Postdoctoral Faculty

Name Last Name Location Summary 2nd Research Area Research Area Lab Affiliation Job Title

Elaheh Ahmadzadeh, Ph.D.

Postdoctoral Associate

Farmington, CT

860-837-2474

    Ahmadzadeh Elaheh Ahmadzadeh, Ph.D. Farmington, CT
    Focuses on understanding the interplay between various immune effector cells and tumor metastasis in breast cancer.
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    Focuses on understanding the interplay between various immune effector cells and tumor metastasis in breast cancer.

    The Palucka Lab Postdoctoral Associate
    Akturk Anil Akturk, Ph.D. Bar Harbor, ME
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    The Tarchini Lab Postdoctoral Associate
    Albright Brandon Albright, Ph.D. Farmington, CT
    My goal is to use viral metagenomics to understand the complex interactions between viruses and their hosts.
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    Beginning with my undergraduate research, working on bacteriophages (bacterial viruses), I have been fascinated in the diversity and complexity of viruses. This interest led me to pursue a Ph.D. studying how Herpes Simplex Virus manipulates the intra-cellular environment to establish infection. Upon receiving my Ph.D., I served as a Postdoc at Yale University studying another human virus, JC Polyomavirus, with the goal of understanding the cellular factors that facilitated viral entry. Now at the Jackson Laboratory, I mine through large scale genomic datasets to understand the range of viruses that exist in different populations. The goal of my current work is to develop ways to examine these complex virus-host relationships and to help the field get a better understanding as to how viruses contribute to health and disease.

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    Computational Biology|Genetics and Genomics|Infectious Disease Research Computational Biology|Genetics and Genomics|Infectious Disease Research The Weinstock Lab Event Speaker|Postdoctoral Associate
    Amin Samir B Amin, MBBS, Ph.D. Farmington, CT
    Working in the comparative oncology field to study spontaneous development of glioma in Canis familiaris or dogs with emphasis on characterizing and comparing cancer genome and transcriptome to that in human glioma.
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    Dr. Amin received his Ph.D. in cancer computational biology from Baylor College of Medicine, Houston, TX in 01/2017. His thesis work was carried out at the UT MD Anderson Cancer Center, and was focused on understanding long non-coding RNA interactions in the context of chromatin organization using integrated analyses of publically available expression, epigenomic and chromatin interaction data. Before completing Ph.D., Dr. Amin received research training (2008-2011) in computational biology at the Dana-Farber Cancer Institute, Boston, MA where he worked on the assessment of gene expression profiling as predictive biomarker in multiple myeloma. Previously, Dr. Amin received his first professional degree in medicine, MBBS from the Medical College of Maharaja Sayajirao University of Baroda, Vadodara, India in 2005.

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    Bioinformatics|Computational Biology|Genetics and Genomics|Cancer Bioinformatics|Computational Biology|Genetics and Genomics|Cancer The Verhaak Lab Postdoctoral Associate
    Bhattacharyya Tanmoy Bhattacharyya, Ph.D. Bar Harbor, ME The Handel Lab Postdoctoral Associate
    Chen Yang Chen, Ph.D. Farmington, CT
    Single cell Transcriptomics, 3D Genomics
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    Postdoctoral associate: 2017-current

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    Bioinformatics|Computational Biology Bioinformatics|Computational Biology The Ouyang Lab Postdoctoral Associate
    Cortes-Perez Daniel Cortes-Perez, M.D., Ph.D. Bar Harbor, ME
    Stem cell biology and neural differentiation to study neurological diseases and aging using genetic approaches. Axonal repair, neurotrophic factors and DYRK1a are also of interest
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    After doing my Ms. Sc. studying ischemia and reperfusion in the liver and how adenosine receptors can modulate metabolic pathways during this insult; I decided to move toward stem cell and neuroscience field during my Ph. D. training. I was interested in the transgenic expression of Glial-cell line derived neurotrophic factor (GDNF) in stem cells and neuronal derivatives. GDNF-secreting embryonic stem cell differentiation to motor neurons goes through a phase of increased number of cycling motor neuron precursors, enhancing terminal differentiated motor neuron yield and electrical maturation, even without any other trophic or cellular support. My ongoing work at JAX tries to unveil the genetic basis of individual differences in the response of the central nervous system to injury using pluripotent stem cells and transgenic mice as models.

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    Genetics and Genomics|Neurodegenerative and Neuromuscular Diseases Genetics and Genomics|Neurodegenerative and Neuromuscular Diseases The Pera Lab Postdoctoral Associate
    Dickson Price Dickson, Ph.D. Bar Harbor, ME
    Integrates operant and classical conditioning paradigms with modern systems genetics techniques to identify the genetic and genomic mechanisms underlying the behavioral processes of drug addiction and related behavioral disorders.
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    I integrate operant and classical conditioning paradigms with modern systems genetics techniques to identify the genetic and genomic mechanisms underlying fundamental behavioral processes driving drug addiction and related behavioral disorders.

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    Genetics and Genomics|Computational Biology|Complex Traits|Bioinformatics Genetics and Genomics|Computational Biology|Complex Traits|Bioinformatics The Chesler Lab Postdoctoral Associate
    Dwyer Jennifer Dwyer, Ph.D. Bar Harbor, ME
    Elucidating the molecular mechanisms that underlie autoimmunity in Type 1 diabetes
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    Type 1 diabetes is the autoimmune-mediated destruction of insulin-producing pancreatic Beta-cells that leads to lifelong insulin therapy.  Using the non-obese diabetic (NOD) mouse model which succumbs to type 1 diabetes at a young age, the Serreze lab has identified Nuclear Factor kappa B inhibitor Delta (Nfkbid) as a modulator of disease incidence. Nfkbid-deficient mice demonstrate an accelerated disease onset, despite improved thymic negative selection of autoreactive T cells that is associated with decreases in regulatory T cell populations.  My research is focused on understanding molecular mechanisms by which Nfkbid influences regulatory T cell populations in an effort to ultimately develop therapies to halt the autoimmune destruction seen in Type 1 diabetes.
     

     

    Diabetes and Obesity|Immune Disorders Diabetes and Obesity|Immune Disorders The Serreze Lab Postdoctoral Associate
    Emori Chihiro Emori, Ph.D. Bar Harbor, ME Cancer|Reproductive Disorders Cancer|Reproductive Disorders The Bolcun-Filas Lab Postdoctoral Associate
    Gong Liang Gong, Ph.D. Farmington, CT
    My research interests are the single molecule long-read sequencing technologies, genomic structural variations and their contribution to the transcriptional regulation in cancer genome.
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    I received my Ph.D. in Biochemistry and Molecular Biology from Huazhong Agricultural University where I studied the genetic and biochemical bases of rice metabolome variation by an approach combined genomics, genetics and metabolomics. Previously, I received my B.S. in Biological Science at Huazhong Agricultural University. After getting my Ph.D., I joined Dr. Wei Chia-Lin’s lab at DOE Joint Genome Institute, working on the epigenetic control of drought response in sorghum.

    Currently I am a postdoctoral associate in our Genome Technologies group. My researches focus on developing ultra-long read sequencing methods with the third generation single-molecule sequencing technologies and applying them with other cutting edge genome technologies to identify the genomic structural variations in cancer genome.

    Bioinformatics|Cancer|Genetics and Genomics Bioinformatics|Cancer|Genetics and Genomics Postdoctoral Associate
    Graham Kourtney Graham, Ph.D. Bar Harbor, ME
    Integrates in vivo Ca2+ imaging and chemogenetic techniques to investigate neural circuits involved in the regulation of food intake
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    I graduated from Florida State University with a PhD in Neuroscience in May of 2017 and joined the O’Connell lab shortly thereafter as postdoctoral associate. I am studying the neural circuits involved in the control of food intake in the context of obesity. In general, obesity occurs when homeostatic mechanisms that regulate food intake and energy expenditure become dysregulated due to excessive caloric intake and decreased activity. Glial cells are critical to the development, function and maintenance of neuronal circuits involved in food intake. In particular, astrocytes – the most abundantly expressed glial cells in the brain – are well-established in their role of providing crucial metabolic support to neurons. I am interested in delineating the mechanisms by which diet-induced obesity modulates astrocyte-dependent changes in neuronal activity and feeding behavior. To do this, I use in vivo Ca2+ imaging and chemogenetic techniques to simultaneously modulate and measure neuronal and astrocyte activity while the mice are performing food-seeking behaviors. Ultimately, these studies should provide crucial insights into the progression of obesity as well as changes that may occur in astrocyte activity in response to high-fat diet.

    Behavioral Disorders|Diabetes and Obesity Behavioral Disorders|Diabetes and Obesity The O'Connell Lab Postdoctoral Associate
    Harder Jeffrey Harder, Ph.D. Bar Harbor, ME
    Researching axon degeneration and the roles of immunity in the central nervous system and diet in glaucoma.
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    I joined the Simon John lab in the spring of 2013, excited by the opportunity of working with Dr. John and using a multidisciplinary approach in my research. Using DBA/2J mice as a model of glaucoma, my current research focuses on axon degeneration, the role of innate immunity in the central nervous system, and the role of diet in neurodegeneration. This includes studying the role of JNKs in glaucomatous injury and working to identify early signaling events that may initiate injury. For another project, I am collaborating with faculty from Dalhousie University, working on defining human genes responsible for exfoliation syndrome glaucoma. I also work closely with fellow postdoc Pete Williams and help direct two research assistants in the lab.  This opportunity to collaborate and manage while working through complex projects is broadening my conceptual thinking abilities both scientifically and managerially, and improving the array of skill sets necessary for running a lab.

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    Genetics and Genomics|Complex Traits|Bioinformatics Genetics and Genomics|Complex Traits|Bioinformatics The John Lab Postdoctoral Associate
    Hicks Amy N. Hicks, Ph.D. Bar Harbor, ME
    Utilizes spontaneous and CRISPR/Cas9 generated mouse lines along with primary cell culture models to look at the molecular intersection between the motor neuron and heart phenotypes in mouse models of Spinal Muscular Atrophy with Respiratory Distress (SMARD).
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    Spinal Muscular Atrophy with Respiratory Distress (SMARD) is a very rare recessive form of Spinal Muscular Atrophy (SMA) that typically presents as acute respiratory failure between 6 weeks to 6 months of age followed by a progressive motor paralysis. Most patients die within 2-3 years, but some do plateau and live for many years with continuous respiratory, feeding and mobility support. Unfortunately, there is currently no cure.

    A variety of different mutations in the Immunoglobulin mu-binding protein 2 (Ighmbp2) gene have been identified to be the cause of SMARD, but the mechanism of how these mutations result in this disease are still unknown. Since this is a recessive disease, that means that two mutant copies of the gene are required to be inherited…one from each parent.

    In 1998, Greg Cox identified the first mouse model of this disease called nmd2J which is still the only model of SMARD utilized for research. The phenotype of these mice is consistent with the human patients. Unexpectedly, a genetic rescue of the nerves in this mouse model rescued the paralysis, but it also resulted in the development of a dilated cardiomyopathy (Maddatu TG et al. Hum Mol Genet 2004).

    My work focuses on the molecular mechanism underlying both the motor neuron and cardiomyocyte phenotypes that develop as a result of mutations in Ighmbp2. Even though heart issues have not been identified in SMARD1 patients, the fear is that any treatment that fixes the paralysis and does not also treat the heart may produce the same fate for patients that we see in the mouse. The ultimate goal of this work is to identify therapeutic targets in both the heart and spinal cord….hopefully in both….to provide treatments to delay/stop cell death and expand the therapeutic window for genetic interventions.

    Wild Type Image Diagram

    Wild-type is the C57BL/6J inbred mouse strain, nmd2J is a homozygous mutant, and the rescued nmd2J is a homozygous mutant carrying a neuron-specific transgene of the Ighmbp2 gene to specifically rescue the paralysis. Femoral motor neuron cross-sections were imaged from 1 month old animals at 40x magnification. Whole heart longitudinal sections from 7-week-old animals were stained with Masson’s trichrome and imaged at 20x magnification. (Note: The rescued nmd2J nerve looks like the wild-type nerve).

     

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    Genetics and Genomics|Aging|Neurodegenerative and Neuromuscular Diseases Genetics and Genomics|Aging|Neurodegenerative and Neuromuscular Diseases The Cox Lab Postdoctoral Associate

    Li Hua

    Postdoctoral Associate

    Bar Harbor, ME

    Hua Li Hua, Ph.D. Bar Harbor, ME
    Stromal cells may provide a positive or negative role in modulating the immunotherapy.
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    Allogeneic tumors are eventually rejected by adaptive immune responses, however, little is known about how allogeneic tumors are eradicated at the early stage of tumor development. In the study, we found that NKG2DL low expressing cancer cells were developed into palpable allogeneic tumors in mice within a week after the inoculation, while NKG2DL high expressing cancer cells failed to. Artificially up-regulating NKG2DL on cancer cells with low level expressed NKG2DL by a CpG ODN resulted in the retardation and rejection of the allogeneic tumors at the early stage. The contribution of up-regulated NKG2DL to the early rejection was further confirmed by the results that the development of allogeneic tumors from cancer cells transfected with NKG2DL genes was significantly inhibited in mice at the early stage.

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    Cancer Cancer The Ren Lab Postdoctoral Associate
    Katebi Ataur Katebi, Ph.D. Bar Harbor, ME
    Studies the architectures, dynamics, and functions of proteins as biological nano-machines and their interactions in biological networks.
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    Protein-protein interactions in biological networks.

    Computational Biology Computational Biology The Lu Lab Postdoctoral Associate
    Keele Greg Keele, Ph.D. Bar Harbor, ME
    Statistical modeling of proteomic data to better understand protein dynamics as well as provide a more complete picture of the regulation of complex phenotypes.
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    Dr. Keele completed his doctoral studies in bioinformatics and computational biology at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, developing statistical methods for the design and analysis of experiments of multiparental populations, such as the Collaborative Cross (CC) and the Diversity Outbred (DO) stock in mice. Recently he joined the lab of Dr. Gary Churchill, where he is focused on statistical approaches to model and analyze mass spectrometry shot gun proteomics data. Relatedly, he is interested in the genetic regulation of complex phenotypes, particularly through integrative analysis of multiple levels of data per subject, such as genotype, gene expression, and protein abundance. 
    Complex Traits|Genetics and Genomics|JAX Genetic Diversity Initiative Complex Traits|Genetics and Genomics|JAX Genetic Diversity Initiative The Churchill Lab Postdoctoral Associate
    Kent Travis Kent, Ph.D. Bar Harbor, ME
    Studies the role of the somatic environment on meiosis by utilizing a novel method of simplifying the testicular architecture.
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    I joined the laboratory of Dr. Mary Ann Handel in the fall of 2015. The Handel laboratory focuses on the genetics of meiosis and how errors in meiosis can lead to developmental abnormalities. My work focuses on understanding the manner in which germ cells properly exit meiotic prophase. Specifically, I am interested in the role the somatic environment plays in the process. I utilize a novel method of synchronizing spermatogenesis in both wild type and transgenic mouse models to better anchor events occurring in germ cells in their proper somatic context. Outside of the laboratory, I am interested in the intersection between science and policy. I help lead a journal club for the JAX Summer Student Program highlighting science in the media spotlight. I also have been an active participant in the Rally for Medical Research, lobbying Congressmen and women to commit to increased funding for the National Institute of Health. This combined experience has provided me with the skills to be both a discerning scientist and an effective ambassador for the scientific community.

    Genetics and Genomics|Reproductive Disorders Genetics and Genomics|Reproductive Disorders The Handel Lab Postdoctoral Associate
    Lau Alyssa Lau, Ph.D. Farmington, CT
    Research focuses on identifying epigenetic markers in solid and liquid biopsies to characterize a variety of cancer types.
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    Alyssa received her Ph.D. in Molecular, Cellular, and Developmental Biology along with a Master’s degree in Bioinformatics from the University of Michigan where she studied the connection between compensation for X-linked gene dosage imbalance and chromosome organization in C. elegans. Previously, she received her B.S in Biochemistry and Graphic Design at Syracuse University. Currently Alyssa is a postdoctoral associate in our Genome Technologies group, where she is working on developing cutting edge sequencing technologies to analyze the cancer epigenome.

    Bioinformatics|Cancer|Genetics and Genomics Bioinformatics|Cancer|Genetics and Genomics Postdoctoral Associate

    Duncan MacGruff

    Postdoctoral Associate

        MacGruff Duncan MacGruff
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        Jib scurvy bilged on her anchor ballast Arr topgallant gaff Yellow Jack stern long clothes. Ballast run a rig gunwalls scourge of the seven seas transom crimp provost league tackle Admiral of the Black. Lass boatswain gally ye bring a spring upon her cable black jack plunder prow cackle fruit keelhaul.

        Fire ship Sink me hardtack hearties league lass Privateer Nelsons folly broadside rum. Cutlass topmast parley bowsprit scallywag scuppers mizzenmast belaying pin pillage aye. Handsomely log cable mutiny pirate doubloon nipperkin bilge rat overhaul yard.

        Postdoctoral Associate
        Nehar-Belaid Djamel Nehar-Belaid, Ph.D. Farmington, CT
        My main interest is to try to understand how alternative splicing of transcripts can shape the immune response to different type of antigens
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        I am a systems Immunologist working in the field of dendritic cells biology. My research focuses on understanding how epigenetic and/or transcriptional modifications occurring in immune-cell populations orchestrate and modulate the quality of the immune response to different type of antigens including pathogens, auto-antigens and vaccines. To try to answer these challenging questions, we are employing a multidisciplinary approach, combining computational methods and cell biology.

        Bioinformatics|Computational Biology|Immune Disorders Bioinformatics|Computational Biology|Immune Disorders The Banchereau Lab Postdoctoral Associate
        Olayan Rawan Olayan, Ph.D. Farmington, CT
        Model disease through aligning human-mouse phenotype data : case study in Alzheimer disease (AD)
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        Develops computational approaches using phenotype data to identify complex genetic networks and gene interactions relevant to AD.

        Aging|Bioinformatics|Cancer|Complex Traits Aging|Bioinformatics|Cancer|Complex Traits The Carter Lab Postdoctoral Associate
        Pandey Raghav Pandey, Ph.D. Bar Harbor, ME
        Cardiovascular research focused on metabolic changes that can be altered to prevent disease onset.
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        Raghav received his B.S. (Biotechnology, 2010) from Indiana University (Bloomington IN), followed by M.S. (Physiology, 2012) from Indiana State University (Terre Haute IN) where he studied angiogenesis in zebrafish doing cancer research. He received his Ph.D. from University of Cincinnati College of Medicine(Cell Biology, 2017) working on cardiovascular regenerative medicine. His thesis involved looking at microRNAs, stem cells, human-iPS derived cardiomyocytes, and other therapeutics that can be used for cardiac regeneration post ischemic injury.

        Aging|Developmental Disorders|Reproductive Disorders Aging|Developmental Disorders|Reproductive Disorders The Rosenthal Lab Postdoctoral Associate

        New Person AKJ

        Postdoctoral Associate|Event Contact|Event Organizer|Event Speaker

        The Jackson Laboratory

            Postdoc Test Postdoc, AKJ Postdoctoral Associate|Event Contact|Event Organizer|Event Speaker
            Powers Natalie Powers, Ph.D. Bar Harbor, ME
            Researching the role of the histone methyltransferase PRDM9 in allocation and repair of meiotic double-strand breaks, which are necessary for the essential process of genetic recombination.
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            I am mainly interested in how regulatory and epigenetic factors can influence the inheritance and expression of heritable traits, especially complex traits. My Ph.D. work primarily used human genetic methods, and I joined The Jackson Laboratory to expand my expertise with mice. My current research involves the role of the histone methyltransferase PRDM9 in allocation and repair of meiotic double-strand breaks, which are necessary for the essential process of genetic recombination. In mammals, PRDM9 is responsible for both initiating and localizing the sites of recombination within the genome. I have several ongoing projects in the lab, all of which involve the DNA-binding properties of PRDM9 in vivo, and the roles of PRDM9-dependent histone modifications in recombination.

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            Computational Biology|Genetics and Genomics|Complex Traits Computational Biology|Genetics and Genomics|Complex Traits The Paigen Lab Postdoctoral Associate

            Postdoctoral Associate

            Bar Harbor, ME

              Pullagura Sri Ramulu Pullagura Bar Harbor, ME The Braun Lab Postdoctoral Associate
              Racine Jeremy Racine, Ph.D. Bar Harbor, ME
              Investigating type 1 diabetes and the development of therapies using mouse models of the disease.
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              My research involves the development of therapies for treating type 1 diabetes in a humanized version of the NOD mouse. Using NOD mice in which the mouse MHC class I has been replaced with a human variant linked to type 1 diabetes development, I am studying how several therapies can tolerize autoreactive CD8+ T cells selected on the human HLA. The first project revolves around using hematopoietic stem cell transplantation and induction of mixed chimerism to determine how protective MHC can tolerize autoreactive CD8+ T cells. A second project revolves around peptide-microsphere conjugates and how dosing pre-diabetic humanized-NOD mice with diabetogenic peptides can prevent diabetes development, and the mechanisms by which autoreactive CD8+ T cells are tolerized by these peptide-microsphere conjugates. A final side project/collaboration involves dissecting the mechanisms by which IFNϒ can act as an inhibitory cytokine for autoreactive CD8+ T cell expansion.

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              Complex Traits|Genetics and Genomics|Resource Development and Dissemination|Diabetes and Obesity Complex Traits|Genetics and Genomics|Resource Development and Dissemination|Diabetes and Obesity The Serreze Lab Postdoctoral Associate
              Sordo Vieira Luis Sordo Vieira, Ph.D. Farmington, CT
              Building predictive mathematical models to investigate the role of iron and the tumor microenvironment on cancer progression.
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              Dr. Sordo Vieira joined The Jackson Laboratory in July 2018 to work in the Laubenbacher laboratory as a postdoctoral associate. His main interests lie in cancer systems biology. He is particularly interested in multi-scale mathematical modeling incorporating genetic and epigenetic data to investigate the role of iron and the tumor microenvironment on cancer progression. He was previously a postdoctoral fellow for one year at UConn Health's Center for Quantitative Medicine working on mathematical analysis of intracellular signaling networks.

              As a graduate student at the University of Kentucky, Dr. Sordo Vieira received the prestigious National Science Foundation Graduate Student Fellowship and proved a major part of an old number theoretic conjecture. He graduated Summa Cum Laude from Wayne State University in 2012 with a B.S. in Mathematics and a minor in physics.

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              Bioinformatics|Cancer|Computational Biology Bioinformatics|Cancer|Computational Biology The Laubenbacher Lab Postdoctoral Associate
              Yang Hongtian 'Stanley' Yang, Ph.D. Bar Harbor, ME
              Determining genetic modifiers/drivers in brain myeloid cells that impact Alzheimer's disease progression
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              Brain myeloid cell-mediated neuroinflammation plays a key role in genetic susceptibility and development of dementias, particularly Alzheimer’s disease (AD), but the precise mechanisms are not known. I employ genetically diverse mouse models of AD to mimic the vast amount of genetic variation seen in the human patients. I apply the cutting-edge single-cell RNA sequencing technology together with biochemical and behavioral assays to identify genetic modifiers/drivers in brain myeloid cells that impact AD progression. The ultimate goal of my study is to identify novel therapeutic targets for AD. 

               

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              Neurodegenerative and Neuromuscular Diseases Neurodegenerative and Neuromuscular Diseases The Howell Lab Postdoctoral Associate
              Young Kira Young, Ph.D. Bar Harbor, ME
              Studies hematopoiesis and the molecular basis of aging in the blood.
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              Studies hematopoiesis and the molecular basis of aging in the blood.

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              Aging|Cancer Aging|Cancer The Trowbridge Lab Postdoctoral Associate