Nathalie Scholler Laboratory

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Past Lab Members
Photo: scott H. Spitzer - Spring 2011



Carlo Fremd was a visiting medical student from Heidelberg University, Germany. He joined the lab from December 2011 to September 2012 to gain experience in basic gynecological research. He also participated to clinical rotations in the University Hospital of Penn.


Timothy (Tim) Chao was a 1st year MD. Ph.D. student from Penn. He joined the lab during the summer 2012 to work on the role of B cells in ovarian cancer and teamed up with Carlo.

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Selene Nunez-Cruz, PhD, joined the OCRC as postdoctoral researcher in 2008 after a first post-doctoral fellowship at the Children's Hospital of Philadelphia. She became a Research Associate from 2010 to 2012. Selene’s project was centered on the role of complement system proteins and B cells in ovarian cancer. She developped several mouse models to conduct these studies. Her work was published and recompensed by several presentation awards in international meetings.




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Denarda Dangaj worked on her thesis project from 2008 to 2012, after obtaining a BS in Molecular Biology & Genetics from the University of Thrace, Greece, in 2007. During her thesis project, she first studied the role of GPI-anchored glycoproteins in macrophage polarization in tumor stroma. Toward this goal, Denada developed in vitro model systems for human macrophage maturation and generating recombinant proteins, antigen-specific yeast-display scFv and biobodies. Next, Denarda developed and validated recombinant antibodies directed against B7-H4 immunosuppressive molecule.



Norma Alexis Brown was a NSF/AMP Research Program Participant. She spent ten weeks in the Scholler lab during the summer 2011.

She wrote: " Working in the Scholler lab this summer was remarkable. This was my first experience working in a lab, and I have learned so much from the experience. I learned so many new experimental techniques, including cell culture, ELISAs, flow cytometry, and SDS gels. Not only was everyone in the lab incredibly nice, but also brilliant. This fact was exhibited every week at lab meeting when someone would present their recent work to the group. I realized then how small experiments lead to such grand and important discoveries in cancer research. Needless to say, this lab has only amplified my interest in immunology and cancer research. Thanks for an amazing summer research experience!"  Norma won second prize for her summer presentation within the Philadelphia AMP participants. Congrats Norma!


Michael Allegrezza was a graduate student in the Cell and Molecular Biology Graduate Group of the University of Pennsylvania when he spent a rotation in the Scholler lab during the spring of 2011.

He wrote: "I had a great rotation experience in the Scholler lab. The friendly and helpful environment made it enjoyable to learn new techniques while contributing useful research data.  Dr. Scholler offered insightful critiques of my data analysis and presentation skills, which has helped develop my scientific abilities."


Matthew Cha, Kevin Chu, Andrew Lee, and Xiao Ling were Bioengineering Undergraduate Students when they worked in the Scholler lab for their Senior Design Project during the spring of 2011. They formed the KMAX team. They were developing nanoparticles capable of binding ovarian cancer cells via recombinant antibodies for inductive heating and thermoablation of cancer cells.



Caroline Rozan (second left), here with Selene, Shree and Yi (left to right).Caroline was a PhD student from the INSERM laboratory of Daniel Baty in Marseille Luminy, France. She came during the summer 2010 for a collaborative study centered on the development of bispecific antibodies directed against CEA and CD16.





Kolin Hribar worked in the Scholler lab as a Bioengineering Undergraduate Student for his Senior Design Project during the spring of 2010. He is now attending UC San Diego for his PhD. He teamed with Gregory Wiedman, now studying at Johns Hopkins for his PhD thesis. Their work in the Scholler lab involved the synthesis and modification of gold nanorods for the imaging and photothermal ablation of cancer cells. 

Kolin enjoys music (classic rock, electronic, classical), watching and playing sports (soccer, skiing, football), and traveling.

Nicole Martinez was a graduate student in the Iimmunology program at Penn when she spent a lab rotation during the spring of 2010 in the Scholler lab.

She wrote: "Rotating in the Scholler lab allowed me to engage in exciting research at the forefront of developing novel ovarian cancer immunotherapies. This conducive environment allowed me to gain field-specific knowledge as well as develop exceptional experimental design strategies and an “out of the box” approach to problem solving that are beneficial to my career."



Ananda Mookerjee obtained his PhD degree in immunology in 2005 from the Bose Institute, Kolkata, India. He received two post doctoral trainings, first in the Chittaranjan National Cancer Institute, Kolkata, India and the second at U563, INSERM, Purpan in Toulouse, France before he joined UPenn in 2010 as a post-doctoral fellow.

He spent one year working in the Scholler lab, characterizing the tumor microenvironment of an humanized mouse model.



Natalia Diaz-Rodriguez was a third year student at the University of Pennsylvania Perelman School of Medicine when she worked at the Scholler lab during the summer of 2009. Under the guidance of Dr. Zhao and Dr. Scholler, Natalia worked on screening and isolating a scFv antibody library against formalin-fixed, murine and human mesothelin.








Aizhi Zhao, MD, PhD, was a post-doctoral fellow from 2008 to 2010 in the Scholler lab. Aizhi constructed two yeast-display antibody libraries and identified affinity reagents against tumor vasculature specific markers for diagnostic, imaging and therapeutic applications. Aizhi is now Research Associate at Penn OCRC.








Amber Roberts, MS, was a research specialist in the Scholler lab from 2008 to 2009. She was assisting the researchers with writing and submitting IACUC research protocols and oversaw related compliance matters. 




Murielle Saade (right) visited our lab for a couple of months at the beginning of the year 2008. She was then a graduate student from the group of Catherine N'Guyen at the TAGC in Marseille, France. She learned our yeast-display technology and brought it back to her lab. She is now a post-doctoral fellow in Barcelona, Spain. On the picture she is with Dimitra Sasaroli (left), then a PhD visiting student from Greece in the laboratory of Dr G. Coukos.


Sanjiban Banerjee (right) was a post-doctoral fellow in the TOR laboratory at the FHCRC, where he was initiated by Dr Scholler to recombinant antibodies expressed by yeast. Since then, he moved back to India and created AbGenics Life Sciences, a start up biotech company based in Pune (India). Its research programs evolve from the convergence of the remarkable specificity, flexibility and diversity of the antibody molecules. The mission forward at AbGenics is to further harness and modulate the potential of antibody molecules for prophylaxis and treatment of infectious diseases.