People

Mary Jo LaDu, Ph.D.

Position: Professor

Training: BA History, Grinnell College

PhD Physiology, University of Illinois at Chicago

Post Doc Pathology, University of Chicago

Lab Focus: Understanding increased AD risk in APOE4 females.

Response to COVID-19: https://vimeo.com/412895544

2017 UIC IGNITE Campaign: https://vimeo.com/250495470

2016 UIC College of Medicine Innovation Award: https://vimeo.com/184856761

Lab Staff

Name: Jason York

Position: Postdoctoral Research Associate

Degree: PhD Animal Sciences, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign

Research Focus: Genetics and behavior of the EFAD mice in response to the universal biological variables of AD.

Name: Deebika Balu

Position: Research Assistant Professor

Degree: PhD Biological Sciences (Neurobiology Program), University of Illinois at Chicago

Research Focus: Neuroinflammation in the EFAD mice in response to the universal biological variables of AD.

Name: Ana Carolina Valencia Olvera

Position: Postdoctoral Research Associate

Degree: PhD Biomedical Sciences, Biomedical Research Institute UNAM, Mexico City, Mexico

Research Focus: Development of a mechanistic biomarker for AD in human plasma including oligomeric Aβ and modulation of the plasma lipoprotein profile.

Graduate Students

Juan Maldonado Weng

Degree: BSc General Biology, University of Puerto Rico, Cayey

Program: GEMS - Anatomy and Cell Biology

Thesis Title: The effects of the universal biological variables of AD on the gut microbiome.

Aimee James Karstens

Degree: MA Clinical Psychology, University of Illinois at Chicago

Program: Clinical Psychology

Thesis Title: The Mediterranean Diet as an intervention to improve cognition in obese female older adults: plasma lipoprotein profiles as a surrogate biomarker for cognition.

Cutler Lewandowski

Degree: BS Neuroscience, University of Minnesota - Twin Cities

Program: MSTP - Medicinal Chemistry

Thesis Title: Development of selective ABCA1 inducers as multifunctional therapeutic candidates.

Joseph Crutisan

Degree: BS Kinesiology/Neuroscience, Iowa State University

Program: MSTP - Biomedical Engineering

Thesis Title: Determining the influence of age, sex, and APOE status on viscoelastic properties of the brain measured through Magnetic Resonance Elastography.

Helena Xeros

Degree: BS Biology and Philosophy of Science, Washington University in St. Louis

Program: MD/MS Program for Clinical Translational Research

Lab Technicians

Rebecca Ainis

Position: Lab Technician

Degree: BS in Psychology, Neuroscience, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign

Honors/Grants: Honorable mention in the 2019 College of Medicine Research Forum, Phi Eta Sigma Honors Society, Dean's List

Future Plans: Graduate School

Cat Humpal

Position: Lab Technician

Degree: BS in Biological Sciences, University of Illinois at Chicago

Project: Investigating APOE genotype as a modulator of modifiable risk factors in the identification of cognitive issues within at risk populations.

Future Plans: Graduate School

Student Research Associates

Name: Bingtao Xiang

Major: Honors College, Biochemistry

Project: The plasma lipoprotein profile as a potential AD biomarker

Honors/Grants: 2019 Honors College Travel Grant, 2018 Honors College Research Grant, 2nd place Chicago SFN Symposium, GPPA Medicine Program

Future Plans: Degree in medicine

Name: Zarak Islam

Major: Honors College, Biological Sciences

Project: The interplay of sex and genotype on the gut microbiome

Honors/Grants: 2018, 2019 Honors College Research Grant, Student Worker of the Year, GPPA Medicine Program

Future Plans: Degree in medicine

Name: Mehul Patnam

Major: Honors College, Biological Sciences

Project: Therapeutic effect of apoE antibodies in EFAD mice

Honors/Grants: 2019 Honors College Research Grant, GPPA Medicine Program

Future Plans: Degree in medicine

Name: Yaajnavalki Varanasi

Major: Honors College, Neuroscience

Project: Sex differences in the relationship between APOE and AD: Role of sexual differentiation

Honors/Grants: Chancellor's Undergraduate Research Award

Future plans: Degree in medicine

Name: Ashwini Deshpande

Major: Honors College, Biological Sciences

Project: Sex differences in the relationship between APOE and AD: Role of sexual differentiation

Honors/Grants: 2019 Honors College Research Grant, GPPA Medicine Program

Future plans: Degree in medicine

Name: Tamara Perez Ramos

Major: Honors College, Neuroscience

Project: Estrogen therapy and APOE4 risk in Alzheimer's tested in female EFAD mice

Honors/Grants: L@S GANAS Research Fellowship, Chancellor's Undergraduate Research Award

Future Plans: Degree in medicine

Name: Shreya Bellur

Major: Honors College, Neuroscience

Project: Estrogen therapy and APOE4 risk in Alzheimer's tested in female EFAD mice

Honors/Grants: 2019 Honors College Research Grant, GPPA Medicine Program

Future Plans: Degree in medicine

Name: Annabelle Moore

Major: Honors College, Bioengineering

Honors/Grants: GPPA Medicine Program

Future Plans: Degree in medicine

Name: Zoe Bridges

Major: Biological Sciences

Honors/Grants: Chancellor's Undergraduate Research Award

Future Plans: Graduate school

Name: Shreya Magesh

Major: Honors College, Biological Sciences

Future Plans: Degree in medicine

Name: Fiona Myers

Major: Honors College, Psychology

Future Plans: Graduate school

Name: Megan Bi

Major: Honors College, Biological Sciences

Honors/Grants: GPPA Medicine Program

Future Plans: Degree in medicine

Name: Julie Gawenda

Major: Honors College, Bioengineering

Honors: Society of Women Engineers Knowles Scholarship

Future Plans: Degree in medicine

Name: Anooshay Aamir

Major: Honors College, Biomedical Engineering

Future Plans: Degree in medicine

Name: Medha Venigalla

Major: Honors College, Neuroscience

Honors/Grants: GPPA Medicine Program

Future Plans: Degree in medicine

Name: Matt Selvaraj

Major: Honors College, Neuroscience

Honors/Grants: GPPA Medicine Program

Future Plans: Degree in medicine

Name: Clare Mielczarek

Major: Honors College, Neuroscience

Future Plans: Degree in medicine

Name: Pritika Sharma

Major: Honors College, Neuroscience

Future Plans: Degree in medicine

Name: Shruthi Krishna

Major: Honors College, Neuroscience

Honors/Grants: GPPA Medicine

Future Plans: Degree in medicine

Name: Halley Bergen

Major: Honors College, Biochemistry

Future Plans: Degree in medicine

Name: Allen Shi

Major: Honors College, Biochemistry

Honors/Grants: GPPA medicine

Future Plans: Degree in medicine

Name: Kelly Duong

Major: Honors College, Biological sciences

Honors/Grants: GPPA medicine

Future Plans: Degree in medicine