2014 HHMI Med into Grad Scholars

Varsha Bhargava, Genetics & Development Graduate Program
Dissertation research: Characterization of Rbfox1 mediated translational regulation (M. Buszczak)
Summer clinical research: Clinical presentation and management of patients with Cystic Fibrosis (R. Jain)


Marissa Co, Neuroscience Graduate Program
Dissertation research: Role of FOXP2 in brain development and Autism Spectrum Disorder (G. Konopka)
Summer clinical research: Linking visuomotor deficits to cognitive impairments in patients with Autism Spectrum Disorder (M. Mosconi, S. White)


Pouriska Kivanany, Biomedical Engineering Graduate Program
Dissertation research: Rho inhibitor on corneal scarring (M. Petroll)
Summer clinical research: To study the efficacy and safety of 10 mg Lampalizumab intravitreal injections in treating patients with geographic atrophy secondary to age-related macular degeneration (R. Ufret-Vincenty)


Ashley Lakoduk, Cell Regulation Graduate Program
Dissertation research: Dynamics of Integrin recycling in metastatic lung cancer cells (S. Schmid)
Summer clinical research: Expose the institutional barriers to cancer clinical trials by identifying studies differentially opened at Simmons Comprehensive Cancer Center (SCCC) and other UTSW-affiliates with the affiliated safety-net county hospital, Parkland Health and Hospital System, as well at the rationale for the disparity and barriers (D. Gerber)


Krishna Luitel, Cancer Biology Graduate Program
Dissertation research: Proton irradiation increases invasive carcinoma in the LA1 K-ras mutant mouse: Dissecting underlying molecular mechanisms (J. Shay, W. Wright)
Summer clinical research: Clinical and translational concepts in genitourinary malignancies (K. Courtney)


Jin Suk Park, Cancer Biology Graduate Program
Dissertation research: Modulation of cancer cell signal transduction and metabolism in respect to heterogeneous morphogenesis and gene expression through external manipulation of single cell chemistry and mechanics (G. Danuser)
Summer clinical research: Understanding the clinical research involving C13-labelled sodium acetate infusion and cancer metabolism analysis on a case-by-case basis (E. Maher)


Shruthy Suresh, Cancer Biology Graduate Program
Dissertation research: Unraveling the molecular mechanism of tumor suppressive activity of nuclear receptor coactivator 1 in hepatocellular carcinoma (K. O’Donnell)
Summer clinical research: The clinical and genetic implications of Lynch Syndrome (M. Begg)


I-Hui Wu, Cancer Biology Graduate Program
Dissertation research: Regulation of aberrant protein production in cancer (P. Thomas)
Summer clinical research: Gain exposure to clinical medicine of patients with neurofibromatosis (L. Le)

2013 HHMI Med into Grad Scholars

Group photo

Curtis Allred, Cancer Biology Graduate Program
Dissertation research: Identification of the receptor for cancer-specific Peptide 15.2 (Kathlynn Brown, Ph.D. )
Summer clinical research: Participate in writing the IRB protocol and consent form for a new study in the field of gastro-intestinal cancers (Muhammad Beg, M.D.)


Sarah Elkin, Cell Regulation Graduate Program
Dissertation research: The role of dynamin in invadapodia (Sandra Schmid, Ph.D.)
Summer clinical research: To determine if extracellular volume and vascular resistance contribute to intradialytic hypertension in patients undergoing hemodialysis (Robert Toto,M.D., Peter Van Buren, M.D.)


Julia Hankins, Immunology Graduate Program
Dissertation research: Utilization of haploid embryonic stem cells for identification of novel genes or interactions (Bruce Beutler, M.D.)
Summer clinical research: To determine the gene frequency of polymorphisms that are associated with increased impulsivity among acetaminophen acute liver failure patients compared to population controls (William Lee, M.D.)


Jessica Hicks, Integrative Biology Graduate Program
Dissertation research: RNAi in the mammalian cell nucleus (David Corey, Ph.D.)
Summer clinical research: To analyze demographic and clinical characteristics of type 2 diabetes patient from a PIoglitazone clinical trial and correlate the patient clinical characteristics with metabolic parameters (Ildiko Lingvay, M.D.)


Hema Manjunath, Genetics & Development Graduate Program
Dissertation research: Investigation of the regulation and function of non-coding RNAs in cancer (Joshua Mendell, M.D., Ph.D.)
Summer clinical research: To gain exposure to clinical medicine and clinical research regarding hepatocellular carcinoma (Amit Singal, M.D.)


Xiaolei Shi, Cancer Biology Graduate Program
Dissertation research: Metabolomics investigation of metastatic and non-metastatic melanomas (Ralph DeBerardinis, M.D., Ph.D.)
Summer clinical research: To study the molecular evolution of neurofibroma tumorigenesis (Lu Le, M.D., Ph.D.)


Alexandra Willcockson, Integrative Biology Graduate Program
Dissertation research: The molecular mechanisms of infection-mediated preterm birth (Mala Mahendroo, Ph.D.)
Summer clinical research: 17 progesterone and preterm labor; prospective MRI evaluation of cardiac function in pregnancy; comparison of regional analgesia in length of labor (Kenneth Leveno, M.D., and group)


Paul Yenerall, Cancer Biology Graduate Program
Dissertation research: RNAi of nuclear receptors, their coregulators, and chromatin remodeling enzymes in lung cancer (Ralf Kittler, Ph.D., John Minna, M.D.)
Summer clinical research: Phase II trial of AP26113 in anaplastic thyroid cancer (Saad Khan, M.D.)

2012 HHMI Med into Grad Scholars

Daniel Araujo, Neuroscience Graduate Program
Dissertation research: Investigating the role of FOXP1 in brain development (G. Konopka)
Summer clinical research: Establish and characterize neuronal cell lines derived from reprogrammed fibroblasts that are taken from both psychotic (psychotic-bipolar and schizophrenic) and normal control probands. (C. Tamminga)


Haocheng Cai, Immunology Graduate Program
Dissertation research: To identify critical pathogen-sensing proteins by forward-genetics approach, and investigating the ligand-receptor interaction via chemical approaches (Z. Chen)
Summer clinical research: Learn how the autonomic system dysfunction is diagnosed and evaluated in clinical trials, and establish the database
containing preexisting patient information in aims to recruiting research patients and future prognosis. (S. Vernino)


Molly Gillam, Cancer Biology Graduate Program
Dissertation research: Radiosensitization therapy for glioblastomas. Use nanoparticles to deliver radiosensitizing drugs to glioblastoma (S. Burma).
Summer clinical research: Phase II clinical trial of “Hippocampal-Avoiding Whole Brain Irradiation with Simultaneous Integrated Boost for Treatment of Brain Metastases”. (R. Timmerman)


Ji Mi Kim, Cancer Biology Graduate Program
Dissertation research: Characterize cancer cell type specific hits identified by genome wide siRNA screening. (M. White).
Summer clinical research: Current therapies for lung cancer and their side effects (J. Schiller)


Ryan Laranger, Genetics & Development Graduate Program
Dissertation research: Regenerative medicine (J. Shay, W. Wright)
Summer clinical research: Characterize resident T cells in the skin of Lupus patients to identify disease and progression biomarkers for Systemic Lupus Erythmatosus (B. Chong)


Michael Ramirez, Cancer Biology Graduate Program
Dissertation research: Phenotypic characterization of colon cancer cell lines (S. Altschuler, L. Wu)
Summer clinical research: Clinical course of sporadic colorectal cancer (S. Gupta)


Junyao Ren, Genetics & Development Graduate Program
Dissertation research: Innate Immunity (Z. Chen)
Summer clinical research: Analysis of endothelial cells in rheumatoid arthritis (D. Karp, E. Blair Solow)


Mary Topalovski, Cancer Biology Graduate Program
Dissertation research: Develop therapeutics to target factors involved in crosstalk between the tumor and its microenvironment (R. Brekken)
Summer clinical research: Gastrointestinal and pancreatic cancers (M. Beg)

2011 HHMI Med into Grad Scholars

Adam Coster, Cell Regulation Graduate Program
Dissertation research: The development of high-throughput live-cell imaging technologies for quantifying the heterogeneity of gene expression in cell populations (S. Altschuler & L. Wu) 
Summer clinical research: Differentiate the contributions of the RYG bariatric surgery and its requisite drastic dietary changes on the amelioration of diabetes (I. Lingvay)


Patrick Dospoy, Cancer Biology Graduate Program
Dissertation research: Elucidating the potential of c-myc as a novel therapeutic target in non-small cell lung cancer (J. Minna)
Summer clinical research: I-SPY 2 Trial, a phase II, adaptive clinical trial for locally advanced breast cancer (D. Euhus)


Ryan McNamara, Molecular Microbiology Graduate Program
Dissertation research: Transcriptional regulation of the human immunodeficiency virus as a function of post-translational modifications to the HIV viral protein tat (I. D’Orso). 
Summer clinical research: Evaluate the efficacy of the addition of protease and/or polymerase inhibitors to the current standard of care treatment for patients infected with the hepatitis C virus (W. Lee)


Jessica Perez, Neuroscience Graduate Program
Dissertation research: Activity-dependent synaptic strengthening between the dentate gyrus and CA3 in schizophrenic vs. nonschizophrenic post mortum tissue (C. Tamminga)
Summer clinical research: Diffusion tensor imaging to identify patients with diffuse axonal injury (R. Diaz-Arrastia)


Lacy Reynolds, Cancer Biology Graduate Program
Dissertation research: How the omega-3 fatty acid docosahexaenoic acid (DHA) can be administered intravenously in high doses using a biocompatible low density lipoprotein (LDL) nanoparticle platform to treat hepatocellular carcinoma (I. Corbin)
Summer clinical research: Retrospective analysis of a database of nephrolianthisis and osteoporosis patients (O. Moe)


Katie Schaukowitch, Neuroscience Graduate Program
Dissertation research: Looking at the role of non-coding RNA in activity-dependent gene expression (T. Kim)
Summer clinical research: Determining the underlying mechanisms of schizophrenia (C. Tamminga)


Linda Williams, Genetics & Development Graduate Program
Dissertation research: Following up on a possible novel source of adipocyte progenitors (J. Graff)
Summer clinical research: Lipodystrophy (A. Garg)


Lu Zhang, Cancer Biology Graduate Program
Dissertation research: Development of therapeutics targeting truncated Adenomatous polyposis coli (J. Shay)
Summer clinical research: To determine whether exposure to high sodium dialysate or fluid removal during hemodialysis will cause intradialytic hypertension (R. Toto)

2010 HHMI Med into Grad Scholars


Chi-Lun Chang, Integrative Biology Graduate Program
Dissertation research: Study the mechanisms of store-operated calcium entry and endoplasmic reticulum-plasma membrane junction formation (J. Liou); Committee: O. Moe, M. Roth, H. Yin
Summer clinical research: Retrospective analysis to understand the etiology increased uric acid kidney stone formation in Hmongs in Minnesota (O. Moe)
Bench to Bedside: Mineral disorders and questions related to Ca2+ signaling (O. Moe, K. Sakhaee, N. Maalouf)


Maithili Dalvi, Cancer Biology Graduate Program
Dissertation research: Cancer stem cells (J. Minna); Committee: R. Kittler, M. Roth, J. Shay
Summer clinical research: Validate the use of subcutaneous injection of non-radioiodinated Iothalamate for measurement of glomerular filtration rate (R. Toto)
Bench to Bedside: Lung cancer (J. Schiller, D. Gerber)


Cyndi Morales, Integrative Biology Graduate Program
Dissertation research: Autophagy and cardiac remodeling (J. Hill); Committee: B. Rothermel, B. Levine, A. Turer, H. Yin
Summer clinical research: Cardiovascular, cardiopulmonary and cerebrovascular studies in the Institute for Exercise and Environmental Medicine (B. Levine)
Bench to Bedside: Heart failure (M. Drazner, J. Hill) 


Rohin Moza, Biomedical Engineering Graduate Program, Division of Applied Science
Dissertation research: Deep tissue optical imaging of normal and pathologic samples (M. DiMaio)


Y. Nguyen, Molecular Microbiology Graduate Program
Dissertation research: Quorum sensing regulation of virulence genes in enterohemorrhagic Escherichia coli (V. Sperandio); Committee: N. Alto, K., Gardner, L. Hooper
Summer clinical research: Renal failure in cirrhosis (D. Rockey)
Bench to Bedside: Understanding of human-pathogen interactions can translate into therapeutic development (M. Shiloh 


Austin Potts, Integrative Biology Graduate Program 
Dissertation research: The role of small intestinal gluconeogenesis in Reux en Y gastric bypass mediated resolution of type II diabetes mellitus (S. Burgess); Committee:
Summer clinical research: Changes in insulin sensitivity, glucose processing, and adipose distribution in bariatric surgery patients with and without type 2 diabetes (I. Lingvay)
Bench to Bedside: Type II Diabetes Melitus (I. Lingvay).


Anju Sreelatha, Biological Chemistry Graduate Program
Dissertation research: Characterization of vibrio parahaemolyticus effector, VopQ (K. Orth); Committee: B. Tu, J. Goodman, M. Shiloh
Summer clinical research: Hepatitis and acute liver injury (W. Lee)
Bench to Bedside: Study of Helicobacter pylori infections and treatment (B. Cryer).


Yinxin Zhang, Integrative Biology Graduate Program
Dissertation research: Intracellular cholesterol transport and regulation (M. Brown, J. Goldstein); Committee: P. Thomas, J. Seeman, M. Roth
Bench to Bedside: Metabolic diseases (L. Engelking).


Mian Zhou, Integrative Biology Graduate Program
Dissertation research: Circadian rhythm (Y. Liu); Committee: B. Tu, J. Takahashi, A. Zinn
Summer clinical research: Magnetic resonance imaging markers in traumatic brain injury (R. Diaz-Arrastia)
Bench to Bedside: Sleep disorder (J. Herman).

2009 HHMI Med into Grad Scholars

Ling Cai, Integrative Biology Graduate Program
Dissertation research: Use yeast metabolic cycle (YMC) as a system to study metabolic control of growth and proliferation (B. Tu); Committee: Y. Liu, B. Li, R. DeBerardinis, E. Ross
Summer clinical research: Diabetic nephropathy (R. Toto)
Bench to Bedside: Renal cell carcinoma (J. Brugarolas)


Qiuyue Chen, Integrative Biology Graduate Program
Dissertation research: Host factors involved in Hepatitis C virus replication and cholesterol metabolism (J. Ye); Committee: G. Liang, J. Pfeiffer, Z. Chen, M. Jain
Summer clinical research: Long term Hepatitis C antiviral treatment against cirrohosis (W. Lee)
Bench to Bedside: HIV vaccine trial (M. Jain)


Matthew Cummings, Integrative Biology Graduate Program
Dissertation research: Treatment of multiple sclerosis by modulating Notch and cell surface signaling in cells of the immune system (T. Eagar); Committee: D. Farrar, A. Eisch, N. Karandikar
Summer clinical research: Early events in the pathogenesis of autoimmune disease (N. Olsen)
Bench to Bedside: Multiple sclerosis diagnosis and treatment (A. Courtney, W. Castro, D. Graves)


Adebimpe Kasumu, Neuroscience Graduate Program; graduated: April 2012 (time to degree: 3 yrs. 7 months)
Dissertation research: The role of deranged calcium signaling in the pathogenesis of spinocerebellar ataxia type 2 (I. Bezprozvanny); Committee: S. Cannon, R. Joho, E. Kavalali;
Summer clinical research: Biomarkers and behavioral assessment of schizophrenia (C. Tamminga)
Bench to Bedside: Parkinson’s disease, cerebellar ataxias (R. Dewey)


Victoria Ulrich, Integrative Biology Graduate Program
Dissertation research: Determine the role of ApoER2 in the endothelial phenotype in Cardiovascular Disease (P. Shaul, C Mineo); Committee: P. Thorpe, J. Herz, H. Yanagisawa
Summer clinical research: Changes in insulin sensitivity, glucose processing, and adipose distribution in bariatric surgery patients with and without type 2 diabetes (I. Lingvay)
Bench to Bedside: Cardiovascular disease (A. Khera, A. Rohatgi)


Xi Wu, Integrative Biology Graduate Program; graduated: Aug. 2011 (time to degree: 3 yrs. 11 months)
Dissertation research: Molecular mechanism of mitochondria turnover (B. Tu); Committee: Y. Liu, R. DeBerardinis, S. McKnight 
Summer clinical research: Congenital lipodystrophy (A. Garg)
Bench to Bedside: Pediatric metabolic diseases (R. DeBerardinis)

2008 HHMI Med into Grad Scholars

Khrishen Cunnusamy, Integrative Biology Graduate Program; graduated April 2011 (time to degree: 3 yrs. 7 months)
Dissertation research: Role of interleukin 17A in the maintenance of corneal immune privilege (J. Niederkorn); Committee: N. Karandikar, P. Chen, N. Street, H. Yin. 
Summer clinical research: Acetaminophen induced hepatotoxicity (W. Lee)
Bench to Bedside: Age-related macular degeneration (R. Ufret-Vincenty)


Michael Fine, Integrative Biology Graduate Program; graduated Nov. 2011 (time to degree: 4 yrs. 3 months)
Dissertation research: Investigate and determine mechanisms by which large-scale massive endocytic responses (MEND) may occur (D. Hilgemann); Committee: S. Cannon, J. Albanesi, R. Hiesinger, H. Yin
Summer clinical research: Pathophysiology of kidney stone formation (O. Moe)
Bench to Bedside: Heart failure (J. Hill)


Julio Ruiz, Integrative Biology Graduate Program
Dissertation research: Define the molecular basis for iron- and oxygen-dependent regulation of IRP2; define the biological role for Fbx15 (R. Bruick); Committee: J. Garcia, S. Burgess, B. Tu 
Summer clinical research: Physical training at low oxygen level (Ben Levine)
Bench to Bedside: Iron deficiency anemia (G. Buchanan)


Misty Shields, Integrative Biology Graduate Program; graduated Nov. 2011 (time to degree: 4 yrs. 3 months)
Dissertation research: Identification and validation of response signatures for first-line adjuvant chemotherapy in non-small cell lung cancer xenografts (J. Minna); Committee: R. Brekken, M. Cobb, P. Thorpe, H. Yin 
Summer clinical research: Targeted therapy for primary biliary cirrhosis patients (M. Mayo)
Bench to Bedside: Lung cancer (J. Schiller)