboratory of Dr. Lisa Cunningham within the National Institute on Deafness and Other Communication Disorders and worked to develop a clinical therapy aimed at preventing chemotherapy-induced hearing loss. Now an NIH-Oxford graduate student, Andrew is examining mechanisms of clinically-induced hearing loss and is exploring methods of preventing this acquired hearing loss. His interests lie in treating deafness and hearing loss and the development of novel methods of drug delivery. Following completion of the dual degree program, Andrew hopes to address hearing loss and deafness both in the clinic and laboratory as an otolaryngology surgeon-scientist.
NIH Oxford Scholar
Mentors: Dr. Craig Thomas (NCATS),
Prof. Katja Simon (Oxford), &
Prof. David Roberts (Oxford)
Degrees: McGill University, B.Sc. Ecological Determinants of Health & minor in Classics, 2009; Medical student at Penn State College
of Medicine (in progress)
Research Interests: Tropical Medicine, Immunology, Parasitology
Kimberly Breglio is a Massachusetts native who graduated with Great Distinction from McGill University in 2009 with a B.Sc. degree in Ecological Determinants of Health and a Minor in Classics. During her undergraduate summers, Kimberly worked at Brigham and Women’s Hospital in the lab of Dr. David Soybel, researching the role of zinc in the acidification of lysosomes in murine macrophages. Following graduation, Kimberly moved to Iquitos, Peru to study the immunology of malaria in pregnancy with Dr. OraLee Branch of New York University and the Universidad Nacional de la Amazonia Peruana.
In 2010, Kimberly matriculated at Penn State College of Medicine, where she has completed three years of medical school. Kimberly was selected for the Global Health Scholars Program and traveled to Ecuador for a short-term pediatric nutrition project. She also worked as an intern at the Pan-American Health Organization (PAHO), researching water, sanitation, and hygiene in Iquitos, Peru. She has since been working with Dr. David Craft to found the Iquitos research site for the Global Health Scholars Program, and was awarded the 2012 Community Service Award at Milton S. Hershey Medical Center for her efforts. Following her third year, Kimberly came to the National Institutes of Health for a Medical Research Scholars Program fellowship, where she worked under Dr. Irini Sereti and Dr. Kenneth Olivier in the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases. Her project examined the clinical and immunologic characteristics of HIV infected patients who developed Mycobacterium avium complex (MAC) infections.
Kimberly is the Co-Founder and Director of US Operations of Kuska Peru, a non-profit organization that provides scholarships for impoverished students in the Peruvian Amazon. She is an active member of the American Medical Women’s Association (AMWA), serving as their National Global Health Chair from 2012-2013. She currently serves as the National Student Chair for the American Women’s Hospital Services (AWHS).
As a student in the NIH-Oxford-Cambridge Scholars Program, Kimberly is excited to study parasitology and join the effort to eradicate globally important pathogens. She hopes to pursue a career as a physician scientist studying dermatologic manifestations of tropical diseases.
NIH Oxford Scholar
Mentors: Dr. Todd Macfarlan (NICHD) & Dr. Lothar Schermelleh (University of Oxford)
Degrees: University of Chicago, B.A. Biological Sciences, 2011
Research Interests: Epigenetics, Advanced Light Microscopy, Chromatin Architecture, Genome Organization
Justin Demmerle graduated from The University of Chicago in 2011 with a B.A. in Biological Sciences, a concentration in Molecular and Cell Biology, and both general and departmental honors. He became fascinated with the spatiotemporal organization and function of the genome as student of Dr. James Shapiro, and started working in the lab of Dr. Harinder Singh in 2009. After working on optimization of live-cell imaging techniques to visualize genome interactions with the nuclear lamina, he developed a taste for fluorescent in-situ hybridization experiments and the outer reaches of the nuclear periphery. In 2010 he moved to the lab of Dr. James Holaska, where he studied the role of the inner nuclear membrane protein emerin in regulating genome organization, chromatin architecture, and gene expression in a model of X-linked Emery-Dreifuss Muscular Dystrophy. This project resulted in a new model for control of gene expression in muscle differentiation by repressing chromatin at the nuclear periphery, and a potential avenue for treatment by targeting an epigenetic modifier with a small molecule. Justin’s time in the Holaska Lab generated an undergraduate honors thesis in 2011, presentations at regional and national conferences, and first-author publications in the Journal of Biological Chemistry in 2012 and Chromosome Research in 2013.
Seeking to combine his interest in higher-order genome structure and function with advanced light microscopy techniques, Justin moved to the UK at the beginning of 2013 to work as a research assistant at the University of Oxford with Dr. Lothar Schermelleh. There he became proficient in applying super-resolution light microscopy to the architecture of the nucleus, and has contributed work published in the journals PNAS and Epigenetics and Chromatin. He is currently writing protocols for structured illumination microscopy, continuing to study chromatin architecture with innovative imaging technologies, and learning the finer points of managing an effective and collaborative lab.
As an NIH Oxford Scholar, Justin will focus on integrating advanced light microscopy with next-generation sequencing and biochemical techniques to interrogate spatiotemporal chromatin architecture and dynamics during mammalian development. He plans to study stem cell differentiation events and wants to create a model for multi-disciplinary analysis of epigenetic changes. His great hope is that understanding the four-dimensional higher-order structure of the genome will lead to both innovative therapies and new paradigms of how biological information is manifested, transmitted, and viewed by the layman.
NIH Gates-Cambridge Scholar
Mentors: Dr. Steven Jacobson (NINDS) & Dr. Franklin Aigbirhio (Cambridge)
Degrees: Duke University, B.S. Chemistry, 2011; Medical Student at University System of Georgia (in progress)
Research Interests: Autoimmunity, neurodegeneration, multiple sclerosis, neuroimaging
Irene graduated in 2011 from Duke University with a B.S. in Chemistry and a concentration in Biochemistry. While at Duke, Irene worked in the lab of Dr. Michael Fitzgerald, PhD, where she studied the use of mass spectrometry for the measurement of protein stability and the detection of protein-binding interactions in complex multi-protein mixtures. This work contributed to a publication in Analytical Chemistry, as well as several conference presentations and an undergraduate thesis awarded with distinction. She was especially drawn to this field for its application in the detection of off-target drug interactions, which centered on the study of commonly used immunosuppressants and led her to develop an interest in immunosuppression. Wishing to gain further experience in biomedical research after graduating, she joined the Translational Interventional Radiology Lab at Duke Medical Center, where she studied the use of bacteriophage prophylaxis in the prevention of intravenous catheter infections.
The following year, she entered the MD/PhD program of the University System of Georgia, where her interest in immunosuppression led her to the Babensee lab, a Georgia Tech lab studying the application of immunomodulatory biomaterials in the regulation of dendritic cell phenotype and the treatment of autoimmune disease. The rotation resulted in the development of proposal exploring the immunomodulatory targeting of neuroantigen presentation and auto-reactive T cell activation in a murine model of experimental autoimmune encephalomyelitis (EAE), the dominant animal model of multiple sclerosis (MS). This ultimately became the basis of a multi-institutional grant submitted in partnership with Emory and Morehouse, which was subsequently funded by the Atlanta Clinical & Translational Science Institute. Seeking to integrate her interest in imaging with her growing interest in autoimmunity, Irene plans to study imaging modalities for the detection and monitoring of neuroinflammatory changes in MS in the labs of Dr. Steven Jacobson, PhD, and Dr. Franklin Aigbirhio, PhD.
As a medical student, Irene is also interested in exploring means of medical service outreach. In her second year of medical school, she initiated a service project for the collection and distribution of medical supply surplus to local clinics and service groups. In one year, this initiative has produced a supply donation valued at over a half million dollars and continues to seek new avenues of outreach.
NIH Oxford Scholar
Mentors: Dr. Laura Koehly (NHGRI) & Prof. Felix Reed-Tsochas (Oxford)
Degrees: Franklin and Marshall College, B.S. Biochemistry & minor in Applied Mathematics, 2008; Harvard School of Public Health, M.S., Epidemiology, 2010
Research Interests: AIDS, Social Networks, Epidemiology, Causal Inference, Risk Factors for Disease
Jeff graduated summa cum laude from Franklin and Marshall College in 2008 with a major in Biochemistry and a minor in Applied Mathematics as a member of Phi Beta Kappa. His thesis during this time detailed the effects of inserting unnatural amino acids into a protein used in certain cancer treatments, finding that the new protein was able to produce the preferred stereoisomer in a ratio of 9:1 as opposed to the standard protein in a ratio of 1:1. He also served as a TA for multiple courses as well as a tutor in calculus, instilling a love of teaching in him, which he plans to use in his future career. Starting in his senior year of high school and throughout his undergraduate career, he worked with Professor Gerald McGwin at the University of Alabama at Birmingham on a variety of nutrition, environmental, and injury epidemiological questions. Jeff also spent a summer at Boston University for the Summer Institute for Training in Biostatistics.
Following his graduation, Jeff attended the Harvard School of Public Health for a two year Master’s of Science in epidemiology. During this time, he worked as a research assistant to Professor Mary Kay Smith-Fawzi on a behavioral intervention among persons living with HIV and their Network Members, working on everything from literature searches, to analyses, to manuscript preparation. His Master’s thesis involves an analysis of the social network characteristics and spillover effects of the intervention. Using this background of biomedical science and epidemiology, Jeff plans to pursue research in the field of social networks as they pertain to risk communication and dissemination among family members, working with Dr. Laura Koehly at the NHGRI. He is also interested in potentially pursuing research in the merging of spatial and social networks methods, as they both rely on matrices to define neighbors, except one does so in physical space, and the other in social space.
NIH Cambridge Scholar
Mentors: Dr. Robert Balaban (NHLBI) &
Dr. Yan Yan Shery Huang (Cambridge)
Degrees: University of Michigan, B.S. Mechanical Engineering, 2012; Medical student at Washington University Medical School, St. Louis (in progress)
Research Interests: Biomedical engineering, Tissue regeneration
Keval Patel graduated in 2012 with a Bachelor’s in Mechanical Engineering from the University of Michigan. During his time at Michigan, he performed research on nanotube self-assembly with Dr. Anastasios Hart, and reperfusion injury with Dr. Benedict Lucchesi. During his senior year, Keval combined his passions for both medicine and engineering by participating in the Global Health Design program. He along with 2 other engineering students performed a needs assessment in rural Ghana and developed a novel assisted delivery device that could be used in obstructed labor. The device aims to meet an important need in the providing of maternal health care in resource limited settings. After graduating, Keval attended Washington University Medical School in St. Louis as an MD/PhD student (the Ph.D. portion will be completed through the NIH Oxford Cambridge Scholar’s Program). As an NIH OxCam scholar, Keval intends to study the vascular development of liver and placenta with Dr. Michelle Oyen at Cambridge and Dr. Robert Balaban at NIH.
Keval’s career ambitions stem from his interests in engineering and medicine and his passion for design. He is interested in biomedical device development as well as physiologic modeling. His greatest ambition is to apply his combined background to the advancement of human space exploration, and perhaps travel to space himself.
NIH Cambridge Scholar
Mentors: Dr. Herb Geller (NHLBI) & Prof. Keith Martin (Cambridge)
Degrees: Michigan State University, B.S. Neuroscience, Biochemistry and Molecular Biology, 2013
Research Interests: Clinical neuroscience, Neuroscience, Drug delivery, Disease treatment
Craig Pearson graduated from Michigan State University in 2013 with degrees in Neuroscience, Biochemistry and Molecular Biology, and English. A National Merit Scholar, Criag attended Michigan State on the Alumni Distinguished Scholarship. Through an MSU Honors College first-year research program, he served as a Professorial Assistant to Dr. Melissa Baumann, where he engaged in biomedical engineering research on the effects of microcracks in synthetic bone implants. Craig went on to join an interdisciplinary research team investigating a new drug delivery treatment system for Leber Congenital Amaurosis, an early-onset genetic blindness disorder. Under the mentorship of several professors from both MSU and the University of Michigan, he studied the release kinetics of 9-cis-retinal from the bioresorbable polymer poly(lactide-co-glycolide) (PLGA). This work led to presentations at conferences both within MSU and nationally, as well as a summer REU in the College of Engineering at Michigan State. In his sophomore year, Craig was named a Goldwater Scholar, and he has since been granted membership to Phi Beta Kappa, was recognized with the Richard Lee Featherstone Endowed Prize for outstanding graduating seniors, and was recently awarded a Marshall Scholarship to pursue doctoral studies at the University of Cambridge. Craig first studied at Cambridge in the summer of 2012, where he arranged a collaborative research partnership with the lab of Dr. Serena Best, while concurrently taking English Literature courses at the university with a focus on Jane Austen and William Shakespeare. Craig’s’s cross-disciplinary interests have led him to take on a leadership role in the new Digital Humanities and Literary Cognition lab at Michigan State alongside Dr. Natalie Phillips, in addition to engaging in editorial work as the student managing editor of ReCUR, the undergraduate research journal run by MSU’s Honors College, contributing to The State News, and establishing Exceptions, a literary and creative arts journal that publishes work by students with visual disabilities. Craig has volunteered with the Neurology and Ophthalmology unit at the MSU Clinical Center, and his career goal is to develop new clinical treatments for blindness and visual impairments. Upon completion of his PhD, Craig plans to attend medical school and earn an MD. He hopes to someday operate a laboratory at a major university or teaching hospital, seeking cures and engaging in outreach within the blind community.
NIH Gates-Cambridge Scholar
Mentors: Dr. Thomas Wynn (NIAID) & Dr. Ludovic Vallier (Cambridge)
Degrees: University of North Carolina at Charlotte, B.S. Biology and Psychology & minor in Chemistry, 2012; Medical student at University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill (in progress)
Research Interests: Stem Cell Biology and Regenerative Medicine
Casey Rimland graduated magna cum laude from the University of North Carolina at Charlotte with a B.S. in Biology and Psychology and a minor in Chemistry in May 2012. She undertook two honors theses, graduating with dual honors in Biology and Psychology and was a member of the University Honors program. Casey spent her first four years at UNC-Charlotte as a C.C. Cameron Merit Scholar and was awarded a Goldwater Scholarship her fifth year, making her the first student ever from UNC-Charlotte to receive a national scholarship.
While at UNC-Charlotte, Casey undertook a wide-array of research projects and developed a true appreciation for multi-disciplinary and translational research. Her interest in pursuing a clinical and research career began in the lab of Dr. George Demakis in the department of psychology. During this time, her project focused on the epidemiology of traumatic brain injury and determined the reasons why people often do not seek treatment for these injuries. This work resulted in a second author publication in the Archives of Clinical Neuropsychology. She also pursued an honors thesis with Dr. Demakis, focusing on identifying personality traits that influence malingering ability. This work also resulted in a second author publication in Applied Neuropsychology: Adult.
For her honors thesis in Biology she worked in the lab of Dr. Julie Goodliffe researching the role that an oncogene, Myc, plays in histone gene transcription and processing in Drosophila Melanogaster. She also spent a semester working in the Chemistry department in the lab of Dr. Daniel Jones, where she worked on x-ray crystallography. During this brief time, she was able to produce a second author publication in Acta Crystallography.
Casey also participated in two prestigious summer research fellowships as an undergraduate, one was an International REU program at the Universidade Estadual de Campinas, in Brazil, where, in the lab of Dr. Anita Marsaioli, she worked on a clinical trial researching the effect of weight loss medications on the biochemical lipid profile of patient blood samples. Her work was published in the Journal of the Brazilian Chemical Society. The other was as a summer scholar at the Wake Forest Institute for Regenerative Medicine. It was during this 10-week program that Casey found her true research calling while working on a stem cell biology project with Dr. Patricia Wilson.
Casey has spent the last two years at UNC-Chapel Hill completing her pre-clinical medical school course work with the support of the UNC MSTP program and its director Dr. Eugene Orringer. She has become involved in many of the student run free clinics and even co-founded a Regenerative Medicine Society within the medical school.
Her Ph.D. research will allow her to continue to develop her passion for international and multi-disciplinary collaboration as well as translational research. While at Cambridge, she will work with Dr. Ludovic Vallier in the Anne McLaren Laboratory for Regenerative Medicine to develop novel differentiation techniques for induced pluripotent stem cell derived hepatocytes. Then at the NIH she will use these stem cell derived hepatocytes to develop cell therapies for Schistosoma Mansoni induced Liver Fibrosis in the laboratory of Dr. Thomas Wynn in the NIAID.
After completing her MD/PhD training, Casey plans to pursue a research-track residency possibly in Internal Medicine or Neurology. Ultimately she plans to work as an academic physician with a focus on translating regenerative medicine and stem cell biology research into clinical therapies
Juan Pablo Ruiz
HHMI Gilliam Scholar
NIH Oxford Scholar
Mentors: Dr. Andre Larochelle (NHLBI) & Prof. Catherine Porcher (Oxford)
Degrees: University of Miami, B.Sc. in Biomedical Engineering and English, 2013
Research Interests: Stem cell research
Juan Pablo Ruiz was born in Mexico and lived there until he was nine years old. He graduated Summa Cum Laude from the University of Miami (UM) with a BSc double major in Biomedical Engineering and English (Creative Writing Concentration). He began his research career as a freshman at UM in Dr. Herman Cheung’s stem cell and tissue engineering lab. In collaboration with Dr. Noel Ziebarth’s Atomic Force Microscopy (AFM) lab, he studied the effect that nicotine had on the Young’s modulus of elasticity of adult mesenchymal stem cells (MSCs). Following that, he began to study the effect that nicotine had on the differentiation potential of these same cells. Juan also designed and built a pacemaker-like bioreactor to stimulate stem cells electrically in conjunction with a mechanical stretch bioreactor already present in the lab. Both are now used to run studies on cardiomyogeneis. During two consecutive summers, Juan Pablo also did research at the Harvard Stem Cell Institute under the mentorship of Dr. Jeff Karp, studying different cell surface modification techniques to home MSCs to areas of injury and bone marrow, as well as to avoid lung entrapment during intravenous infusion. Juan Pablo spent a summer fixing biomedical equipment in Tanzanian government hospitals. It was this trip that cemented his love for Tanzania: people, culture, language and country. He deferred his 2013/14 NIH/OxCam fellowship to pursue a Fulbright in Tanzania, studying the prevalence of animal and human sleeping sickness in the Ngorongoro Crater. He did this in collaboration with the molecular lab of the Tsetse and Trypanosomiasis Research Institute (TTRI). Currently, he has published five peer-reviewed publications relating to his research on stem cells, two of which are first author papers. Juan Pablo will continue working in the stem cell field at both the NIH and Oxford, doing research in the field of hematopoietic stem cells. He is a Howard Hughes Medical Institute Gilliam Fellow.
NIH Oxford Scholar
Mentors: Dr. Chris Baker (NIMH) & Prof. Charlotte Stagg (Oxford)
Degrees: Vassar College, B.S. Neuroscience, minor in English, 2012
Research Interests: Neuroscience
Adam Steel graduated with Departmental Honors in Neuroscience and a minor sequence in English Composition from Vassar College in 2012. During his undergraduate study, he conducted research with Dr. N. Jay Bean. His work focused on the influence of posture on perceived social influence and power, as well as socialization on stress resilience. He also worked with Dr. Elisabeth Van Bockstaele at Thomas Jefferson University as a SURP scholar. There, he studied the effects of chronic alcohol exposure on corticotropin-releasing factor receptor localization in the locus coeruleus. After his undergraduate experience, he joined Dr. Eric Wassermann’s lab in the National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke, studying the neural networks that support skill acquisition with transcranial magnetic stimulation and fMRI, as well as optimizing therapeutic techniques for patients with traumatic brain injury. He has co-authored manuscripts in preparation using inhibitory transcranial theta burst stimulation to model lesions to the human motor system in healthy volunteers to assess the therapeutic benefits of feedback to motor skill learning. He is currently preparing a first-author manuscript on additional work, which used this “virtual-lesioning technique” during fMRI to examine the neurological correlates of this “virtual lesion”. He presented this work at the Nano-Symposium on Motor Learning at the Society for Neuroscience conference in San Diego in 2013 and at several local symposia at the NIH. He has also contributed to projects investigating the benefits of high-intensity exercise to cognitive functions for augmentation of physical and occupational therapy from traumatic brain injury. The experience with Eric Wassermann has led him to his current interest in the neural networks that support memory integration and consolidation, which he will pursue with Dr. Chris Baker in the National Institute of Mental Health as well as a similarly focused mentor at the University of Oxford.
NIH Cambridge Scholar
Mentors: Dr. Paul Meltzer (NCI) & Prof. Ashok Venkitaraman (Cambridge)
Degrees: Duke University, B.S. Biomedical Engineering, 2010; Medical student at University of Texas Southwestern Medical School, Dallas, TX (in progress)
Research Interests: Cancer biology, chromatin structure/biology, immunology, genomics, biochemistry
Terry Wu graduated summa cum laude from Duke University in 2010 where he majored in biomedical engineering. As an undergraduate he spent two years in the lab of Dr. Kam Leong as a Pratt Fellow studying plasmid-mediated cellular reprogramming and derivation of cardiomyocyte progenitors with the ultimate goal of their application in the mitigation of post-infarction cardiac remodeling. After graduation, Terry went on to join the lab of Dr. Louis Staudt at the NCI where he spent two years as a postbac fellow studying the role of B-cell receptor signaling in driving lymphomagenesis and survival in non-Hodgkin lymphoma. His experiences there cemented his desire to pursue a career combining his interests in clinical medicine with basic science. In 2012, Terry left the NIH to start his preclinical medical training at the University of Texas Southwestern Medical School in Dallas, TX as part of his combined MD/PhD degree track. Despite this temporary hiatus from basic bench work, Terry has maintained his interest in cancer biology from his days working in Lou’s lab. In 2014, Terry is looking forward to returning to the NIH to start his Ph.D. with the OxCam program in the lab of Dr. Paul Meltzer at the NCI where he will be exploring the mechanisms underlying the genomic instability commonly found in osteosarcoma.