Trainees at the Wilmer Eye Institute

Trainees at the Wilmer Eye Institute

Erika Aguzzi, MSc, Ph.D. - Johnson Lab

About:"My current research incorporates translational neuroscience studies that utilize stem cells to observe the survival and integrative capacity of transplanted RGCs in the mammalian retina. I am also interested in understanding how neuroprotective strategies can increase regeneration of RGCs and the optic nerve."
Outside of the lab: "I enjoy traveling and spending time with my two Westies, as well as supporting efforts to save Vaquita porpoise, the most endangered cetacean in the world.”

Erika Aguzzi

Gianni Castiglione, Ph.D. - Duh Lab

About: "My work investigates the effects of genetic variation on protein biochemistry and retinal degeneration. Inspired by extremophile animals, I use an evolutionary medicine approach to design engineered visual pigments and test their therapeutic potential within mouse models of Stargardt disease."
Outside of the Lab:“I enjoy walking/wrestling my giant Malamute, reading history and philosophy, and getting away from science”

Gianni Castiglione

Alexander Chin, Ph.D. - Elisseeff Lab

About:"My work in the lab asks how molecular mechanisms of intracellular stress modulate and can be modulated by aging and regenerative processes.
Outside of the lab"You might find me playing jazz piano somewhere in the city."

Alexander Chin

Laura Drew-Bear, M.D. - Behrens Lab.

About: "My current research focuses on infections of the cornea, surgery of the cornea, refractive surgery and cataract surgery including improvement of intraocular lens power calculation with the use of artificial intelligence."
Outside of the Lab: "I enjoy traveling, trying new foods, playing golf and tennis, and spending time with family and friends."

Laura Drew-Bear

Casey Keuthan, Ph.D. - Zack Lab

About: “My research utilizes human stem cell models to understand mechanisms of retinal development and disease. I’m interested in how different mutations affect retinal ganglion cell differentiation and survival, as well as RNA splicing events that occur during retinogenesis and the progression of retinal disease.”

Outside of the Lab: “I enjoy dancing, eating good food, and watching the Boston Red Sox and Florida Gators sports.”

Casey Keuthan

Wathsala Nillushi G. H. M. Liyanage, Ph.D. - Kannan Lab

About: Dr. Liyanage's current research is focused on development of dendrimer bioconjugates including siRNA, antibody, peptide, proteins and, CRISPR/Cas 9 conjugates for a) development of targeted gene delivery platform b) construction of efficacious drug delivery system for ocular and neurodegenerative diseases.

Wathsala Nillushi G. H. M. Liyanage

Fahd Naufal, M.D., MPH, M.Sc. Global Health - Dana Center for Preventive Ophthalmology

About:Use of imaging technology in trachoma prevalence surveys, vision rehabilitation services, program manager - Wilmer Biostatistics Center, retinitis pigmentosa.
Outside of the Lab:"I enjoy travelling, hiking, cooking, trying new foods, and sports."

Fahd Naufal,

Cornelia Peterson, D.V.M., Ph.D. – Eberhart Lab

About: “I am interested in corneal biology and comparative ocular pathology especially the characterization of both experimental and naturally-occurring animal models of human eye diseases. Currently, I am working on exploring the molecular drivers of periocular and ocular surface and adnexal neoplasms.”
Outside of the Lab: “I enjoy swimming, powerlifting, and spending time with my two pugs.”

Cornelia Peterson

Sydney Shannon, Ph.D. Student - Green Lab & Schneck lab

About:"I work to develop artificial antigen presenting cells for in vivo T cell activation. The goal is to develop an injectable cancer therapeutic."
Outside of the Lab:"I enjoy swimming, skiing, and hiking."

Sydney Shannon

Rachel Shapiro, Ph.D. Candidate - Ensign Lab

About:"My work focuses on developing novel local drug delivery strategies and formulations for pre-term birth prevention, treating women's health diseases, and IBD and crohn's symptom alleviation."
Outside of the Lab:"I enjoy scuba diving, reading, drinking coffee, petting dogs, and travelling."

Rachel Shapiro

Jay Thierer, Ph.D., HPS Core Manager - Mumm Lab

About:"I am a full-time researcher in the Mumm Lab in charge of managing the HPS core as well as pursuing independent research projects. My primary interests include developing new paradigms for high-throughput forward genetic screening and studying interactions between senescent and immune cells during retinal degeneration and regeneration in zebrafish."

Jay Thierer

Yuli Wang - Yi Lab

About:"My current research focuses on the development of novel microscopy techniques that use light (optics) and deep learning methods to capture information about the structure and function of living tissues."

Yuli Wang

Lingli Zhou, M.D. - Duh Lab

About: “I am interested in the role of microglia and perictyes in ischemic retinopathy.”
Outside of the lab: “I enjoy traveling and hiking.”

Lingli Zhou