Profiles

  • Fernanda Piorino

    Hi, I’m Fernanda! I’m originally from Brazil but moved to the US for college. I have always wanted to do scientific research and knew I wouldn’t be able to achieve that goal in my home country. In my free time, I enjoy playing and watching sports, working on jigsaw puzzles, and watching TV shows. I’m looking forward to connecting with other people in my field!

  • Megan McSweeney

    I am a 4th year PhD Candidate at Georgia Tech working in Mark Styczynski’s lab. My research focuses on using cell-free synthetic biology to engineer low-cost point-of-care biosensors for disease diagnostic applications. After earning my PhD, I hope to gain more research experience as a post-doctoral fellow and eventually seek a faculty position at a research university.

  • Eran Agmon

    My overarching research goal is to build integrative, multi-scale computational models of cells – from synthetic protocells, to bacteria such as E. coli, to eukaryotic cells that interact to form tissues and whole organisms. Recognizing the limitations of models that target a narrow range of behavior with a single class of mathematical representation, I develop next-generation methods that combine multi-source and multi-level data with representations of diverse biological mechanisms to build predictive models of cells as integrated wholes.

  • Nancy N. Fang

    I am a post doctoral fellow in Dr. Peter Zandstra’s lab. I am interested in using synthetic biology and spatial omic approaches to study human embryonic development processes, especially gastrulation and early blood development.

  • Aaron Rosenstein

    I am a PhD student working in the Garton Lab at the University of Toronto, interested in leveraging synthetic biology to engineer mammalian cells with novel computational and logic capabilities, specifically recording of cellular stimuli. I am also involved in hiPSC engineering, and am interested in conducting CRISPR screens in these cells as a means of uncovering genetic targets to protect astronauts on future space missions. When not busy in the lab, I enjoy skiing, hiking, and eating tacos in my spare time!

  • Tiam Heydari

    I am PhD student, working on engineering stem cells with synthetic biology toolbox. My background is in (bio) physics and now working in the department of biomedical engineering.

  • Callie Chappell

    Callie Chappell is a Ph.D. candidate in the Department of Biology at Stanford University. Callie is an ecologist and studies how genetic variation influences how ecological communities change over time. With a background in bioengineering, Callie is particularly interested in the conservation and policy impacts of gene editing wild organisms and the cascading impacts that genetic variation can have on
    ecological and evolutionary processes. Outside of the lab, Callie leads several groups that work in the intersection of science and
    society. Callie is the 2020-21 President of Stanford Science Policy Group (SSPG), a chapter of the National Science Policy Network and student organization that engages scientists with policy on the local, state, national, and international level. Callie also co-leads BioJam, an education program that collaborates with high school students and community organizations from low income communities in the Greater Bay Area of California. BioJam participants and organizers learn together about bioengineering and biodesign through the lens of culture and creativity.Callie is also a professional artist and scientific illustrator. Callie is a former Graduate Ethics Fellow with Stanford’s McCoy Center for Ethics in Society, BioFutures Fellow with the Stanford Bio Policy and Leadership in Society (Bio.Polis) Initiative, Katherine S. McCarter Policy Fellow with the Ecological Society of America, and Mirzayan Fellow with the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine

  • Joshua Atkinson

    Josh is a postdoctoral fellow in Moh El-Naggar’s lab at the University of Southern California. His research focuses on using synthetic biology and protein engineering to control electron transport in biological systems. Josh is a member of the EBRC Student and Postdoc Association Board and works as a liaison to the education working group.

  • Ying-Chiang Jeffrey Lee

    Ying-Chiang is a graduate student in the Donia Lab at Princeton University. He currently works on the capture and characterization of novel bioactive microbiome-derived peptides, particularly focusing on host-microbe interactions. The long term goal is to engineer therapeutic peptides from natural templates. Before coming to Princeton, Ying-Chiang completed his undergraduate work at Washington University in St. Louis where he worked in the Moon Lab and Virgin Lab. He then completed an MPH specializing in Global Health followed by an MEng.

  • Leah Davis

    Leah is a Biomedical Engineering Ph.D. student in the Daringer Lab at Rowan University. Her research focuses on engineering mammalian cell-based biosensors for the detection of extracellular ligands. Before starting graduate school, she received her undergraduate degree in Energy Engineering at The Pennsylvania State University, where she completed four internships and worked full-time for a year post graduation. If she’s not in the lab you can find her with her pug, Nugget.

  • Yan Zhang

    Yan is a Ph.D. candidate in the Styczynski Lab at the Georgia Institute of Technology. Her research focuses on interfacing cell-free biosensors with new materials to advance point-of-care diagnostics. Outside of research and EBRC, Yan is involved in the iGEM Mentoring Program and Women-in-STEM initiative.

  • Eric South

    Eric J. South

    As a graduate student in the Dunlop Lab at Boston University, Eric is developing optogenetic tools and feedback control strategies to improve how heterologous metabolic pathways integrate with native host cell physiologies. He is broadly interested in how synthetic biology and computer-aided techniques are being combined to accelerate the design of engineered microbes.

  • Eric Wold

    As a postdoctoral research associate in Dr. Jeffrey Tabor’s group I am learning how to blend my undergraduate studies in biotechnology with my doctoral work in medicinal chemistry and pharmacology. This effort will hopefully lead to new ideas for antimicrobial therapeutics and chemical tools for precision control of bacterial sensors. Additionally, I believe understanding the interplay between biosecurity and accessible, scalable synthetic biology is critically important, and I hope to improve my understanding through EBRC membership.

  • Xinyan Li

  • Stephen Chiu

    Current Ph.D. student in the EECE Ph.D. program of WUSTL. Interested in synthetic biology and its application in industry. Have experience in Protein expression and CRISPR/Cas9 in Bacteria and Yeast.

  • Gianna Busch

    I am a 1st year Bioengineering PhD student working in the lab of Dr. Arjun Raj at UPenn. I earned my Bachelor of Science in Biomedical Engineering from the University of Arkansas in May 2021. I completed my undergraduate honors thesis in the lab of Dr. Kyle P. Quinn.

  • Quanhui Ye

    I am Quanhui Ye, a third-year P.h.D student in the Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering at the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign. Before this, I earned my master’s degree and then worked as a research associate in the School of Environment at Tsinghua University and Southern University of Science and Technology, respectively.

  • Zachary LaTurner

    I am a native of Seattle, WA, where, growing up, I had the opportunity to explore the many beautiful environments of the Pacific Northwest. This instilled in me a respect and admiration for the environment that drives my interest in environmental engineering. As an undergraduate and post-bac at the University of Washington, I then became fascinated with microorganisms and the multitude of ways they have evolved to occupy every conceivable niche on the planet. Now at Rice University, I combine these two passions, the environment and microbiology, to develop new environmental biotechnologies.

  • Ahmad Mannan

    I graduated with an MSci in Mathematics (Imperial Collage London, UK) and PhD in Microbial Systems Biology (University of Surrey, UK), and have a passion for understanding how biological systems work through mathematical and computational approached. In particular, I am passionate about learning from the designs of genetic control systems in bacteria and developing computational models to understand how they can be repurposed and engineered as synthetic genetic control circuits for various exciting biotechnological applications.

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