Sherri Osborne-Lawrence, MS
Senior Research Scientist and Lab Manager
Sherri was born in Texas and has lived here all of her life. She received her BA degree in Biology from Austin College in Sherman, TX, and an MS degree in Molecular & Cell Biology from UT Dallas. She has worked in five laboratories at UT Southwestern Medical Center. Sherri's initial research projects involved positional cloning of genes involved in Rheumatoid Arthritis and Early Onset Familial Breast Cancer. After a few years assisting with the final stages of sequencing for the Human Genome Project, she focused on discovering how endothelial cell dysfunction leads to cardiovascular disease, with particular interests in estrogen modulation as well as the effects of C-reactive protein. Sherri joined the Zigman lab in 2006 as Senior Research Scientist and Lab Manager, and is now expanding her interests to include ghrelin and its effects on metabolic pathways.
Angela Walker, BS
Angela joined the Zigman lab in January 2011. She grew up in Houston, Texas, then moved to Minneapolis to attend the University of Minnesota on a division I gymnastics scholarship. She received her BS after majoring in Neuroscience and minoring in Psychology, along with being recognized as an Academic All-American Athlete by the National Association of Gymnastics for her accomplishments in gymnastics as well as school. After working in a lab as an undergraduate studying the effects of drugs such as morphine on the brain, she decided to pursue a PhD studying neuroscience. She now has an MS in biology after completing her qualifying exam in the Neuroscience Graduate Program at UTSW. For her thesis project, she is investigating molecular mechanisms and neural circuitry involved in the development of psychiatric disorders such as depression, addiction, and stress-induced eating disorders. Angela cherishes her family and close friends more than anything, and is thankful for the support her parents have always provided.
Won-Mee Park, PhD
Postdoctoral Research Fellow
Born and raised in South Korea, Won-Mee studied neuroscience in Daegu, earning a master’s degree in Biology at Kyungpook National University. After one year of marriage, she moved to the United States to get a PhD in Neuroscience. In her progress towards the degree, she has gone through some difficult struggles at times, including having two kids and living through Hurricane Katrina. However, with several thoughtful and caring mentors, such as Drs. Mize, Corriveau, Belousov, and Fontes, she successfully finished her PhD studies. Her doctoral research, titled “Interplay of chemical neurotransmitters regulates developmental increase in electrical synapses” was completed at the University of Kansas Medical Center. Won-Mee joined the Zigman lab for postdoctoral training focusing on the study of the regulation of ghrelin secretion and action in September 2011.
Aki Uchida, PhD
Postdoctoral Research Fellow
Aki was born in Malaysia and spent the first half of her childhood there. She then spent the remainder of her childhood in Japan. Aki received her B.A. in Chemistry from Carleton College in 2006. She spent a year in a chemistry graduate program at the University of Southern California before deciding to change her research focus. She completed her PhD December 2011 at Purdue University in the Interdisciplinary Life Science Program (PULSe). Aki was mentored by Dr. Kimberly Buhman in the Department of Nutrition Sciences and studied the regulation of intestinal triglyceride metabolism. She joined the Zigman lab for her postdoctoral training in January 2012 and has been focusing her studies on the mechanisms responsible for changed enteroendocrine cell function following Roux-en-Y gastric bypass.
Qian Wang, PhD
Postdoctoral Research Fellow
Qian was born and grew up in Shenyang, the northeast part of China. In 2002, she moved to Shanghai which is her favorite city, to attend the Shanghai Jiaotong University for her bachelors degree in biotechnology. In 2006, she decided to come to the US and where she pursued a PhD at Pennsylvania State University and there met her dearest boyfriend and now husband, a boy from Shanghai. In the middle of her graduate studies, Qian moved to New Orleans with her supervisor Dr. Matthew Whim to finish her PhD thesis on adrenal physiology. She received a PhD in Cell and Developmental Biology from Penn State in 2011. Although during her PhD training, she worked mostly with the peripheral system, she developed a great interest in exploring the mysterious world of the brain. Qian joined the Zigman lab in Feb 2012, and her studies have focused on the role of central ghrelin in feeding and mood. She loves traveling and finding delicious food everywhere. Cantonese, French and Japanese foods are her top choices.
Bharath Mani, PhD
Postdoctoral Research Fellow
Bharath was born and raised in Namakkal, a small town in the southern state of Tamil Nadu, India. Bharath’s initial training was at Tamil Nadu Veterinary and Animal Sciences University in Chennai, India, where he earned a BVSc in Veterinary Sciences and an MS in Pharmacology. Afterwards, Bharath worked as a research scientist in India, where he was involved in conducting pre-clinical efficacy and toxicity studies of new chemical entities to treat cardiovascular diseases. In July of 2006, Bharath moved to Chicago and enrolled in the pharmacology graduate program at Loyola University Chicago. Bharath worked in the laboratory of Dr. Kenneth Byron to understand the regulation of vascular tone by ion channels in smooth muscle cells to receive his PhD in 2012. To complement his training in cardiovascular pharmacology, Bharath wanted a broad-based training in metabolic syndrome, an important contributor to cardiovascular risk. So, he joined the Zigman lab in May 2012 and has been working to understand mechanisms regulating ghrelin secretion and action. Bharath spends a lot of time with his family and is interested in exploring different cultures and food. Bharath is a profound follower of cricket, the most revered sport in India.
Brittany Mason, PhD
Senior Research Associate
Brittany is a native Texan and started her science career during her undergraduate work at Southwestern University in Georgetown, TX. While working with Fay Guarraci, PhD, she studied female sexual motivation in rats and gained a passion for behavioral neuroscience. She continued on to obtain her PhD in Psychiatry from King’s College London where she studied the movement of stress hormones across the blood-brain barrier under the supervision of Sarah Thomas, PhD, and Carmine Pariante, MD, PhD. She recently completed her postdoctoral fellowship in the lab of Michael Lutter, MD, PhD, a translational neuroscience laboratory focused on identifying the molecular and cellular bases of eating disorder-related behaviors, using both pre-clinical animal models and clinical human patient populations. Brittany joined the Zigman lab as a Senior Research Associate, where she hopes that her scientific experience can help facilitate individual projects and overall lab progress. She is a passionate advocate for community awareness, understanding, and support of the sciences. When not in the lab, her love of the natural world extends to cooking gourmet meals with her fiancée and digging around in her garden.
Former Lab Members
Mario Perello, PhD - Postdoctoral Research Fellow 2/2008 - 3/2010 - Mario is currently an Associate Investigator at the Laboratory of Neurophysiology, Multidisciplinary Institute of Cell Biology (IMBICE) in La Plata, Argentina
Ichiro Sakata, PhD - Postdoctoral Research Fellow 3/2007 - 3/2011 - Ichiro is currently a Lecturer at Saitama University in Saitama, Japan
Jen-Chieh (Jay) Chuang, PhD - Postdoctoral Research Fellow 8/2008 - 5/2011 - Jay is currently a Scientist at Reata Pharmaceutical Company in Irving, TX.
Paul K. Piper Jr, MD - Postdoctoral Research Fellow/Clinical Fellow in Diabetes, Endocrinology and Metabolism, 2009-2011. Paul is currently in private practice as an Endocrinologist in The Woodlands, TX.
Daniela Pereira Derderian, PhD, PharMD – Postdoctoral Research Fellow 5/2010 - 7/2012 – Daniela is currently an Assistant Professor in Biological Sciences at the School of Math and Science at Wayland Baptist University in Plainview, TX
Siegfried Meier - Research Assistant II, 3/09 - 3/10
Sherry Rovinsky - Research Assistant, 2007-2009. Graduate Student, 2010-2011.
Chelsea Migura – Research Assitant I, 3/2010 – 7/2012
Jakub Woloszyn - UTSW Medical Student, Summer Research 2008
Neha Chaudhary - UTSW Medical Student, Summer Research 2009
Gregory Wallingford, Jr. - 2009 Summer Undergraduate Research Fellowship student
Anna Kuperman - 2010 Summer Undergraduate Research Fellowship student
Shloka Raghavan - 2011 Summer Undergraduate Research Fellowship student
Carolyn Chakuroff – 2012 Summer Undergraduate Research Fellowship student
Imikomobong (Micky) Ibia - 2012 MSTP Summer Undergraduate Research Fellowship student