Graduate Students

Dieter Bromme Lab

Simon Law
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Masters Student

I received my BSc from UBC in Biochemistry and Chemistry. My current project involves the identification of novel inhibitors for cathepsin K, an enzyme implicated in osteoporosis and cardiovascular diseases. These novel inhibitors selectively block some of the enzymatic activities of the enzyme and leave the active site intact.

Methods: molecular docking, enzymatic assays, protein crystallography and molecular biology.

Taynara Lopes
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PhD Student
My name is Taynara Lopes, I am 29 years old and I am from Brazil. I graduated in chemistry from Federal University of Goiás and Master Degree in Chemistry from Federal University of São Carlos. Now, I am a PhD student from Federal University of São Carlos and I am doing a part of my PhD here in UBC under the supervision of Professor Dieter Bromme.
Raquel Rodriguez
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PhD Student

Don Brooks Lab

Mahsa Alizadeh
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PhD Candidate
I have a BSc in Applied Chemistry and an MSc in Organic Chemistry from the University of Tehran. I have always been passionate about continuing my research in a way to bridge chemistry and pharmacy. For PhD, I joined Brooks/Kizhakkedathu research team at UBC working on a drug delivery project. The goal of my PhD research is to deliver progesterone to the brain for treatment of traumatic brain injuries. To create a successful delivery to the brain, I am using a polymeric system vehicle to encapsulate progesterone to improve its solubility and stability.
narges Narges Hadjesfandiari
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PhD Candidate

I got my Pharm. D. from Tehran University of Medical Sciences and worked for three years in Iran. I have always been impressed by research that improves health services and saves lives around the world. For my PhD thesis, I work on modification of platelet bag surfaces to decrease surface induced platelet damage and prevent bacterial growth under platelet storage conditions, thus extending their storage life prior to transfusion.

Methods: surface characterization methods, in vitro bacterial and platelet tests.

Ji Ying Wen
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Masters Student
After obtaining a BSc in Chemistry from Beijing Normal University, P.R. China, I moved half across the world to UBC and currently pursuing my MSc with Dr. Don Brooks. My research focuses on engineering the surface of hyperbranched polyglycerols to develop universal biocompatible blood sealant. My interest spans from the interface between chemistry and hematology to statistical computing.
  Chu Liu 
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Graduate Student
youping-li1 Youping Li
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Graduate Student
After completing B.Sc degree in Chemistry at McMaster University, Ontario, I started M.Sc program at UBC in September, 2016 under the supervision of Prof. Donald Brooks. I am excited to work on combining both chemical and biological analysis to resolve the fundamental mechanisms of significant discoveries in the field of blood research. My future project will be focusing on functionalization and characterization of choline phosphate through utilizing varieties of bioanalytical techniques.

Ed Conway Lab

Linnette Ocariza
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Masters Student

I received my Bachelor’s at UBC, in the Medical Laboratory Science Program. My current research focuses on the physiological relevance of polyphosphates, using age-related macular degeneration as a disease model.

Methods: cell-culturing and immunoassay techniques.

Yolanda Yang
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Masters Student

I completed my BSc at UBC, in the Combined Major in Science program combining chemistry, life science and computer science. Now I am working as a joint student with Dr. Conway and Dr. Scott Tebbutt. My research focuses on how complement-related genes have effects on the late-phase response of allergic asthma.

Methods: gene expression analysis of microarray and RNA-sequencing data, R statistical language, basic coding in Java and C++, blood processing, SDS-PAGE.

Hélène Côté Lab

Anthony Hsieh
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PhD Student

I have a BSc (Hons) in the UBC/BCIT Biotechnology joint program.  I started graduate school in the Department of Pathology and Laboratory Medicine less than 2 months after graduating, and I plan to complete my PhD here.  My current work addresses the effect of chronic HIV infection on accelerated aging in immune cell subsets.

Methods: multiplex qPCR, cell sorting (FACS), and cell culture.

Abhinav Ajaykumar
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PhD Student

I completed my B.Tech in Biotechnology from VIT University, India in 2013 following which I moved to Vancouver to further pursue my academic interests. Having started graduate school in the Department of Pathology and Laboratory Medicine, I plan on completing my PhD with the Côté group. My research primarily focuses on investigating the effects of maternal HIV and antiretroviral drug exposure in utero on cellular aging in infants.

Methods: Multiplex qPCR, cell culture.

Matthew Budd
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Masters Student

After studying biochemistry and particle physics for two years each at the University of Calgary, I transferred to Mount Royal University in Calgary AB, and graduated with a BA in Psychology. I am currently studying Pathology & Laboratory Medicine in Dr. Cote’s lab. My work investigates the role of mitochondrial dysfunction in the context of various neurological and cognitive-behavioural metrics in HIV-exposed uninfected children and HIV+ women.

Methods: Multiplex qPCR, next generation sequencing, bioinformatics.

Sara Saberi
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PhD Candidate

I completed my B.Sc. in Food Science at Azad University, Tehran, Iran. In 2007, I came to UBC to follow my graduate studies with a professional masters degree in Food Science (MFS). After finishing MFS program, I decided to expand my research experience in the field of biotechnology and joined Dr. van Vuuren’s laboratory as MSc student to study genetic and enological characteristics of the Saccharomyces cerevisiae strains. However, I have always been passionate about medical research and now I am a PhD candidate in the department of pathology and laboratory medicine at Dr. Côté laboratory. My research project focuses on the cellular aging in HIV-infected pregnant women and cell culture models following exposure to HIV antiretroviral therapy.

Methods: multiplex qPCR, cell culture, next generation sequencing.

Marta Salvador Ordoño
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Masters Student

I obtained my Pharm.D at the University of Granada, Spain. On the summer 2011 I studied at the University of Seoul, South Korea as part of an International Summer School. During the 4th year of my degree, I went on an academic exchange to the University of Montana, US. I also worked there as an undergraduate researcher at the CSFN Center for Structural and Functional Neuroscience ,where I investigated about Alzheimer’s Disease. Before moving to Vancouver I have been working as community pharmacist. Now I’m doing a masters in Pathology and Laboratory Medicine in Helene Cote’s Lab. My research focuses on HIV+ pregnant women, and the adverse birth outcomes, as a consequence of in utero antiretroviral drug exposure.

Methods: cell culture, multiplex q-PCR, ELISA assay, Immunohistochemistry, Confocal Microscopy

Dana Devine Lab

Ahmad Arbaeen
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PhD Student

Completing my MSc in Laboratory Medicine from Royal Melbourne Institute of Technology RMIT, Australia in 2011, I came to UBC in 2012 passionate to continue my higher education within the Devine Research Group. My aim is to learn methods to improve the quality of services produced in blood banks to save human lives. My experimental focus in transfusion medicine is in the area of platelet product processing and storage.  My project aims to improve the quality of platelet transfusion by predicting transfusion outcomes.

Methods: thromboelastography and thromboelastometry.

Deb Chen
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PhD Candidate

Of all the disciplines of pathology I have been educated in during my undergraduate degree in Medical Laboratory Science at UBC, I find hematology to be the most fascinating. I pursued operational research within the field as a graduate student, because I wanted my research efforts to indirectly impact clinical care. My project aims to understand the effect of donor variability and to appraise pathogen inactivation technology on red cell product quality, by focusing on the changes in red cell membrane proteins.

Methods: quantitative proteomics.

Hanqi (Wayne) Zhao
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PhD Student
I received my Bachelor from University of Toronto specialising in Immunology. Then I completed my Master’s Degree here at UBC working with preservation of biologicals using engineered antifreeze proteins. Now I am exploring the field of transfusion medicine under the supervision of Dr.Dana Devine. My project will mainly focus on new platelet storage methods and applicaiton. The ultimate goal of my research is to be able to help those in need.
Christa Klein-Bosgoed
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PhD Candidate

After I received my Pharm. D from the University of Groningen, the Netherlands in 2005 I worked as a pharmacist in the pharmaceutical industry and as a researcher with the Dutch Blood Supply Organization Sanquin. Continuing this path of blood research I moved to Canada where I now pursue a PhD in the lab of Dr. Dana Devine. My project is focused on how pathogen inactivation techniques affect platelet products for transfusion and more specific platelet mRNA.

Methods: RT-PCR, qPCR, western blotting.

Leonard Foster Lab

Craig Kerr
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PhD Student

After completing my B.Sc. in Microbiology at the University of Guelph, I started my Ph.D. under the supervision of Leonard Foster and Eric Jan. My project focus on using Drosophila as a model system to study how viruses interact with host cells, specifically the innate immune system. Using deep sequencing and quantitative proteomics I’m looking into the role of small vesicles involved in cell-to-cell communication, termed exosomes, during viral infection in Drosophila.

Methods: Quantitative proteomics, Cellomics, Confocal, RNA methods (Northern blots, RT-PCR etc.

Alison McAfee
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Masters Student

I have a B.Sc. Honours Biochemistry, Minor in Biology (Ecology) from UBC.  Currently, I am studying a form of disease resistance called “hygienic behaviour” in the honey bee. A handful of olfactory proteins are tightly linked with hygienic behaviour and my thesis revolves around determining their functional role, such as what odorants the proteins bind to and what happens to the behaviour if the proteins are overexpressed or knocked down.

Methods: liquid chromatography mass spectrometry, proteomics, gas chromatography mass spectrometry, electroantennography, RNAi and transgenics.

Bob Hancock

beverlie Beverlie Baquir
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Graduate Student
After completing my BSc in Biology at California State University Long Beach, my work focused on the immunogenicity of recombinant Als3 vaccine against bacterial and fungal infections. Currently, I am a PhD student under the supervision of Dr. Bob Hancock. My project investigates the role that innate immune cells, particularly monocytes, play in the reprogramming of the host response due to infection which can result in life-threatening syndromes such as sepsis.
corrie Corrie Belanger
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Masters Student

I have a BSc in Cellular, Molecular and Microbial Biology from Thompson Rivers University. My current research focuses on the effects of known and modified antibiotics and antimicrobial peptides against opportunistic gram negative pathogens in host-like conditions. I am studying the mechanisms that allow these pathogens to have differential susceptibility to some antimicrobial agents in conditions that mimic the host environment, such as the serum of a sepsis patient or the sputum of a cystic fibrosis patient.

Methods: MIC assays, time kill curves, synergy assays, RNA-Seq, RT-qPCR, Tn-Seq.

Evelyn_Sun Evelyn Sun
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PhD Student

I graduated from UBC with a BSc in 2014 having completed the joint UBC/BCIT Honours in Biotechnology program. During my undergrad, I spend my co-op terms exploring the many disciplines that ultimately fall into the field of biotechnology. With a passion for infectious disease research, I started my MSc turned PhD studying a novel form of motility exhibited by the pathogen, Pseudomonas aeruginosa.

Methods: RNASeq, Bacterial Culture, Antibiotic Screening (eg. MIC)

Kate Sedivy-Haley
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Graduate Student

I have a BSc in Biochemistry from Queen’s University. My current research focuses on the manner in which various signals can create alternative activation modes in macrophages, changing their response to signals of infection such as TLR agonists to promote inflammation, wound healing, or other activities.

Methods: tissue culture, immunoassay, RT-PCR, mouse models.

Samuel Hinshaw
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Masters Student
KelliWuerth Kelli Wuerth
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PhD Student

I graduated from Washington State University with a BSc in Microbiology before moving to Canada to pursue my PhD in Microbiology and Immunology. My research concentrates on finding alternatives to antibiotics for use against Pseudomonas aeruginosa, a common pathogen in cystic fibrosis patients. I use these innate defense regulator peptides in lung infection models and study their effectiveness and the resulting immune system changes.

Methods: eukaryotic cell culture, in vivo murine models, ELISAs.

lauren-wilkinson Lauren Wilkinson
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Graduate Student
I have a bachelor’s degree in Ecology and Evolutionary Biology from Princeton University.  I am completing a master’s degree in Microbiology and Immunology in the Hancock lab.  My focus is the inhibition of swarming motility in Pseudomonas aeruginosa, a ubiquitous and significant nosocomial pathogen.
Ryan Ho
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Graduate Student
sarahMansour Sarah Mansour
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Graduate Student

I received my B.Sc. at the University of Waterloo in Science and Business. My current research focuses on finding new solutions for recalcitrant Staphylococcus aureus biofilm infections and reverting multidrug resistance. In particular, I am assessing the efficacy of synthetic cationic peptides (derived conceptually from antimicrobial peptides) in a S. aureus skin infection model.

Methods:  murine infection models, various biofilm assays, confocal microscopy.

Shannon Coleman
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Graduate Student
I have a BSc in Microbiology & Immunology from UBC. I am interested in infectious diseases and the pathogens that cause diseases. My current research in the Hancock lab focuses on swarming motility and antibiotic resistance in Pseudomonas aeruginosa, a cystic fibrosis and nosocomial pathogen.

Wilfred Jefferies Lab

Hitesh Arora
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PhD Student

I did my Undergraduate studies in Biotechnology from Kurukshetra University, India, finished my Master’s in Molecular Biology from SRM University, India and went for an exchange program to Harvard Medical School, Boston, USA where I finished my master’s thesis. Iam currently pursuing my PhD in Microbiology and Immunology and working to understand the role of ATP binding cassette molecules in inflammation and immunity in TLR-4 mediated innate and adaptive immune responses.

Methods- Flow Cytometry, ELISA, Western Blot, Fluorescence Microscopy, RT-PCR, Cell culture

Samantha Ellis
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Franz Franz Fenninger
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I came to UBC to do a PhD in Microbiology and Immunology after completing my bachelors in Computational Molecular Biology at Graz University of Technology in Austria. I am now studying the role of calcium channels in B-lymphocyte development and homeostasis.
Jeffrey Han
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Iryna Saranchova
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chaahat singh Chaahat Singh
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 I graduated with a Masters degree (Hons.) in Microbiology from Guru Nanak Dev University, India. I then went on to fine tune my technical skills and get work experience as a project intern in the Institute of Microbial technology, India. Here I undertook research on the aspects of Nitrosative stress resistance in Mycobacterium tuberculosis. Enriched with this experience, I then came to UBC to peruse my PhD in Medical Genetics in the Jefferies’ Lab. The focus of my current research is the modulation of blood vessels in animal models of Alzheimer’s Disease, in order to find novel therapeutic interventions to abate disease pathology.Methods: in vivo AD murine models; treatment and cognitive behavioural analysis, immunohistochemistry, western blot analysis, confocal microscopy.
Shawna Stanwood
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PhD Student

I completed my Bachelor of Science at UBC with a Double Major in Biology and Psychology. I am currently a PhD candidate in the Department of Microbiology and Immunology. The focus of my research is on the role of voltage-dependent calcium (CaV) channels in immune cells.

Methods: Murine models, flow cytometry, cell culture, RT-PCR.

Aly Karsan Lab

Patrick Coulombe
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Graduate Student
I received my B.Sc. in Biochemistry from McGill University prior to joining Dr. Aly Karsan’s lab. My current focus is to investigate genes involve in hematopoiesis, particularly at earlier stages of embryogenesis when the first hematopoietic stem cells (HSC) arise.
Rawa Imrahim
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Graduate Student
Eva Yap
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Graduate Student
I received my BSc. (Honours) in Biochemistry and Molecular Biology from Trent University. My research interest is in bioinformatics and its application in studying epigenetic factors underlying cancer progression. My current project is focused on identifying aberrant DNA methylation mediators of colorectal cancer through the use of bioinformatics tools.

Juergen Kast Lab

Jiqing Huang
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Graduate Student
Honghui Jiang
Graduate Student
Ru Li
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Graduate Student
Savita Srinivasa
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Graduate Student
Cheng Cheng Zhang
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Graduate Student

Christian Kastrup Lab

James Bayles
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PhD Student

James completed his B.Sc. in Biophysics at UBC and is currently pursuing a Ph.D. in Biomedical Engineering.  He is developing new drug formulations for treatments of hemorrhage and thrombosis.

Methods: microscopy, microfluidics, and animal models of bleeding.

Vivienne Chan
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PhD Candidate
Karen Chan
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PhD Student

I received my B. Sc in Biophysics from UBC and am currently pursuing a Ph. D. in Genome Science and Technology. For my thesis project, I’m developing biomaterials that can be controlled by and function alongside the coagulation cascade.

Methods: polymer modifications, dynamic mechanical analysis, fluorescence microscopy.

Nima Mazinani
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PhD Student

I completed my BSc at UBC, majoring in biochemistry and molecular biology. I am currently a PhD candidate in the Kastrup lab and my project involves investigating the adhesive properties of blood clots, as well as deciphering links between Alzheimer’s disease and hemostasis. My interest ranges from coagulation biochemistry, coagulation biophysics and neurodegenerative diseases.

Methods: coagulation assays, enzyme kinetics, fluorescent microscopy, micfrofluidic models of coagulation, thromboelastography.

Stefanie Novakowski
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PhD Candidate
After completing a B.Sc. in Biochemistry at Queen’s University, ON, I joined the Biochemistry and Molecular Biology program at UBC where I am now working towards a PhD. My research focuses on engineering platelets for the targeted delivery of RNA-based therapeutics, utilizing lipid nanoparticles to deliver materials for RNA synthesis to platelets ex vivo. Platelets naturally release biomaterials at sites of vascular injury, and these engineered platelets have the potential to mediate unwanted coagulation or inflammation by the release and targeted delivery of exogenous RNA within the vasculature.
Steve Wooksuk Hur
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PhD Candidate

After obtaining my B. Sc. In Biochemistry at McGill, I joined the Kastrup Lab to pursue my PhD in Biochemistry and Molecular Biology. My research focuses on identifying the a new mechanism of regulation of FXIIIa and its implications in pathophysiology and therapeutics.

Methods: Microscopy and Western Blotting and in vivo murine models.

Hugh Kim Lab

Amir Ahmadi
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Masters Student
Enoli De Silva
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Masters Student
I recently completed my BSc in Biochemistry and Molecular Biology at UBC where I obtained work experience through the UBC Science Co-op program. I am now pursuing my MSc in the Kim Lab, where I am studying how the actin-binding protein filamin A controls platelet function. The overall goal is to eventually learn more about how platelets participate in inflammation.
Vincent Senini
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Masters Student
I graduated with a Doctor of Dental Surgery degree from the University of Toronto and I am now completing a combined MSc and Diploma in Periodontics at the University of British Columbia. My research investigates the degree to which platelet-derived factors mediate pro-inflammatory cytokine secretion in gingival fibroblasts.

Jay Kizhakkedathu Lab

Usama Abbasi
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Masters Student
Originally from Hong Kong, I came to UBC to complete my Bachelor of Medical Laboratory Science and currently, I am pursuing a MSc in Pathology and Laboratory Medicine. I am working in Dr. Kizhakkedathu’s laboratory at CBR on the development of novel macromolecular therapeutics for the treatment of iron overload.
hossein yazdani Hossein Yazdani Ahmadabadi
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PhD Student
I hold a BSc and MSc degree in Polymer Science from Amirkabir University of Technology (AUT, Iran). I have a two year working experience on the development of the UV-curable coatings and the photopolymers used in 3D printing processes in a knowledge-based company in Iran. For my PhD thesis, I am working on the development of the novel polymeric coatings used in the cardiovascular applications.
Ariana Amirkeyvan
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PhD Student
Arshdeep Gill
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Masters Student
Prashant Kumar
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PhD Candidate

Originally from Fiji, I have a Biochemistry Bachelors (Hons) degree obtained from three different schools (UBC, Langara college and the University of Otaga, New Zealand). The goal of my research is to develop antimicrobial agents for systemic infections. Currently, I am working with polymers to increase the efficacy of antimicrobial peptides.

Methods: Peptide synthesis, purification, antimicrobial assays and polymer modifications.

Chanel La
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Masters Student
Upon completion of my B.Sc. in Chemistry from McGill University, I came to UBC to pursue a graduate degree under the supervision of Dr. Kizhakkedathu. My current project focuses on development of novel macromolecular inhibitors to eliminate thrombotic risk.
Daniel Luo
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PhD Student
I completed my Bachelor of Science degree at McMaster University in Hamilton in the field of Chemical Biology. I completed my undergraduate thesis in the Hoare lab by developing novel polymeric nanoparticles as potential drug delivery vehicles. I also completed a work term in the Barrett lab at McGill University looking at polyelectrolytic multilayers for cell adhesion. Now I have joined the Kizhakkedathu lab for my PhD in Chemistry. My research interest lies in polymeric materials for biomedical applications.
Yan Mei
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PhD Student

After completing my MSc in Biomaterials and Tissue Engineering from Southeast University, I joined Kizhakkedathu group for doctoral studies. My research is aimed at developing novel coatings to improve the quality of vascular catheters and urological catheters. For my PhD thesis, I work on modification of indwelling catheter surfaces to decrease surface induced thrombus formation and biofilm formation based on mussel-inspired chemistry.

Methods: surface and particle characterization methods, bacterial assays and hemocompatibity assays.

haisle-moon Haisle Moon
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Graduate Student
After completing my MSc in Craniofacial Science from UBC, I joined Kizhakkedathu research team to keep moving forward with my research interest in modulation of functional surfaces to minimize the immune response from the host. For my PhD thesis, I am focusing on red blood cell surface engineering to develop truly universal red blood donor cells. Such development would significantly improve the blood supply and increase transfusion safety by successfully modulating the interaction between the modified cells and host immune system.Methods: Bio-functionalized polymer grafting and enzymatic cleavage of carbohydrate antigens
Erika Siren
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PhD Student
Upon completing my MSc in Chemistry from the University of Toronto, I decided to continue my training within the Kizhakkedathu Research Group. My research works at the interface of Chemistry and Cell Biology, where I design bio-inspired polymers for modification of the cell surface. This methodology is used to prevent delayed graft function and rejection in whole organ transplants by creating an immunoisolation barrier between the blood and vasculature. My experiments are conducted using a microfluidic platform to mimic perfusion based cold storage of organs and post-transplantation blood flow.
  Lily Takeuchi
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Graduate Student
After completing my Bachelors degree in Medical Laboratory Sciences at the University of British Columbia, I decided to continue my studies with the Kizhakkedathu group for a Masters degree in Pathology and Laboratory Medicine. My research focuses on the development of a targeted drug delivery system to treat iron overload in cardiac cells occurring in patients that require chronic transfusions such as patients with thalassemias and sickle cell anemia. My research interest is to engineering creative solutions to overcome barriers in the body and enhance therapeutics delivery.
Manu Thomas
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PhD Candidate

After completing my MSc in pharmaceutical chemistry from MGR Medical University, India, I joined Kizhakkedathu/Brooks group for doctoral studies. I have a strong passion for research and my ultimate aim is to make significant contribution in the field of drug discovery and development. The goal of my current project is to develop a novel, nontoxic and synthetic macromolecular inhibitor for polyanions, such as heparins and polyphosphates.

Methods: polymerization methodologies, hematological assays and techniques for determining protein properties, interactions, and structure (NMR, circular dichroism, fluorescence spectroscopy, ITC, gel permeation chromatography, mass spectroscopy).

sreeparna-v Sreeparna Vappala
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MSc Student
 I completed my Master’s degree in biology from Indian Institute of Science Education and Research, Kolkata. Here at UBC, I joined Kizhakkedathu group as a graduate student with an urge to translate the discoveries from a laboratory bench to the bedside of the patient. My project is on developing better therapeutics for thrombosis without the risk of bleeding. It involves in developing inhibitors that selectively target the newly identified polyanionic mediators of thrombosis. To accomplish this, we will synthesize and characterize novel inhibitors. Efficacy of these molecules will be determined by animal models and several biological assays for coagulation.

Kelly McNagny Lab

jessie_poster %282%29 Jessie Cait
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Masters Student
I received my BSc in Biology from Wilfrid Laurier University. Currently, I am a MSc student in the department of Experimental Medicine. My work examines how the CD34 family member, Podocalyxin, is involved in regulating vascular barrier function during steady state and inflammatory conditions.
Diana Canals
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Masters Student

I received my BSc in Biochemistry from the Universidad Autonoma de Madrid (UAM) in Spain before moving to Canada to enroll in my MSc in Medical Genetics. I have always been interested in helping people by improving their health. My research focuses on the study of podocalyxin, a member of the CD34 family sialomucins, and its role in primary tumor development and metastasis.

Methods: in vivo murine tumor models, cell culture, Flow Cytometry.

Bernard Lo
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PhD Candidate
ido dp Ido Refaeli
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Masters Student
Chronic kidney diseases affect ~10% of the Canadian population. Despite their heterogeneous and complex etiologies, many chronic renal disorders ultimately converge at single common sequela—Podocytopathy: a poorly understood change in the behavior, survival and morphology of kidney podocytes. The goal of my research is to uncover the mechanism by which the podocyte-specific protein podocalyxin, a CD34-family sialomucin, functions to maintain normal podocyte function. Using a variety of experimental models, my work examines if the various proteins regulated by podocalyxin can be targeted therapeutically to preserve normal podocyte function or halt their effacement during disease.

Chris Orvig Lab

neha-choudhary Neha Choudhary
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PhD Student
 I completed my Bachelors with Honours in Chemistry at University of Delhi, India. I worked on development of mechanism-based reversible inhibitors of kinases to target cancer during my M.Sc in Chemistry at Indian Institute of Technology Madras, India. I have started my Ph.D in the Chris Orvig group at UBC. My research involves synthesis of radioactive metal complexes which aim for therapy or imaging. I am currently working with 8-Hydroxyquinoline ligands.
Aidan Ingham
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PhD Student
Lily Li
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PhD Student
IMG_1903 Tom Kostelnik
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PhD Student
I completed my B.Sc with Honours in Chemistry at Mount Allison University in Sackville, New Brunswick. My current work in the Orvig group is focused on designing acyclic picolinic acid chelators functionalized with phosphonate moieties, which should serve to coordinate to hard radiometals such as actinium. The primary goal of our group’s work is the production of novel radiopharmaceuticals for diagnostic imaging and therapy.
Jefferey Jang
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MSc Student
sarah spreckelmeyer Sarah Spreckelmeyer 
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PhD Student
I received my three state exams (equivalent to BSc and MSc) in Pharmacy from the University of Braunschweig, Germany. In 2014, I started my Joint PhD program between the University of Groningen (Netherlands) and UBC. In the Netherlands, I worked for two years in the department of pharmacokinetics, toxicology and targeting under the supervision of Prof. Angela Casini, where I investigated the mechanism of action of novel organometallic anticancer agents compared to cisplatin by studying transporter mechanisms. At UBC, I work under the supervision of Prof. Chris Orvig in the department of chemistry, where I synthesize new radiopharmaceutical for either therapy or imaging. The main focus is the chelator design for radiometals like Zr-89, Ac-225 or Bi-213.
Xiaozhu (Hunter) Wang
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PhD Student
I received my B.Sc in Pharmacy from Capital Medical University, Beijing, China, and then my M.Sc in Bioscience from King Abudullah University of Science and Technology in Saudi Arabia. I am now a Ph.D student in the department of Chemistry, where I design and synthesize bifuncational chelators for radiometals in the application of nuclear medicine.
DavidWeeks David Weekes
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PhD Student

I completed my combined BSc. and MChem joint between Newcastle University (UK) and Universite de Strasbourg (France), primarily working on supramolecular and catalyst chemistry before switching my focus to medicinal inorganic chemistry for the start of my PhD with Dr. Chris Orvig. My project involves designing chelators which are intended to improve the oral bioavailabilty of lanthanum(III) ions, in an effort to explore a potential therapeutic effect this metal could have on osteoporosis sufferers.

Methods: Organic/inorganic synthesis; chemical analysis; purification; ICP-MS; in vitro assays.

Chris Overall Lab

Simon Abbey
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Masters Student
After a B.Sc at Queen’s, I spent some time in pharmaceuticals in the UK and then BC, before deciding on dental school. While in dental school at UBC I met Chris and did some molecular biology work with MMP2 in his lab during my dental school years. After completing my DMD, I left academia and went into private practice in BC and several years after joined the Canadian Forces dental corps. I served as dental officer in Ottawa, Québec City, deployed to Afghanistan, and finally finished in Petawawa, Ontario. I left the CF last summer to start a residency program in endodontics which includes an M.Sc project. Chris agreed to take me back as a graduate student so I will complete the research portion of my program at the CBR working in human dental pulp proteomics.
Parker Jobin
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MD/PhD Student
I completed a BSc(H) in Biochemistry from UBC. Currently, I am working on the combined MD/PhD program here at UBC, continuing the work I began as a student research assistant in the Overall lab. I focus on the expanding roles played by Matrix Metalloproteinases in biology by looking at a novel class of substrates called “moonlighting” proteins. The goal of this research is to reveal new potential targets for therapy and exciting biological pathways necessary for maintenance of normal physiology or that may lead to pathology.

Ed Pryzdial Lab

Rolinda Rolinda Carter
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PhD Candidate

Prior to joining the Pryzdial lab at UBC, I did an BSc (Honours) in Biochemistry and Molecular Biology at Trent University, ON. My research interest lies in understanding the crosstalk between the formation and dissolution of blood clots. Our group has identified that clotting factor Xa (FXa) not only participates in the generation of a clot, but also in its clearance. For my PhD, I investigate the biochemical mechanism of this newly discovered function of FXa with the help of recently approved direct oral anticoagulant drugs.

Methods: chromogenic assays, turbidometric clot-dissolution assays, western and ligand blot analyses, thromboelastography, scanning electron microscopy.

Ulie-Felgenhauer Ulrike Felgenhauer
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PhD Student
Before coming to UBC, I completed a BSc and MSc at Philipps University in Marburg, Germany, where I worked on the pattern recognition receptor RIG-I in the context of Bunyavirus infection. Wanting to continue virology-related research, I am now studying Dengue virus in the Pryzdial lab at UBC. The goal is to understand how anucleate blood cells harbor and replicate Dengue virus, thereby contributing to its severe pathology. By understanding how Dengue virus interacts with the various blood components, we aim to improve pathogen reduction techniques to further transfusion safety.
Frank Lee
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MD/PhD Student

I completed an honours BSc, Health Sciences at McMaster University. I worked with Dr. Howard Chan at the Thrombosis and Atherosclerosis Research Institute in Hamilton, Ontario focusing on designing a turbidometric clotting assay to study the reversal of factor-specific anticoagulants. Currently, I am working towards an MD/PhD degree at UBC, continuing my research interests in blood research with Dr. Edward Pryzdial. My focus is on understanding the physiology of fibrinolysis to develop novel “clot-busting” therapeutics with clinical applications in myocardial infarction and stroke.

Methods: physical in vitro methods (eg. light-scattering assays and thromboelastography) and in vivo murine thrombolysis models.

bryanlin Bryan Lin
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PhD Candidate
My research career started at UBC where I completed my BSc in Microbiology and Immunology with a Co-operative Education option. This degree coupled with my work experience in academic and industrial labs, steered me towards an interest in research, especially in viruses. My next big step is conquering the PhD program in the Department of Pathology and Laboratory Medicine at the Pryzdial lab. My project is focused on investigating how viruses initiate coagulation in the blood by using herpes simplex virus as my model virus.
tseday-zewdu-tegegn1 Tseday Tegagn
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Graduate Student

I studied Biology at the University of the District of Columbia, Washington, DC, USA. After the completion of my undergraduate degree, I received a post baccalaureate research opportunity in the Division of Hematology, Center or BIologics Evaluation and Research, U.S. Food and Drug Administration. After 4 years of great research experience, I came across the Center for Blood Research. It was instant that I felt my research interest and experience were well aligned with the center’s mission. I will be working on “Improving pathogen inactivation: The dengue virus-induced platelet proteome”.

Methods: Virus propagation, Western blotting, Confocal, Proteomics etc

Fabio Rossi Lab

Regan Heng-Zhang
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PhD Candidate

Originally from Vancouver, I studied genetics and biotechnology at the University of Toronto. After working and training in bioinformatics and medical illustration, I am pursuing PhD research in medical genetics. My current research focuses on the role of lysine methyltransferases in the development and regeneration of skeletal muscle and connective tissues.

Methods: genetic modelling, flow cytometry, histology, confocal microscopy, digital droplet PCR, micro-CT scan

Farshad CBR bio Farshad Babaeijandaghi
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PhD Candidate
I got my medical doctoral degree from Tehran University of Medical Sciences, Iran, and currently I am a PhD candidate in Dr. Fabio Rossi’s lab at the Biomedical Research Centre. My PhD project is mainly focused on applying advance technologies (Flow-cytometery, Single-cell digital droplet PCR, RNA-sequencing, Lineage tracing) to understand and elucidate the cellular and molecular mechanisms of tissue repair and fibrosis development using animal models of human disease
Christine Eisner
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PhD Candidate
Joey Phuong Ha
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PhD Candidate

I am a Concordia University B.Sc. graduate, with an Honours degree in Biochemistry. After moving to Vancouver, I worked as an analyst at the Australian Laboratory Services. At the moment, I am a PhD candidate in Genome Science and Technology. My research focuses on the role of histone methyltransferases in acute myeloid leukemia progression. I am also working on the investigation of factors controlling the number of hematopoietic stem cell niche in the bone marrow.

Methods: flow cytometry, genetic modification, in vitro assays, cell transplantation, confocal microscopy, and bioinformatics analysis.

Mark Scott Lab

Linda Yang
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PhD Student

I received my BSc in Life Sciences from Central South University, Changsha, China. I came to UBC and joined the Scott Lab pursuing a PhD in Pathology and Laboratory Medicine. My project aims to develop a novel miRNA-based therapeutic which can enhance the body’s own existing immune system to kill the tumor cells.

Methods: miRNA purification & potency techniques (qPCR, MLR), tissue culture, immune cell phenotyping and subset differentiation (flow cytometry).

Natalie Strynadka Lab

Andrew Alexander
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Masters Student

I graduated with an honours BSc from the University of the Fraser Valley and am currently studying antibiotic resistance in the Strynadka lab. I am particularly interested in determining the regulatory pathways of genes responsible for antibiotic resistance in methicillin resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA).

Methods: Cell-free protein expression, X-ray crystallography, and associated methods in structural biology

Nathanael Caveney
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Masters Student
Jinhong Hu
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PhD Student
I was born in China and came to Canada when I was in the second year my undergraduate. I went to University of Calgary to study biology. At that time I met Dr. Fraser. I stayed in her lab for my Masters and did researches on protein function using macromolecule crystallography. Now I moved to UBC to work with Dr. Strynadka for my PhD.
Franco Ka Kit Li
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Masters Student

I received a BSc in Biochemistry from UBC. Currently, I am working towards solving the atomic structures of several bacterial glycosyltransferases and beta-lactamases in complex with novel inhibitors.

Methods: cell-free expression for production of the membrane-associated glycosyltranserfases

Bronwyn Lyons
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PhD Student
I received my BSc from the University of Guelph (Guelph, Ontario) in Biochemistry (2015). For my fourth-year honours thesis, I had the opportunity to work in Dr. Rod Merrill’s structural biology laboratory, where I studied small protein virulence factors of agricultural importance. I went on to complete my MSc in Dr. Merrill’s lab (2017), and moved to Vancouver to complete my PhD in Dr. Natalie Strynadka’s lab.
Dorothy Majewski
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Masters Student
Sean Workman
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Masters Student
I received a BSc (Hons) in biochemistry from the University of Victoria before coming to UBC. As a member of the Strynadka lab, I am investigating the mechanisms underlying bacterial cell wall synthesis using structural and biophysical techniques.