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Research Assistant

  • Marina Zieger

    Marina Zieger, Ph.D.

    Marina obtained her Ph.D. from the University of Michigan and worked in the Punzo lab from 2013-2016. After testing if improving cell autonomous metabolism in photoreceptors can also delay rod and cone death in the sodium iodate model of Age-Related Macular Degeneration, Marina made the unexpected finding,  that in some mouse strains photoreceptors degenerate slower in females than males when degeneration is induced by sodium iodate. Currently  Marian works the Müller lab here at the Gene Therapy Center.

  • Adytia Venkatesh

    Adytia Venkatesh, Ph.D.

    Adi obtained his Ph.D. in 2016 from the UMass Chan Medical School. He was the first Ph.D. student to graduate from Dr. Punzo's lab. His thesis work focused on uderstanding the role of the insulin/mTOR pathway during cone degeneration in Retinitis Pigmentosa.

    Currently Aditya is working at Idera Pharmaceutical in Cambridge Massachusetts.

  • Lolita Petit

    Lolita Petit, Ph.D.

    Lolita Petit recieved her Ph.D. degree from the University of Nates, Faculty of Medicine, Nates, France. Lolita has been trained in the laboratory of Dr. Fabienne Rolling where she established a gene therapy for the PDE6-beta mutation in a canin model. During her time in the Punzo lab (2014-2017) Lolita worked on AAV mediated photoreceptor transduction, photoreceptor metabolism and as it relates to retinal degeneration and on a gene therapy to delay cone death in Retinitis Pigmentosa.

  • William Monis

    William Monis

    William Monis was a rotation student in the Punzo lab in 2011 and is currently a Ph.D. Student in Lab of Dr. Gregory Pazour, Ph.D. at UMass Chan.

  • Shan Ma

    Shan Ma, Ph.D.

    Shan obtained her Ph.D. in 2015 from the Tianjin Medical University Eye Hospital in China and was trained in Dr. Claudio Punzo's lab from 2011-2016. Her Ph.D. work focused on studying the role of mTOR in cone photoreceptors. Currently Shan is persuing a career as an optometrist.

  • Fernanda Langelotto

    Fernanda Langelotto, Ph.D.

    Fernanda obtained her Ph.D. degree from the University of Naples and did a Postdocotral Fellowship in the Punzo lab from 2010-2012. Currently Fernanda is a Research Fellow at Childrens Hospital, Boston MA

  • Chantel LaFond

    Chantel LaFond

    Chantel LaFond was a Research Associate in the Punzo lab from 2010-2012. She has been instrumental in setting up the lab and getting the research up and running.

  • Elena Filippova

    Elena Filippova, M.D.

    Elena worked in the Punzo lab until 2012, where she was involed in studying aspects of Diabetic Retinopathy and Retinitis Pigmentosa. Currently Elena is a Research Associate II at an other lab here in UMass Chan.

  • Joris Cipi

    Joris Cipi

    Joris graduated from Clark University with a degree chemistry. He joined the lab in 2017 as research associate and left in 2019 to join research in the private sector.