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2018 Students

Shandra Trantham

Undergrad institute: University of South Florida
B.S. Major: Cell and Molecular Biology
Interests: Friedreich’s Ataxia and similar microsatellite diseases; Gene therapy and gene editing

Paul Wassel
Undergrad institute: University of Florida                                                                                                                                                                                                                     B.S. Major: Microbiology and Cell Science
Interests: Genetics of insect-microbe interactions and gene expression regulation by non-coding RNAs


Maria Anderson
Undergrad institute: University of Detroit Mercy
B.S. Major: Biology
Interests: Neurodegenerative diseases and translational research


Chase Kelley
Undergrad institute: Northeastern University
B.S. Major: Chemical Engineering and Physics
Interests: Experimental and computational molecular biology and genetics, quantitative biology, and bioinformatics


Sadeem Qdaisat
Undergrad institute: University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center
B.S. Major: Clinical Genetics
Interests: Clinical and translational science, focusing on the use of personalized medicine in cancer treatment. Gene editing, Pharmacogenomics, gene therapy, and rare cell detection


Sahana Sindhu
Undergrad institute: SRM University (India)
B.T. Major: Genetic Engineering
Interests: Regeneration and photo aging; approached from different angles such as the self renewal capacity of stem cells and tissue repair.


Vivekananda Budamagunta
Undergrad institute: SRM University (India)
B.T. Major: Genetic Engineering
Interests: Process of aging, molecular hallmarks of aging, ways to tackle aging using natural or synthetic compounds, stem cells, cellular regeneration, parabiosis, etc.


Adalena Nanni
Undergrad institute: University of Pittsburgh
B.S. Major: Bioinformatics
Interests: Bioinformatics, specifically involving genome and sequence analyses


Vincent Colantonio

Undergrad institute: Southern Illinois University
B.S. Major: Plant Biology
Interests: Agricultural Genomics, Plant Microbe Interactions, Biological Systems Engineering, Applied Artificial Intelligence


2017 Students

Brandon Califar
Lab: Robert Ferl and Anna-Lisa Paul, Department of Horticultural Sciences
Undergrad institute: Florida Gulf Coast University
B.S. Major: Biotechnology
Interests: Space Biology, Gene Regulation, and Epigenetics

Elizabeth Delgado
Undergrad institute: University of Nevada, Las Vegas
B.S. Major: Biology, Cell and Molecular concentration
Interests: Using research related to genetic engineering and personalized medicine to find potential protein and genetic therapies

Franjo Ivankovic

Lab: Maurice Swanson, Department of Molecular Genetics and Microbiology
Undergrad institute: University of Florida
B.S. Major: Integrative Biology
B.A. Major: Medical Anthropology
Interests: RNA processing, RNA-protein interactions, short tandem repeats in disease, mammalian development.                                                                                                                               Awards: UF Graduate School Fellowship

Sagadevan, AddelynnAddelynn Sagadevan
Undergrad institute: University of California, Los Angeles
Major: Microbiology, Immunology, and Molecular Genetics
Minor: Biomedical Research
Interests: Translational and regenerative medicine, with a bias toward stem cell biology, gene therapy and tissue engineering


2016 Students

Chandler, LukeLuke Chandler
Undergrad institute: University of Central Florida
Major: Biology
Interests: Evolution, molecular genetics, epigenetics, factors of selection and speciation

Dumeny_LeanneLeanne Dumeny
Undergrad institute: University of Florida
Major: Biochemistry & Molecular Biology
Interests: Personalized medicine in cardiovascular disease, translational research, pharmacogenomics and iPSCs

Hong, Yuan_edYuan Hong
Undergrad institute: Fudan University, China
Major: Genetics & Genomics
Interests: Epigenetics, cancer biology, cell cycle regulatory pathways and fate decisions

Shuipys, Tautvydas_edTautvydas Shuipys
Undergrad institute: Loyola University Chicago
Major: Biology with Molecular Emphasis
Interests: Plant genetics, genetic engineering, biofuel production, evolution, microbial genetics and epigenetics

Silva_TallytaTallyta Silva                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                           Lab: Wilfred Vermerris, Department of Microbiology & Cell Science                                                                                                                                                                                  Undergrad institute: B.A., Federal University of Lavras, Brazil
Major: Biology
Interests: Genomics, molecular genetics and plant breeding 

2015 Students

CF015240_72-3-150x150Enrico Barrozo
Lab: David Bloom, Department of Molecular Genetics and Microbiology
Undergrad Institute: Augsburg College
Major: Biology
Interests: Human diseases caused by persistent viral infections or mutations within genomic DNA.
Awards: UF Graduate School Fellowship (formerly Alumni Fellowship), McKnight Doctoral

553296_3040928082743_183011045_n-167x210Chandra Earl
Lab: Akito Kawahara and Rob Guralnick, Florida Museum of Natural History
Undergrad Institute: University of Florida
Major: Biotechnology
Minor: Bioinformatics
Interests: Bioinformatics, software development, species evolution, phylogenetics

Head_shot_Aishwarya_Foto-150x150Aishwarya Gurumurthy
Lab: Jorg Bungert, Department of Biochemistry & Molecular Biology
Undergrad Institute: Manipal University, India
Major: Biotechnology
Masters: Medical Biotechnology
Interests: Molecular and human disease genetics, gene regulation in cancer, long range
chromatin interactions.


Yuning-Liu-177x210Yuning Liu
Lab: Yuqing Li, Department of Neurology
Undergrad Institute: Beijing Forestry University, China
Major: Biotechnology
Interests: Diabetes, genomics, transcriptomics, proteomics, metabolomics.

10177987_793961647282525_8273270382793193459_n-150x150Brittney Otero
McKnight Doctoral Fellow and Graduate Student Fellow
Lab: Eric Wang, Department of Molecular Genetics and Microbiology.
Undergrad Institute: University of Florida
Major: Microbiology and cell science
Interests: Translational work on neurodegenerative, and neuromuscular diseases. Disease
pathology, mechanism, and possible therapeutics.
Honors and Awards: GSF, McKnight Fellowship

headshot1-206x210Taylor Paisie
Lab: Marco Salemi, Department of Pathology, Immunology, and Laboratory Medicine
Undergrad Institute: Florida State University
Major: Biology
Minor: Chemistry and criminology
Interests: Infectious disease, viral genetics, gene vector therapy.

2014 Students

UFGI-DavidDavid A. Friedman
Lab: James Olmstead, Department of Horticultural Sciences
Undergrad Institute: Harriet L. Wilkes Honors College, Florida Atlantic University
Major: Pre-med
Interests: Working with microorganism such as yeast and E. coli, particularly in studying such things as diseases, genetic disorders, and aging; bioinformatics.

UFGI-KeonKeon D. Wimberly
Lab: Keith Choe, Department of Biology
Undergrad Institute: Xavier University of Louisiana
Major: Biology
Graduate Institute: University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill School of Medicine
Interests: Gene Therapy, Bioinformatics, Drug Delivery, Molecular Genetics
Awards: UF Graduate School Fellowship (formerly Alumni Fellowship), McKnight Predoctoral Fellowship

UFGI-KiaKia C. Fuller
Lab: Connie Mulligan, Department of Anthropology
Undergrad Institute: Florida State University
Major: Biological Sciences
Minor: Chemistry
Interests: Genetics of disease, particularly the genetics of cancer

UFGI-WeiWei Ni
Lab: Lizi Wu, Molecular Genetics & Microbiology
Undergrad Institute: Fujian Normal University, Fuzhou
Major: Biology Science
Graduate Institute: Fujian Normal University, Fuzhou
Major: Developmental Biology
Interests: Molecular biology of pathogen and antigenicity analysis of some candidate proteins; epigenetic alterations related to carcinogenesis, like DNA methylation, which can serve as the biomarker of cancer initiating and metastasis.

2013 Students


UFGI-SolalehSolaleh Khoramian Tusi
Lab: Laura Ranum, Center for NeuroGenetics
Favorite Courses: Advanced Genetics
Undergrad Institute: Tehran Tarbiat Moallem University
Major: Cellular and Molecular Biology
Interest: I am interested in using molecular biology to answer the fundamental questions, such as finding mechanisms controlling gene expression.  I’d like to work with stem cells or knock out models to find out the problems in different disorders such as cancer, etc. I think using basic science in translational research and finding treatment for genetic disorders is really interesting and demanded.

UFGI-DVFDorianmarie Vargas-Franco
Lab: James Resnick, Department of Molecular Genetics & Microbiology
Favorite Courses: Advanced Genetics and Bioinformatics
Undergrad Institute: University of Puerto Rico at Cayey
Major: Biology
Awards: The Bridge to the Doctorate Fellowship, McKnight Fellowship
Interest: I’m interested in Biomedical research with a focus in Developmental Genetics, specifically in epigenetics. My main focus is in genetics disorders and congenital diseases such as Angelman and Prader-Willi Syndromes.