Training in Systems Biology

Systems Biology Graduate Program

Our program is designed to train students from diverse disciplinary backgrounds in the cutting-edge research techniques that comprise the interdisciplinary research of modern cell biology. Students are provided with rigorous cross training in areas of mathematical, physical, and computational sciences and biology. Systems Biology students take courses, attend seminars and work on interdisciplinary research projects to broaden and strengthen their abilities to do quantitative cell biology research.

The Systems Biology area of concentration is based within the Richard D. Berlin Center for Cell Analysis and Modeling (CCAM) at UConn Health.

Graduate Students

Bandita Adhikari Advisor: Reinhard Laubenbacher
Aniruddha ChattarajAni Chattaraj Advisor: Les Loew

Education: MS (Chemistry), IIT Bombay, India
About: Before joining CCAM, Ani worked on building mathematical models of stochastic gene expression in induced pluripotent stem cells. Ani has been building biophysical models of molecular clustering process of multivalent signaling molecules and how this clustering leads to the formation of biomolecular condensates.

Yuezhe LiYuezhe Advisor: Yi Wu
Education: BS, Huazhong Univ of Sci & Tech (Wuhan, China); MS, Illinois State University
About: Before joining the graduate program at UConn Health, Yuezhe studied mathematics and statistics and worked on data mining projects. Her research focuses on how primary cilia modulate receptor signaling and tries to establish molecular mechanisms that link diabetes to ciliopathy (a group of rare diseases).
Lauren Marazzi

Advisor: Paola Vera-Licona
Education: BA, Connecticut College
About: Lauren Marazzi is a 5th year MD/PhD student at UConn Health. Before joining UConn Health, Lauren studied Bioinformatics and worked on projects focused on Notch Pathway signaling and transcriptome analysis in ambystoma mexicanum. Her research focuses on quantitative analysis of chemotherapy resistance reversion and cancer reversion in triple negative breast cancer using mathematical modeling and control theory.
Joseph Masison

Masison

Advisor: Pedro Mendes
Education: BS Neurobiology and Physiology, BS Computer Science, University of Maryland
About: Joseph Masison is a 4th year MD/PhD student at UConn Health. Before joining UConn Health, he studied neuroscience with bioinformatics and computational modeling. His current research focus is on reproducibility in computational studies and quantitative analysis of duodenal iron metabolism using mathematical modeling.
Milda StanislauskasGraduateStudent Advisor: Yi Wu
Education: BA/MA Hunter College
About: Before joining the graduate program at UConn Health, Milda worked at a skin disease research center studying Merkel cells, which are mechanoreceptive cells responsible for sensing light touch. Her research interests include how cells sense physical cues from the external environment and convert them into chemical signals, and how these signals affect various cellular processes, and disease pathogenesis.
Thank you to Milda for sharing her humor and drawing skills by adding such great cartoon art around CCAM.

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Postdoctoral Fellows

Meagan Cauble Advisor: Ji Yu
Nizam Ud Din

Nizam

Advisor: Ji Yu

Education: PhD, (Molecular Biochemistry), Hanyang University, Korea
About: During PhD, Nizam studied the molecular markers which contribute to the enhanced metastatic ability of triple negative breast cancer. After joining CCAM as a postdoctoral fellow in the Yu lab, he used SH2-domain containing protein probes to study the behavior of molecular condensates on the cell membrane via super-resolution imaging STORM. He also developed a multiplexed immunostaining imaging process which overcomes the limitation of conventional immunofluorescent imaging of maximum five targets due to spectral overlap. Currently he is setting up a fluidic system where this multiplexed immunostaining and imaging process will be fully automated.

Prem Shresta Advisor: Ji Yu

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Alumni

Name Degree Year Advisor Current Position
Judy Bloom PhD 2020 Loew/
Adam Lafontaine PhD 2020 Mayer Research Associate, Metrum
Russel Posner MD/PhD 2019 Laubenbacher MD student, UConn Health
Abhijit Deb Roy PhD 2018 Wu Postdoc, Johns Hopkins Medicine
Clifford Locke MD/PhD 2018 Wu Internal Medicine Resident, Dartmouth-Hitchcock Medical Center
Ahmed Elmokadem PhD 2017 Yu Research Scientist, Metrum
Marc Rigatti MD/PhD 2017 Kafka/Moraru Emergency Medicine Resident, UConn Health
Olena Marchenko PhD 2017 Loew/Dodge  Bioinformatics Engineer, Simons Foundation 
Sofya Borinskaya PhD 2015 Loew Assistant Professor, Saint Elizabeth University, NJ 
Ronghua Yang MD/PhD Loew/Liang  Internal Medicine Resident, Rutgers Medical School
Erika Hoyos-Ramirez PhD  2014 Loew Postdoc, Yale School of Medicine 
Akeisha Belgrave PhD  2013 Wolgemuth Assistant Professor, Harrisburg University
Eunji Kim PhD 2013  Yu Managing Director, Alzheimer’s Consulting & Services 
Jonathon Ditlev PhD 2012 Mayer/Loew Assistant Professor, University of Toronto 
Sherry-Ann Brown MD/PhD 2012 Loew Assistant Professor, Medical College of Wisconsin