medical scientist training program

recent and upcoming dissertation defenses

December 2016

Sarah Hsu (CAMB)
December 8, 11:00, Smilow 10-146
Title: Role of bromodomain and extraterminal motif proteins in transcription and chromatin architecture
Advisor: Gerd Blobel

Utpal Sandesara (Anthropology)
December 14, 12:00, location TBA
Title: TBA
Advisors: Philippe Bourgois and Adriana Petryna

Nick Iacobelli (Anthropology)
December 14, 2:00, University Museum, Room 345
Title: Wards of the State: Care and Custody in a Pennsylvania Prison
Advisor: Philippe Bourgois

Krishna Vijayendran (GCB)
December 19, 3:00, Austrian Aud, CRB
Title: TBA
Advisor: Jeff Saven

Justin Becker (CAMB)
December 21, 1:00, Rubenstein Aud, Smilow
Tentative title: The human heterochromatin landscape: genomic subtypes, bound proteins, and contributions to cell identity maintenance
Advisor: Ken Zaret

November 2016

Monica Liu (BMB)
November 2, 10:00, Rubenstein Aud, Smilow
Tentative title: Deciphering the TETrad of epigenetic cytosine modifications
Advisor: Rahul Kohli

Alice Ford (Neuroscience)
November 7, 2:30, Class of 62, JMB
Tentative title: Mechanisms and modifiers of IBMPFD/ALS linked hnRNPA1 and hnRNPA2 misfolding and toxicity
Advisor: Jim Shorter

Hoameng Ung (Bioengineering)
November 17, noon, 307 Levine
Title: Mining Biomarkers of Epilepsy from Large-Scale Intracranial Electroencephalography
Advisor Brian Litt

October 2016

Eric Mukherjee (CAMB)
October 3, 1:00, Rubenstein Aud, Smilow
TItle: Lineage tracing of subclass-specific B cell repertoires in Pemphigus Vulgaris
Advisor: Aimee Payne

Sydney Shaffer (Bioengineering)
October 6, 3:00, Towne Building, Room 337
Title: Adventures with RNA FISH for diagnosing viral infections and exploring single-cell heterogeneity in cancer
Advisor: Arjun Raj

Sumeet Khetarpal (CAMB)
October 11, noon, Rubenstein Aud, Smilow
Title: Mining Novel Genomic Variants and Causal Pathways Linking HDL and Triglycerides to Coronary Disease
Advisor: Dan Rader

Ryan Jamiolkowski (Bioengineering)
October 13, time and location TBA
Title Single-molecule studies of tRNA dynamics during ongoing translation
Advisor: Yale Goldman

Jerome Molleston (CAMB)
October 18, 2:00, Reunion Hall, JMB
Tentative title: A conserved antiviral role for a virus-induced cytoplasmic exosome complex
Advisor: Sara Cherry

Ted Kreider (CAMB)
October 31, 9:00, Class of ’62, JMB
TItle: HIV-1 Evolution during Natural Infection
Advisor: Bea Hahn

September 2016

Jacob Till (CAMB)
September 1, 2:00, Reunion Hall, JMB
Tentative title: A New Mouse Model of Metastatic Gastric Cancer: Primary tumor suppression by E-cadherin
Advisor: Dr. Sandra Ryeom

David Tischfield (Neuroscience)
September 8, 1:00, Reunion Hall, JMB
Title: Identification of novel molecular-genetic pathways regulating the development of subpallial derivatives
Advisor: Dr. Stewart Anderson

Ian Lamborn (Immunology)
September 9, 2:00, BRB auditorium
Title: The Genetic, Molecular, and Cellular Bases of Unidentified Primary Immunodeficiencies
Advisors: Dr. Helen Su and Dr. Mike Leonardo

Liz Traxler (CAMB)
September 13, 11:00, Reunion Hall, JMB
Title: Insights into Terminal Erythropoiesis Influenced by Human Genetic Variation
Advisor: Dr. Mitch Weiss

Lance Peterson (Immunology)
September 21, 1:00, Reunion Auditorium, JMB
Title: Regulation of Cell Death and Inflammation in Antibacterial Immunity
Advisors: Dr. Igor Brodsky

Lucie Guo (Biochemistry and Molecular Biophysics)
September 23, 1:00, CRB Austrian Auditorium
TItle: CENP-A and friends: a collaborative model for the epigenetic transmission of centromere identity
Advisor: Dr. Ben Black

August 2016

Julia Rood (Immunology)
August 17, 2:00, Class of ’62, JMB
Title: The role of activated CD8+ T cells in hemophagocytic syndromes
Advisor: Dr. Edward Behrens

Michael Loesche (CAMB)
August 29, 11:00, CRB Austrian Auditorium
Title: Temporal Dynamics of the Skin Microbiome in Disease
Advisors: Dr. Elizabeth Grice and Dr.Frederic Bushman

Luke Messac (History and Sociology of Science)
August 30, 10:00, Glossberg Seminar Room (Room 247), Lippincott Library
Title: Dividends of disquiet: popular politics and economic thought in the history of government medical services in Nyasaland/Malawi, 1914-1983
Date: Tuesday, August 30th
Advisor: Robby Aronowitz

June 2016

Paul Ginart (Bioengineering)
June 1, 10:00, 337 Towne Bldg
Title: Visuallizing allele-specific expression in single cells
Advisor: Dr. Arjun Raj

May 2016

Eva Klinman (Neuroscience)
May 23, 1:30, Class of ’62, JMB
Title: Regulation of Dynein-Depedent Neuronal Transport and Trafficking by CDK5
Advisor: Dr. Erika Holzbaur

November 2015

Sesh Sundararaman (CAMB)
November 3, 3:00, Class of ’62, JMB
Title: Comparative genomics of ape Plasmodium parasites reveals key evolutionary events leading to human malaria
Advisors: Dr. Bea Hahn and Dr. Rick Bushman

Chris Hsiung (CAMB)
November 6, 1:30, Reunion Auditorium, JMB
Title: The mitotic genome: accessibility and transcriptional control
Advisors: Dr. Gerd Blobel, Dr. Arjun Raj

Derek Oldridge (GCB)
November 20, 9:00, Class of ’62, JMB
Title: Insights into neuroblastoma initiation and disease progression through integrative genomics and epigenomics
Advisor: Dr. John Maris

Michael Nakazawa (CAMB)
November 23, 1:00, 252 BRB
Title: TBA
Advisor: Dr. Celeste Simon

October 2015

Christian Hinderer (CAMB)
October 2, 10:00, Class of ’62, JMB
Title: Intrathecal Adeno-Associated Virus Vector Delivery for Mucopolysaccharidosis Type I
Advisor: Dr. Jim Wilson

Will Cho (CAMB)
October 22, 2:00, Class of ’62, JMB
Title: Homologous Recombination-Directed Mechanisms of Alternative Lengthening of Telomeres
Advisor: Dr. Roger Greenberg

Tina Ho (CAMB)
October 29, 3:00, SCTR 9-146
Title: Dimerization prevents PMEL functional amyloid formation in early secretory compartments
Advisor: Dr. Micky Marks

September 2015

Nabil Thalji (Pharmacology)
September 4, 3:00, 8-146 Smillow
Title: A New Mechanism-Driven Bypassing Strategy for Direct Factor Xa Inhibitors Reveals an Unexpected Property of Target-Specific Anticoagulants
Advisor: Dr. Rodney Camire

Chris Hergott (CAMB)
September 15, 1:00, Class of '62 Auditorium, John Morgan Building
Title: Microbial Manipulation of Phagocyte Function During Infection and Health
Advisor: Dr. Jeff Weiser

Henry Bergquist (Health Care Management & Economics)
September 24, 8:00, Colonial Penn Center, Faculty Lounge
Title: An examination of medical technology disadoption and its relation to technology adoption and physician organization
Advisor: Dr. Guy David


Louis Kang (Physics)
August 4, 2:30, David Rittenhouse Laboratory (DRL) 3W2
Title: Chirality and its spontaneous symmetry breaking in two liquid crystal systems
Advisor: Dr. Tom Lubensky and Dr. Andrea Liu

Apple Long (CAMB)
August 7, 9:00, 901 BRB
Title: Molecular mechanisms of esophageal squamous cell carcinoma
Advisor: Dr. Anil Rustgi

Bo Qiu (CAMB)
August 13, 10:30, CRB Austrian Auditorium
Title: Tumor promoting functions of lipid storage in clear cell renal cell carcinoma
Advisor: Dr. Celeste Simon

Yin Li (Neuroscience)
August 21, 12:00, Barchi Library (140 John Morgan)
Title: When it's right to be wrong: learning from mistakes in an uncertain world
Advisor: Dr. Josh Gold

Sara Small (CAMB)
August 25, 2:00, BRB 252
Title: IL-10 family members as novel responders to genotoxic stress
Advisor: Dr. Eric Brown

July 2015

Alex Gill (Neuroscience)

July 23, 2:00, BRB 252
Title: A novel role for and potential therapeutic targeting of heme oxygenase-1 in HIV neuropathogenesis
Advisor: Dr. Dennis Kolson

Zach Rodgers (Bioengineering)

July 28, 1:00, Large MRI Conference Room, 1 Founders HUP
Title: Dynamic assessment of neurometabolism with MRI
Advisor: Dr. Felix Wehrli

May 2015

Ankit Jain (Neuroscience)

May 26, 10:00, Barchi Library, 140 JMB
Title: From Receptor to Brain: Synaptic, Cellular and Behavioral Pathophysiology in anti-GABA receptor and anti-NMDA receptor encephalitides
Advisor: Dr. Rita Balice Gordon

Nora Becker (Health Care Management)
May 28, 1:15, Colonial Penn Center Faculty Lounge
Title: Insurance Coverage Mandates for Preventive Care: The Market for Contraceptives
Advisor: Dr. Dan Polsky

April 2015

Yafeng Li (CAMB)

April 8, 12:00, Reunion Auditorium, JMB
Title: Iron accumulation and complement dysregulation in the retinal pigment epithelium: implications for age-related macular degeneration
Advisor: Dr. Josh Dunaief

James Hui (Bioengineering)
April 13, 2:00, 5000 Vagelos
Title: Engineering a Light-Activated Protein Domain for the Site-Specific Conjugation of Native IgGs
Advisor: Dr. Andrew Tsourkas

March 2015

Mark Stoddard (CAMB)
March 9, 3:30, Class of '62, JMB
Title: Molecular Characterization of the Transmission and Early Diversification of HCV
Advisor: Dr. George Shaw

December 2014

Ray Zhang (GCB)
December 2, 10:00, BRB auditorium
Title: Building and Mining an Atlas of the Mammalian Circadian Transcriptome
Advisor: Dr. John Hogenesch

Rose Li (CAMB)
December 3, 2:00, Austrian Auditorium, CRB
Tite: The Genomic Architecture of Pediatric Autoimmune Diseases
Advisors: Dr. Hakon Hakonarson and Dr. Brendan Keating

Johanna Busch (CAMB)
December 17, 2:00, 252 BRB
Title: Increased expression of the frontotemporal dementia risk factor TMEM106B alters lysosomal and autophagosomal pathways
Advisor: Dr. Alice Chen Plotkin

Mark Ferreira (CAMB)
December 18, 2:00, 252 BRB
Title: Spontaneous pancreatitis caused by tissue-specific ablation of Hhex in mice
Advisor: Dr. Klaus Kaestner

Aaron Stonestrom (CAMB)
December 19, 10:00, 8-146 Smilow CTR
Title: Function of BET proteins in GATA1-mediated transcription
Advisor: Dr. Gerd Blobel

Rafi Winograd (CAMB)
December 19, 1:00, SCTR Auditorium
Title: Resistance to PD-1 blockade in pancreatic cancer
advisor: Dr. Bob Vonderheide

Jon Brestoff (CAMB)
December 19, 2:00, Class of '62, JMB
Title:Innate immune cell regulation of metabolic homeostasis
Advisor: Dr. David Artis

November 2014

Brian Finkelman (Epidemiology)
November 5, 11:30, 701 Blockley
Title: Prediction in therapeutic effectiveness research: prolonged dose titration in warfarin patients and model transportability
Advisor: Dr. Stephen Kimmel

Ting Yang (CAMB)
November 5, 9:00, Class of ’62, JMB
Title: Mutual reinforcement between telomere capping and canonical Wnt pathway activity in the intestinal stem cell niche
Advisor: Dr. Brad Johnson

October 2014

Mudit Gupta (CAMB)
October 8, 1:00, Smilow 11-146
Title: Regulation of Progenitor Cell Commitment by Hdac3
Advisor: Dr. Jon Epstein

Lauren Banks (CAMB)
October 28, 1:00, CRB Austrian Auditorium
Title: The role of the Akt2 isoform in Th17 differentiation in vitro and peripheral CD4 T cell immune responses in vivo
Advisor: Dr. Gary Koretzky

Steven Siegel (CAMB)
October 31, 12:00pm, 209 Johnson Pavilion
Title: Inflammation promotes pneumococcal colonization of the respiratory tract
Advisor: Dr. Jeff Weiser

September 2014

Ashwin Ramayya (Neuroscience)
September 5, 1:00, Barchi Library, 140 JMB
Title: Human Reinforcement Learning: Insights from Intracranial Recordings and StimulationAdvisor: Dr. Mike Kahana

Sheena Baratono (Immunology)
September 25, 2:00, Class of '62, JMB
Title: Toll-like receptor 9 and Interferon-γ receptor signaling suppress the B cell fate of uncommitted progenitors
Advisor: Dr. Ed Behrens

August 2014

Ari Friedman (Health Care Management and Economics)
August 1, 9:00, Faculty Lounge, Colonial Penn Center
Title: Firm response to low-reimbursement patients in the market for unscheduled outpatient care
Advisor: Dr. Mark Pauly

June 2014

Alice Zhou (CAMB)

June 4, 9:30, 09-146AB Smilow Center for Translational Research
Title: Effect of Cyclosporin A on the tumor microenvironment
Advisor: Dr. Sandra Ryeom

May 2014

Omar Butt (Neuroscience)
May 22, 2:00, Barchi Library, 140 John Morgan Bldg
Title: Form in Darkness: Linking Visual Cortex Structure with Spontaneous Neural Function
Advisor: Dr. Geoff Aguirre

April 2014

Erica Dwyer (History and Sociology of Science)
April 25, 2:00, Claudia Cohen Hall room 337
Title:The power of eXtremes: global science, rural Africa and the making of extensively drug-resistant tuberculosis as a global health crisis (tentative)
Advisor: Dr. Steve Feierman

January 2014

Jessica Shay (CAMB)
January 3, 1:00, BRB Auditorium
Title: Hypoxia Inducible Factors in Cancer and Inflammation
Advisor: Dr. Celeste Simon

December 2013

Chuka Didigu (CAMB)
December 3, 2:00, Reunion Hall, JMB
Title: Precision genome engineering using designer nucleases: Specificity and therapeutic applications
Advisor: Dr. Bob Doms

Chris Thom (CAMB)
December 12, 2:00, Smilow Center for Translational Research Auditorium
Title:The role of Trim58 in erythropoiesis
Advisor: Dr. Mitch Weiss

Andrew Liu (Bioengineering)
December 20, 9:00, Barchi Library, JMB
Title:Temporal Processing in Auditory Perceptual Grouping and Decision Making
Advisor: Dr. Yale Cohen

November 2013

Daniel Abravanel (CAMB)
November 25, 2:00, SCTR 9-146
Title: Role of Notch Signaling in Breast Cancer Progression
Advisor: Dr. Lewis Chodosh

October 2013

Lisa Korn (Immunology)
October 14, 2:00, Class of ’62, JMB
Title: The role of antigen-specific signals in the regulation of CD4+ T cell niches in the intestine
Advisor: Dr. Terri Laufer

Teddy Drivas (CAMB)
October 24, 2013, 10:00, BRB auditorium
Title: Bridging the gap: Defining the molecular mechanisms of CEP290 disease pathogenesis
advisor: Dr. Jean Bennett

Rena Zheng (Immunology)
October 28, 2013, 3:00, Class of ’62, JMB
Title: The function of GATA factors in the adult liver
Advisor: Dr. Gerd Blobel

Ryan Moy (Immunology)
October 30, 2013, 2:00, Reunion Hall, JMB
Title: An evolutionarily conserved role for autophagy in antiviral defense
Advisor: Dr. Sara Cherry

September 2013

Andrew Stern (CAMB)
September 3, 2013, 10:00, 251 BRB
Title: Nitric oxide sensing and response in Vibrio cholerae
Advisor: Dr. Jay Zhu

Paul Hess (CAMB)
September 6, 2013, 11:00, SCTR 10-146
Title: Platelets Mediate Lympho-Venous Hemostasis to Maintain Blood-Lymphatic Separation Throughout Life
Advisor: Dr. Mark Kahn

Sean Spencer (Immunology)
September 9, 2013, 1:00, Smilow Center for Translational Research Auditorium
Title: DietaryVitamin ARegulates Intestinal Innate Immunity
Advisor: Dr. Yasmine Belkaid (NIH)

Kevan Salimian (BMB)
September 10, 2013, 2:00, BRB auditorium
Title: Structural and mechanistic insights into centromere specification and kinetochore regulation
Advisor: Dr. Ben Black

David Rawnsley (CAMB)
September 13, 2013, 12:00, SCTR 9-146
Title: Functions of Atoh8 and Mekk3 in Cardiovascular Development
Advisor: Dr. Mark Kahn

Jesse Platt (CAMB)
September 18, 2013, 2:00, Reunion, John Morgan Bldg
Title: Rap1 Relocalization Contributes to the Chromatin-Mediated Gene Expression Profile and Pace of Cell Senescence
Advisor: Dr. Brad Johnson

Irene Chernova (Immunology)
September 27, 2013, 2:00, Class of '62, John Morgan Bldg
Title: Cellular basis of antibody maintenance: Heterogeneity of the bone marrow plasma cell pool
Advisor: Dr. Dave Allman

August 2013

Rohan Joshi (Immunology)
August 1, 1:00, CRB Austrian Auditorium
Title: Regulation of T Cell Receptor Signaling by Diacylglycerol Kinases and Phosphatidylinositol Transfer Proteins
Advisor: Dr. Gary Koretzky

Josiah Petersen (CAMB)
August 15, 3:00, Class of ’62, John Morgan Bldg
Title: Identifying Host Factors Important for Hantavirus Entry
Advisor: Dr. Bob Doms

David Combs (Neuroscience)
August 21, 1:00,Barchi Library, 140 John Morgan Bldg
Title: The roles of outer leaflet lipids in ion channel function and bacterial virulence
Advisor: Dr. Zhe Lu

Yang Li (CAMB)
August 27, 10:00, Wistar Auditorium
Title: The Impact of Receptor Binding Avidity and Immune History on the Antigenic Determination of Influenza A Viruses
Advisor: Dr. Scott Hensley

Chris Nabel (CAMB)
August 28, 10:00, CRB Austrian Auditorium
Title: Nucleic acid determinants of cytosine deamination by AID/APOBEC enzymes in immunity and epigenetics
Advisor: Dr. Rahul Kohli