Congratulations to the 2023 Leading Edge Fellows!

2023 Leading Edge Fellows

Simone Webb

Human embryonic development

Postdoc, Newcastle University

Akanksha Thawani

Transposon structural biology and genome engineering

Postdoc, UC Berkeley

Cheyenne Tait

Invertebrate neurobiology and behavior

Postdoc, UMass Amherst

Marielena Sosa

Neural circuits of spatial learning and reward memory

Postdoc, Stanford University

Janet Song

Genetic basis of human brain evolution

Postdoc, Boston Children's Hospital

Brittany Ross

Bacterial physiology during chronic and acute infection

Postdoc, Georgia Tech

Ashlan Reid

Temporally distinct maturation of left and right auditory cortex

Postdoc, City College of New York/CSHL

Kavita Rangan

RNA editing in phenotypic plasticity and adaptation

Postdoc, Stanford University

Joan Pulupa

Imaging Genome Organization and Transcriptional Regulation in Olfactory Neurons


Postdoc, Columbia University

Ally Nguyen

Differential gene requirements for cell division and genome organization

Postdoc, Whitehead Institute

Maeve McLaughlin

Bacterial-Phage regulatory interactions 

Postdoc, Michigan State University

Anna Maurer

Understanding host-vector interactions to build better gene therapies

Postdoc, UC Berkeley

Yuan Ma

Develop imaging methods to visualize biomacromolecules and metabolites
in cells


Postdoc, UT Austin

Xinping Li

Neural mechanisms underlying behavioral flexibility


Postdoc, Princeton University

Hannah Ledvina

Bacterial Innate Immune Systems

Postdoc, University of Colorado, Boulder

Caitlin Kowalski

Resident fungi as gatekeepers of skin health

Postdoc, University of Oregon

Heidi Kletzien

Mechanisms of age-related head and neck tissue dysfunction and head and neck cancer initiation


Postdoc, Harvard University

Mandira Katuwal

Molecular mechanisms of long term memory


Postdoc, Harvard University

Katie Hatstat

Engineering bacterial signal transduction


Postdoc, UCSF

Gina Gallego-Lopez

Metabolism of host-parasite interaction


Postdoc, Morgridge Institute

Raquel Fueyo

Function and regulation of endogenous retroviruses in early human embryogenesis 


Postdoc, Stanford University

Devon Duron Ehnes

iPSC-derived organoids to study development and disease


Postdoc, University of Washington

Katherine Deets

Host-virus dynamics in Tetrahymena


Postdoc, University of Utah

Roxana Coreas

Nanomaterial-Biomolecular Interfaces


Postdoc, UC Berkeley

Abigael Cheruiyot

mRNA translation in pancreatic beta cells


Postdoc, Joslin Diabetes Center

Kristyn Carter

Translational biomarkers in Diabetic skin ulcers


Postdoc, Yale University

Maria Cecilia Canesso

Cell-cell interactions driving gut inflammation and tolerance


Postdoc, Rockefeller University

Ewa Bomba-Warczak

Mitochondrial fidelity in mammalian neurons


Postdoc, Northwestern University

Maigen Bethea

Gastrointestinal mechanoreceptors in the regulation of food intake


Postdoc, University of Colorado Anschutz Medical Campus

Kilan Ashad-Bishop

Social and structural determinants of cancer disparities


Postdoc, University of Miami Miller School of Medicine

2020, 2021, 2022 Fellows

Postdocs

Rachel Zwick

Epithelial tissue patterning and regeneration

Postdoc, UCSF

Xiaoxue (Snow) Zhou

Signal transmission in the yeast mitotic exit network

Postdoc, MIT

Helen Yang

Descending control of walking in Drosophila

Postdoc, Harvard Medical School

Katherine Xue

Ecology and evolution in the human gut microbiome

Postdoc, Stanford University 

Clarissa Whitmire

Somatosensory neural coding

Postdoc, Max Delbrück Center for Molecular Medicine

Shira Weingarten-Gabbay

Viral non-canonical ORFs as a hidden source for T cell epitopes


Postdoc, Broad Institute

Zara Weinberg

Decoding signaling to understand cellular behavior

Postdoc, UCSF

Erica Washington

Structure and function of microbial virulence


Postdoc, Duke University

Sissy Wamaitha

Human germ cell lineage emergence

Postdoc, UCLA


Christine Vazquez

Central nervous system immune evasion strategies of emerging viruses 


Postdoc, University of Pennsylvania

Katia Troha

Mechanisms of asymptomatic infection


Postdoc, Salk Institute

He Tian

 Directed evolution of biosensors for imaging neural activity

Postdoc, Harvard University

Tigist Tamir

Defining the role of protein phosphorylation on metabolic enzymes

Postdoc, Koch Institute,  MIT

Simón(e) Sun

Neuronal epigenetic regulation by estrogen receptor beta

Postdoc, Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory

Natalia Shylo

Evolution of developmental mechanisms in reptiles and mammals.

Postdoc, Stowers Institute for Medical Research

Mohini Sengupta

Neural circuits for motor control in the spinal cord

Postdoc, Wash U St. Louis


Melissa Roth

Regulation and dynamics of photosynthesis and metabolism

Postdoc, UC Berkeley

Aleah Roberts

Molecular mechanisms of non-canonical B Cell Receptor endocytosis

Postdoc, NIH


Deepa Ramamurthy

Neural circuits for attentional selection in sensory cortex

Postdoc, UC Berkeley

Mónica Quiñones-Frías

Structural dynamics of neuronal endoplasmic reticulum and its contacts

Postdoc, Brandeis University

Novalia Pishesha

Engineered nanobodies as immune modulators for autoimmunity and infectious diseases

Postdoc, Harvard and MIT

Connie Phong

Mechanisms underlying robustness of developmental regulatory systems against environmental perturbations


Postdoc, Stanford University

Sarah Pfau

The molecular and cellular bases of blood-brain barrier heterogeneity

Postdoc, Harvard Medical School

Nicole Perry-Hauser

The role of latrophillins in cell signaling and synapse formation

Postdoc, Columbia University


Adriane Otopalik

Mechanisms of behavioral flexibility and evolution


Postdoc, Rockefeller University

Sarah Naomi Olsen

Mechanisms of transcriptional regulation by chromatin complexes


Postdoc, Dana Farber Cancer Institute

Cameron Ogg

Neural circuits underlying behavioral flexibility

Postdoc, St. Jude

Anne Martin

Identifying how synapse coordination is achieved across a neural circuit

Postdoc, University of Oregon


Xiaotang Lu

Developing methods for connectomic studies


Postdoc, Harvard University

Elizabeth Lawrence

Microtubule dynamic instability in vitro

Postdoc, Vanderbilt University


Lisa Kursel 

Molecular evolution of meiotic proteins


Postdoc, University of Utah

Stacey Kigar

Neuroimmunology of stress-induced behavioral changes

Postdoc, University of Cambridge


Priyanka Joshi

Mechanisms of biochemical homeostasis in aging and age-related diseases


Postdoc, UC Berkeley

Chinyere Iweka 

Circadian regulation of immune cell metabolism


Postdoc, Stanford University



Miranda Hunter 

Spatial regulation of melanoma invasion


Postdoc, Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center

Victoria Hung

Ribosome heterogeneity in gene regulation and cell fate

Postdoc, Stanford University

Tegan Horan

Regulation of crossover formation in meiosis

Postdoc, Cornell University


Erin Hisey

Neural circuits underlying learning and forgetting

Postdoc, McLean Hospital, Harvard Medical School

Rose Hill

Mechanotransduction in unexpected places


Postdoc, Scripps

Zoë Hilbert

New modalities in host-microbe evolutionary conflicts

Postdoc, University of Utah


Shan He

Biogenesis of the eukaryotic CO2 concentrating organelle, the pyrenoid

Postdoc, Princeton University


Liz Haynes

Imaging neural development across whole-embryo and single cell scales

Postdoc, Morgridge Institute

Farah Haque

Microtubule-based regulatory mechanisms underlying signaling

Postdoc, Massachusetts General Hospital

Emily Hager

Coordination of cell behavior in complex environments


Postdoc, Boston University

Eartha Mae Guthman

Plasticity of hormone-sensitive neural circuits

Postdoc, Princeton University

Kathryn Gunn

Structure and mechanism of lipid metabolizing proteins

Postdoc, UNC

Lydia Grmai

Inter-organ regulation of reproduction

Postdoc, University of Pittsburgh

Ana Gonzalez-Reiche

Molecular evolutionary dynamics of virus transmission and host-virus interactions

Postdoc, Mount Sinai

Jessica Gray

Single cell insights into evolution and development

Postdoc, Harvard Medical School

Pragya Goel

Signaling structure for dopamine coding in the striatum


Postdoc, Harvard Medical School

Jaye Gardiner

Cancer-associated fibroblasts in pancreatic cancer

Postdoc, Fox Chase Cancer Center

Lam-Kiu Fong

Membrane protein function in Alzheimer's disease

Postdoc, UCSF

Christina Fitzsimmons

RNA epitranscriptomics in health and disease


Postdoc, National Institutes of Health

Lisa Eshun-Wilson

Mitochondrial quality control by diverse proteases

Postdoc, Scripps Institute


Julie Elie

The neuroethology of vocal communication in bats and songbirds

Postdoc, UC Berkeley

Tahra Eissa

Neural and cognitive mechanisms of adaptive decision-making


Postdoc, CU Boulder

Laura Desban

Role of microbiota in olfactory-driven social behaviors


Postdoc, University of Oregon

Catherine Denning-Jannace 

Targeting metallohomeostasis for antifungal drug development


Postdoc, Duke University

Joaquina Delás 

Noncoding genome regulation of developmental cell fate choice


Postdoc, The Francis Crick Institute

Andrea d'Aquino

Sustained delivery of GLP-1 receptor agonists for the treatment of diabetes

Postdoc, Stanford

Sarah Bowling 

Lineage tracing in early mouse development


Postdoc, Boston Children's Hospital

Cecilia Blengini

Chromosome segregation during female meiosis in mammals

Postdoc
Rutgers University

Sanchari Bhattacharyya

Genotype-phenotype relationship in bacterial systems

Postdoc, Harvard University


Noëlle Antao

Developing 3D models to characterise a human microsporidian parasite


Postdoc, NYU

Krista Angileri 

Transposon control as a checkpoint during regeneration


Postdoc, Cornell University



Biotech and consulting

Dorian Rosen

Modulating cellular stress responses to improve outcomes in neurological disorders

Independent consultant


Shermel Sherman 

Estrogen-Responsive Brain-Jaw Circuit in Temporomandibular Disorders

Scientist, BrainXell




Jennifer Kan

Designing and engineering de novo protein functions

Managing partner, Climate Capital Frontier

Sisi Chen

Probing the multicellular mechanisms of drug response in heterogeneous immune cell populations

Senior Director of Platform Technology, Apertura Gene Therapy

Liz Boydston

Specialized organelles for host-parasite interactions

Product Manager
Ginkgo Bioworks


Heike Blockus

Linking synaptic specificity to neuronal circuit function

Senior Scientist
Verge Genomics

Faculty 

Chuchu Zhang

Molecular and circuit mechanisms of nausea

Incoming Assistant Professor, UCLA


Genoa Warner

Female reproductive toxicology and endocrine disruption

Assistant Professor, 
New Jersey Institute of Technology


Lexy von Diezmann

Regulation of DNA repair outcomes in meiosis

Incoming Assistant Professor, University of Minnesota

Anna Vlasits

Circuit function and neurodiversity in the mammalian retina

Incoming Assistant Professor, University of Illinois, Chicago


Claudia Vásquez

Physics of epithelial lumen stability 

Assistant Professor, University of Washington


Meike van der Heijden 

Neural signals during dynamic cerebellar development

Incoming Assistant Professor, Virginia Tech

Supraja Varadarajan

Role of postsynaptic target activity in visual circuit regeneration

Incoming Assistant Professor, UTSW


Christina Towers

Autophagy dependence in cancer cells 

Assistant Professor
Salk Institute 


Valerie Tornini

Chromatin modifiers in vertebrate development

Incoming Assistant Professor, UCLA

Tina Termini

Hematopoietic stem cell and vascular regeneration

Assistant Professor, Fred Hutch


Jeannette Tenthorey

Evolution of antiviral defenses

Assistant Professor, UCSF

Jessica Stark

Engineering (Glyco)immunology


Incoming Assistant Professor, MIT


Chelsey Spriggs

Host-pathogen interactions during viral entry

Assistant Professor, University of Michigan

Yadira Soto-Feliciano

Transcriptional regulation by chromatin adaptor proteins


Assistant Professor, MIT


Heather Snell 

Cerebellar contribution to motor and non-motor disorders


Incoming Assistant Professor, Yale School of Medicine

Monique Smith

Social communication of pain and elucidating the neural circuits of empathy

Assistant Professor, UCSD

Delia Shelton

Solving grand challenges in environmental and human health 

Assistant Professor, U. Miami

Naima Sharaf

 Structure and function of the Neisseria meningitidis ABC methionine transporter system

Assistant Professor, Stanford University


Anusha Shankar

Avian physiological ecology (energetics, heterothermy) and transcriptomics

Incoming Assistant Professor, Tata Institute of Fundamental Research (TIFR) Hyderabad

Rachel Shahan

Single-cell insights into organ development

Incoming Assistant Professor, UCLA


Rebeca San Martin

Microenvironment influence on the 3D genome of prostate cancer

Assistant professor, Albert Einstein College of Medicine


Elise Savier  

Contribution of the secondary visual pathway to vision

Assistant Professor, University of Michigan


Elle Roberson  

Molecular genetic mechanisms of adult uterine remodeling

Assistant Professor, CU Anschutz


Lauren Rajakovich

Human gut microbial metabolism

Assistant Professor, University of Washington


Molly Ohainle

Cellular Barriers to HIV Infection

Assistant Professor, UC Berkeley


Lisa-Marie Nisbett 

Exploring the functional relationship between outer membrane biogenesis and lipid export pathways in mycobacteria


Incoming Assistant Professor, Cornell


Jasmine Nirody

Adaptive locomotion through complex environments

Assistant Professor, University of Chicago

Andrea Moffitt 

Genomic methods for liquid biopsies in cancer

Assistant Professor, Emory

Alexandria Miller

Structure and function of a SARS-CoV-2 accessory protein

Incoming Assistant Professor, University of Iowa


Maria Mikedis

Stem cell regulation during spermatogenesis

Assistant Professor, Cincinnati Children's

Molly Matty

Microbiome influences on animal behavior 

Assistant Professor, University of Portland

Romila Mascarenhas 

Vitamin B12 trafficking and disease

Incoming Assistant Professor, University of Oregon

Megan Martik

Gene regulatory networks in vertebrate development and regeneration

Assistant Professor, UC Berkeleyr

Maria Maldonado

Structure and function of respiratory complexes and supercomplexes

Assistant Professor, UC Davis

Prerna Malaney

Role of RNA-binding proteins in cancer

Assistant Professor, Dartmouth

Glennis Logsdon 

The sequence, structure, and evolution of human centromeres


Incoming Assistant Professor, Penn


Theresa Loveless

Synthetic cells that record their own history

Incoming Assistant Professor, Rice University

Lindsay LaFave

Chromatin state in lung adenocarcinoma

Assistant Professor, Albert Einstein College of Medicine

Jennifer Kong

Mechanisms of morphogen sensitivity underlying congenital heart defects

Assistant Professor, University of Washington

Tina Kim

Optical and molecular approaches to studying cortical neural circuits


Assistant Professor, 
UC Davis

Grace Kenney 

Uncovering new enzyme families in natural product biosynthesis


Incoming Assistant Professor, University of Pittsburgh


Aga Kendrick

Regulation of microtubule-based cellular transport

Incoming Assistant Professor, Salk Institute


Jessica Kelliher 

Host-pathogen interactions in the cytosol


Incoming Assistant Professor, Medical College of Wisconsin


Liangliang Hao

Engineering precision diagnostics for cancer

Assistant Professor, Boston University


Meghna Gupta

Peroxisomal fatty-acid transport and metabolism 


Incoming Assistant Professor, OHSU


Aleena Garner

Neural circuits in memory-sensory interplay

Assistant Professor, Harvard Medical School

Leonor Garcia-Bayona

Genetics and ecology of the intestinal Bacteroidales


Incoming Assistant Professor, Stanford

Allison Didychuk

DNA packaging in herpesviruses

Assistant Professor,
Yale University


Clarissa Durie

Visualizing bacterial secretion systems

Assistant Professor, University of Missouri

Anne Draelos

Real-time analysis and stimulation of neuronal populations

Assistant Professor, University of Michigan

Xintong Dong

Defensins and Mrgprs in skin immunity and itch

Assistant Professor, UT Dallas

Josefina del Mármol

Structural mechanism of olfaction


Assistant Professor, Harvard Medical School

Danfeng Cai

Chromatin organization and transcription regulation

Assistant Professor
Johns Hopkins School of Public Health


Jeeyun Chung

Spatiotemporal regulation of lipid metabolism

Assistant Professor, Harvard 

Jenna Christensen

Intracellular transport diversity in fungal and human cells

Incoming Assistant Professor, Northwestern University


Maureen Cetera

Cell coordination during morphogenesis


Assistant Professor, University of Minnesota Twin Cities

Simone Brixius-Anderko

Cytochrome P450 structure/function in human disease


Assistant Professor, University of Pittsburgh

N. Sumru Bayin

Neural stem cell diversity and age-dependent regenerative processes in the brain

Group Leader
Gurdon Institute, Cambridge University

Caroline Bartman

Developing new methods to measure in vivo tumor metabolism

Incoming Assistant Professor, University of Pennsylvania

Arianna Baggiolini

The developmental chromatin programs underlying oncogenic competence in melanoma

Group Leader, Institute of Oncology Research

Berfin Azizoğlu 

Vascularization in organ development and regeneration


Incoming Assistant Professor, UNC


Sweta Agrawal

Neural circuits underlying proprioception and motor control

Incoming Assistant Professor, Virginia Tech

Rebecca Adikes

Cell migration in vivo


Assistant Professor, Siena College


Sarah Ackerman

Neuron-glia dynamics in circuit development, refinement, and behavior

Assistant Professor,
Washington University School of Medicine

Alice Accorsi

Development and regeneration of complex sensory organs

Incoming Assistant Professor, UC Davis