sbp students and faculty

Our Students, Graduates
and Faculty

Our Community

Current Graduate Students

Click Read More for more information about our current graduate students.

  • Numana Bhat, B.S.

    Numana is interested in studying the mechanisms and regulation of B-cell activation with focus on NFkB signaling and related pathways.

  • Francesca Boscolo Sesillo, M.S.

    Francesca Boscolo Sesillo is interested in understanding the role of cellular senescence in Duchenne Muscular Dystrophy.

  • Clyde Campbell, B.S.

    He plans to utilize his experiences to help develop new genetic tools to manipulate gene function and elucidate the mechanisms involved in diseases associated with the liver and pancreas.

  • Alex Campos, B.S.

    Alex's work focuses on understanding how cancer utilizes adaptive responses to stress, such as oxidative and metabolic stress, to provide growth, proliferation, and survival advantages over normal non-transformed cells.

  • Alessandra Dall'Agnese, M.S.

    Alessandra’s goal is to elucidate the 3D structure of the genome important for muscle differentiation.

  • Roisin Delaney, M.Pharm 

    Roisin Delaney will be researching the regulation of Ras signaling for cancer therapy.

  • Lisa Elmen, M.S.

    Lisa's research is focused on establishing the etiological role of the gastrointestinal microbiome in colorectal cancer and inflammatory bowel disease.

  • Monica Gonzalez, B.S., M.S.

    My research focuses on discovering caspase substrates critical in the cell survival function of caspase-8.

  • Anjali Gupta, B.S., M.S., M.B.A.

    Anjali is interested in studying genetics. She has a background in pharmaceutical research and marketing.

  • Leanora Hernandez, B.S.

    Leanora is interested in studying the emerging role of NPCs including their involvement in genome organization, tumorigenesis, differentiation, and development.

  • Daniel Ojeda Juarez, B.S.

    Daniel is focused in HIV-associated dementia.

  • Gianluigi Lichinchi, M.S.

    Gianluigi is interested in understanding the mechanisms involving small RNAs and RNA-protein complexes in regulating HIV-1 cycle and host-pathogen interactions.

  • Jinsha Liu, M.S.

    Jinsha aims to investigate the role of CDH13 and explore possible mechanisms in neuronal networks.

  • Marco Maruggi, B.S., M.Eng.

    My work revolves around understanding the impact of hypoxia on the DNA repair process, specifically in the context of resistance to targeted therapy to cancer.

  • Wesley McKeithan, B.A.

    Wesley is focused on developing high throughput assays that measure cardiomyocyte action potential and calcium transient kinetics.

  • Paloma Sanchez Pavon, B.S.

    Paloma’s research is mainly focused on how HIV infection can trigger a degenerative disease of the brain.

  • Cameron Pernia, B.S.

    Cameron is interested in utilizing these stem cell tools to elucidate how changes in the molecular biology of the brain results in complex changes in behavior and cognition.

  • Amir Razai, M.A.

    Inhibition of NSP that reduce the pathological processes associated with a number of respiratory inflammatory diseases.

  • Miguel Reina Campos, B.S., M.S.

    Miguel’s research is mainly focused on the study of the role of atypical PKC’s pathway in cancer and cellular homeostasis thorough the identification of selective substrates for this PKC subfamily.

  • Huiyu Ren, B.S.

    Huiyu’s research is focused on identifying and characterizing signaling molecules and intracellular pathways involved in cell death and survival.

  • Marisa Sanchez, B.S.

    Marisa is studying how cells ensure their survival by adapting their gene expression in response to oxidative stress.

  • Khooshbu Shah, B.S.

    Khooshbu is interested in re-creating ARVD/C in a dish with the use of induced pluripotent stem cells in order to evaluate potential therapies for the disease.

  • Stephen Soonthornvacharin, B.S.

    Stephen is interested in employing a systems-based approach, which will integrate a series of functional genomics analyses to identify novel molecular factors in RIG-I-dependent type-I interferon signaling.

  • Jessica Stupack, B.S.

    Jessica is interested in elucidating underlying molecular mechanisms of various neurodegenerative diseases.

  • Victoria Thaney, B.S.

    Victoria’s research is focused on pathological processes associated with human immunodeficiency virus-1(HIV-1) infection, in particular HIV-1 associated dementia (HAD).

  • Matthew Tierney, M.A.

    Matthew is interested in investigating the microenvironmental cues and cell-autonomous features that influence the regenerative potential of these different populations.

  • Tiara Tirasawasdichai, B.A.

    Tiara will be studying the metabolic dysregulation of hypertrophic cardiomyopathy (HCM) using patient-specific iPSC-derived cardiomyocytes.

  • Paula Toto, M.S.

    Paula’s goal is to elucidate the individual role of Brm and Brg1-containing SWI/SNF complexes during myoblast differentiation.

  • Yinga Wu, B.Sc.

    Yinga’s research is focus on RNA methylation.

  • Agata Xella, B.S.

    My research focuses on the signals that control cell growth and differentiation in the nervous system, and how these signals are dysregulated in brain tumors.

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Cameron Pernia
Cameron Pernia, B.S.

"A great feature of SBP graduate school is its size, we have more faculty members than students, so I have easy access to mentors. I could not be happier with my decision to pursue my Ph.D. at SBP, and I am confident it will be one of the best choices I will ever make."

Miguel Campos photo
Miguel Reina Campos, M.S.

"I was drawn to SBP for its clinically oriented goals, state of the art facilities and the great talent that inhabits the institution. It appeared to me as the perfect blend of the will to cure and the genuine curiosity that drives the finest basic research."

Marisa Sanchez, in the lab
Marisa Sanchez, B.S.

"I chose to study at Sanford Burnham Prebys Medical Discovery Institute because it is leading the frontiers of translational biomedical research. I have always had a fascination for research and discovering new ways to improve the lives of people suffering from disease."

 Alumni

"Sanford Burnham Prebys Medical Discovery Institute graduate students are bright and highly driven with a clear focus on their next career step. Upon graduation, most of our students have moved on to become successful biomedical researchers in both fields of industry and academia."

Malene Hansen, Ph.D.
Associate Dean for Student Affairs 

Ryon Graf, Ph.D.

"Biomedical Sciences at SBP exposed me to the beating heart of scientific and medical innovation that defines the Torrey Pines mesa in San Diego. SBP program in particular exposed my classmates and I to a wide variety of scientific and industrial avenues, and was geared at producing versatile scientists that could thrive in industry, academia, or beyond."

Ying Zhang, Ph.D.

"I have benefitted greatly from the rich environment of scientific research at SBP. In my opinion this is a perfect place for pursuing graduate school in interdisciplinary research areas. I was so lucky to be surrounded by world-class research laboratories in the study of cancer pathology, aging, infectious diseases, biochemistry, and computational biology."

Graduate School of Biomedical Sciences Alumni

Click Read More for more information about our alumni.

2016

  • Mirco Guigli
    Ph.D. in Biomedical Sciences
    Thesis Title: Investigation of Structured Illumination Confocal Microscopy for High Content Screening
    Current Position: Instrumentation Engineer at Vala Sciences

  • Stephen Soonthornvacharin
    Ph.D. in Biomedical Sciences
    Thesis Title: Systems-Level Analysis to Elucidate the Regulation of the RIG-I-Mediated Antiviral Innate Immune Response

  • Paula Coutinho Toto
    Ph.D. in Biomedical Sciences
    Thesis Title: Regulation of Skeletal Muscle Cell Quiescence, Proliferation and Differentiation by Brahma-based SWI/SNF Chromatin-Remodeling Complex

  • Matthew Tierney
    Ph.D. in Biomedical Sciences
    Thesis Title: Regulatory mechanisms controlling muscle stem cell behavior during skeletal muscle repair
    Current Position: Postdoctoral Fellow in Fuchs Lab at Rockefeller University

2015

  • Giuseppina Claps
    Ph.D. in Biomedical Sciences
    Thesis Title: Redefining AFT2 in Braf-driven melanoma
    Current Position: Postdoctoral Fellow in the Ronai Lab at Sanford Burnham Prebys Medical Discovery Institute

  • Yi Ding
    Ph.D. in Biomedical Sciences
    Thesis Title: Structural and Functional Studies of the Outer Membrane Protein Ail from Yersenia Pestis
    Current Position: Master Student, Statistics, Stanford University

  • Sara Gelino
    Ph.D. in Biomedical Sciences
    Thesis Title: Investigating the Mechanisms of Autophagy-Mediated Longevity During Dietary Restriction
    Current Position: Postdoctoral Fellow in the Hansen Lab at Sanford Burnham Prebys Medical Discovery Institute

  • Saumya Nagar
    Ph.D. in Biomedical Sciences
    Thesis Title: Role of MEF2 in photoreceptor degeneration

2014

  • Angel Bottini
    Ph.D. in Biomedical Sciences
    Thesis Title: Drug Discovery Studies on Influenza A Virus and Yersinia Outer Protein H (YopH)
    Current Position: Postdoctoral Fellow in the Bottini Lab at La Jolla Institute for Allergy and Immunology

  • Ryan Esquejo
    Ph.D. in Biomedical Sciences 
    Thesis Title: Integration of Lipid Synthesis and Other Biological Processes via Sterol Regulatory Element Binding Proteins
    Current Position: Postdoctoral Fellow at Sanford Burnham Prebys Medical Discovery Institute

  • Domenico Fasci
    Ph.D. in Biomedical Sciences 
    Thesis Title: New Insights into the Regulation of SUMO Dynamics by the Human SUMO-specific Proteases (SENPs) 
    Current Position: Postdoctoral Fellow at Universiteit Utrecht, The Netherlands

  • Lorenzo Giordani
    Ph.D. in Biomedical Sciences 
    Current Position: Postdoctoral Fellow at the Institut de Myologie in Paris, France

  • Ryon Graf
    Ph.D. in Biomedical Sciences 
    Thesis Title: The Regulation of Breast Cancer Metastasis by Caspase-8 
    Current Position: Project Manager, Pharma Services at Epic Sciences

  • Janna Hachmann
    Ph.D. in Biomedical Sciences
    Thesis Title: Activity and Specificity of the Human Paracaspase MALT1
    Current Position: Scientist at Inhibrx

  • Philip McQuary
    Ph.D. in Biomedical Sciences
    Thesis Title: Understanding the longevity of rsks-1/S6K C. elegant mutants
    Current Position: Scientist at AltheaDX

  • Goonho Park
    Ph.D. in Biomedical Sciences
    Thesis Title: Investigation of Aberrant Epigenetic Mechanisms in Parkinson's Disease Pathogenesis
    Current Position: Postdoctoral Fellow in the lab of Dr. Edward Koo at UCSD

  • Judith Scheliga
    Ph.D. in Biomedical Sciences 
    Thesis Title: Role of elf3e in mRNA Translation 
    Current Position: Technical Applications Scientist at Illumina

  • Danhua Zhang
    Ph.D. in Biomedical Sciences
    Thesis Title: The Specification of Ductal Lineages in Liver and Pancreas
    Current Position: Postdoctoral Fellow in the lab of Dr. Farham Imam at UCSD

2013

2012

  • Runquan Zhang
    Ph.D. in Biomedical Sciences 
    Thesis Title: Novel Synthetic Ligands of CCR5 and CXCR4: Biochemical Characterization and Preclinical Studies 
    Current Position: Postdoctoral Fellow in the lab of Dongxian Zhang at Sanford Burnham Prebys Medical Discovery Institute 

  • Corrine Lee 
    Ph.D. in Biomedical Sciences 
    Thesis Title: Spinal Disinhibition in a Rodent Model of Painful Diabetic Neuropathy 
    Current Position: Postdoctoral Fellow in Dr. Mark Tuszynski's Lab at UCSD

2011

2009

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Current Graduate Student Advisors
huaxi hu

Huaxi Xu, Ph.D.

Jeanne and Gary Herberger Leadership Chair in Neuroscience Research
Professor and Director, Neuroscience Initiative
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