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Outstanding Mid-Thesis Research Award Winners

In recognition of a student whose research, in the judgement of the faculty, profoundly impacts their field.


Erica Kwiatkowski
Parhyale hawaiensis: a genetically-tractable model organism for the study of circatidal rhythms
Mentor: Patrick Emery, PhD


Shawn Egri
Molecular study of amino acids
Mentor:  Kuang Shen, PhD

Kathleen Morrill
Ancestry-inclusive dog genomics challenges popular breed stereotypes and enables mapping of psychiatric disease related variants
Mentor:  Elinor Karlsson, PhD


Mariana Noto Guillen
Assembling stable syntrophic Escherichia coli communities by comprehensively identifying beneficiaries of secreted goods
Mentor:  Amir Mitchell, PhD

Nicholas Peterson
Surveillance of Host- and Pathogen-derived metabolites in innate immunity
Mentor: Read Pukkila-Worley, MD

I-Hao Wang
Reconstruction of Olfactory Neural Circuits Using Single Molecule Approaches
Mentor: Paul Greer, PhD


Chantal Ferguson
ApoE RNAi-modulation:  Novel Strategy for Treatment of Alzheimer’s Disease
Mentor: Anastasia Khvorova, PhD

Kevin Gao
Perturbing Nucleic Acid Sensing in Murine Models to Identify Novel Mechanisms of Auto-immunity and Auto-inflammation
Mentor: Ann Rothstein, PhD


Georgia Gunner
Elucidating Roles for Microglia in Sensory Experience-dependent Synaptic Remodeling
Mentor: Dorothy Schafer, PhD


Julia Alterman
Di-valent srRNAs:  New Chemical Scaffold for Modulation of Gene Expression in CNS
Mentor: Anastasia Khvorova, PhD

Ameer Elaimy
Regulation of Breast Cancer Stem Cells by VEGF/Neuropilin Signaling
Mentor: Arthur Mercurio, PhD


Janelle Hayes
Structure and Mechanism of an Exceptionally Powerful Molecular Motor
Mentor: Brian Kelch, PhD


Arvin Iracheta-Vellve
The roles of the inflammasome and IRF3-mediated signaling in alcoholic liver disease
Mentor: Gyongyi Szabo, MD, PhD

Alison Philbrook
Molecular mechanisms of synaptic development and remodeling
Mentor: Michael Francis, PhD


Spencer Adams
Molecular and Organismal-level Studies of Bioluminescence
Mentor: Stephen Miller, PhD

Leyuan Ma
Targeting Drug Resistance and Residual Cancer Stem Cells in Chronic Myelogenous Leukemia
Mentor: Michael Green, MD, PhD