Subramaniam Sanker

Research Principal Sr.
Ph.D.-University of Bombay, India
M.S.- University of Hyderabad, India

Role in the lab: Cell Biology, Biochemistry, Molecular biology, Interactome mapping, Drug discovery.

Current research project(s) I’m working on:

  1. Target Identification of Histone deacetylase regulated genes as candidates for drug development in depression using Chip-seq and Cut and run technologies.
  2. Interactome mapping for Circadian rhythm regulating transcription factors, Clk, ARNTL, Sirt1, NPAS2 using Apex2 chimeric constructs and biotin phenol.
  3. Development of Cre-recombinase mediated sh-RNA constructs targeting Histone deacetylases in the Ventral tegmental area of the mouse brain.
  4. Phenotypic Drug discovery targeting Circadian Rhythm genes expressed in Retino hypothalamic tract as therapeutics for Jet lag.

Outside the lab, I enjoy reading scientific nonfiction, jigsaw puzzles, and nature walks.

Dominic Skeele

Research Specialist
B.S. in Neuroscience from Skidmore College

Role in the lab: I help manage the rodent colony, discern genotypes for experimental animals, and assist in circadian phenotyping. I also work closely with our Sr Scientist, Sanker, in various cell culture work.

Current Research Projects: P50 CARRS and assist in most mouse-model studies in the lab.

Outside of the lab, I enjoy hiking, writing music, climbing, and working out.

Jennifer Burns

Graduate Student Researcher
B.S. Seattle Pacific University

Electrophysiology, microscopy

Assessing rhythms in parvalbumin cell gene expression and electrophysiology in mouse prefrontal cortex.

Outside the lab, I enjoy playing with/going for walks with my dog, fostering cats for Humane Animal Rescue, and taking naps.

Kaitlyn Petersen

Graduate Student Researcher
B.S. Neuroscience from Baylor University

I use optogenetics to manipulate neuronal firing in mice and then perform behavioral assays related to mood. Other molecular techniques include RNAseq, qPCR, and immunohistochemistry.

My main project is focused on the association between mood disorders and circadian rhythm disruption. I manipulate molecular rhythms in the mouse suprachiasmatic nucleus using optogenetics and determine the behavioral and molecular effects. I am also studying the baseline relationship between circadian rhythms in various regions of the brain and the body.

Outside of the lab, I like to snuggle with my dog, Hazel. I also enjoy cooking and trying out new restaurants and breweries in the city.

Lauren DePoy

Postdoctoral Associate
Ph.D. Emory University
B.S. Gettysburg College

My areas of expertise are operant conditioning, primarily intravenous self-administration, sex differences, and developmental circadian rhythm disruption.

I am investigating the mechanisms by which circadian rhythm disruptions during different developmental periods (prenatal and adolescent) affect substance use later in life.

Outside of the lab, I spend most of my time with my husband and our dog. My hobbies include hiking/camping, watching hockey, crocheting, and playing strategy card and board games.

Madeline R. Scott

Postdoctoral Associate
Ph.D. in Neurobiology, University of Alabama at Birmingham
B.S. in Neuroscience, Rhodes College

Ultradian and circadian rhythms in human postmortem brain tissue

My current research centers around characterizing the 12 h rhythmic transcriptome in the brain and how it’s altered in schizophrenia. I use human postmortem brain tissue to directly identify 12 h rhythms in the human brain and animal/cell models to investigate the mechanisms underlying our findings.

Outside of the lab, I love a good Netflix or podcast binge, pre-pandemic I used to enjoy exploring Pittsburgh’s many breweries, and post-pandemic I’ve substituted by setting up virtual dinners/game nights with old friends.

Sam-Moon Kim

Postdoctoral Associate
Ph.D., Texas A&M University

Cell-based assay to study molecular circadian rhythms.

I’m working on alterations in adolescent sleep and circadian rhythm as potential factors that increase the risk of substance use disorders.

Outside the lab, I enjoy reading mystery & crime novels and trying new restaurants and breweries.

Ioannis H Migias

Research Specialist and Laboratory Manager
B.S. Cellular & Molecular Biology – West Chester University
Master of Business Administration – Waynesburg University

My role in the lab/area of expertise:

  • Responsible for the lab’s project, supply chain, and asset management, resource allocation, protocol compliance, and accounts monitoring to ensure we are well equipped to carry out our experiments
  • Tasked with managing our animal colony to the specifications required by the target research project which includes both husbandry and genotyping
  • Assist in any research project experiments being pursued by the lab’s graduate students, post-docs, and the PI
  • If needed, I also design and engineer specialized tools and adapters via Fused Deposition Modeling (FDM) to aid in experiments

I’m working on alterations in adolescent sleep and circadian rhythm as potential factors that increase the risk of substance use disorders.
I am actively training in Stereotaxic Surgery and Whole-Cell Patch Clamp Electrophysiology to conduct experiments that will study the Suprachiasmatic Nucleus’ role in Jetlag and the identification of therapeutic targets for the treatment of bipolar disorder.

When I’m not in the lab, I love to spend my time learning new things like teaching myself to code in the context of designing and building robots, 3d modeling and prototyping, amateur astronomy/astrophotography, and learning and perfecting the countless different ways to make a delicious cup of coffee. I also enjoy aquascaping in my Cherry Shrimp aquarium and playing Halo or Civilization on my computer.

Hannah Dollish

Postdoctoral Associate
Ph.D. Neuroscience – University of Arizona
B.S. Neuroscience and Slavic Studies – University of Pittsburgh

I am a post-doctoral scholar in the lab with a focus on the molecular and genetic mechanisms of phase-shifting circadian rhythms. I have a background in behavioral and circadian science with experience using humans, rodents, and drosophila to develop translational approaches to treat various circadian rhythm disorders or co-occurring sleep disturbances and rhythm misalignment in psychiatric diseases.

I am currently working on using fibroblasts, cultured SCN cells, and rodent models to explore the molecular mechanisms behind phase shifting, specifically in a jetlag model as well as test various novel compounds and methods that can potentially be used to rapidly align rhythms after abrupt time zone and photoperiodic changes. I am also working with the CARRS center on translational research between rodents and humans in treating circadian misalignment in pre-teens and teenagers as well as other psychiatric diseases such as bipolar disorder.

Outside of the lab I am an avid hiker and enjoy doing yoga. I also play Dungeons and Dragons as well as competitive Pokémon. I also enjoy reading and painting as well as baking.

Aaron Jenkins

Postdoctoral Associate
MD, University of Kentucky College of Medicine
B.S., Emory University

Area of expertise in the lab: Molecular rhythms in human postmortem brain tissue

I am currently investigating cell-type specific abnormalities in molecular rhythms associated with psychiatric diagnoses within the subgenual anterior cingulate cortex with complementary studies in transgenic mice

Outside of the lab, I enjoy exploring the Strip District with my partner and our two dogs, Oliver and Winston.  I also enjoy reality TV shows on Bravo, horror movies, African art, pretending I’m an interior designer and musing over Britney Spears.

Mariya Tsyglakova

Postdoctoral Associate
Ph.D. Virginia Tech
B.S. American University

Area of expertise in the lab: Molecular and genetic mechanisms of bipolar disorder

My current project is focused on identifying direct and functional targets of histone deacetylase inhibition in the ventral tegmental area.

Outside of the lab, I enjoy reading, baking, playing board games, and exploring the city.

Taylor Stowe

Postdoctoral Associate
Ph.D. in Physiology and Pharmacology
B.S. in Neuroscience and Behavioral Biology, Emory

I am a postdoc in the lab with expertise in behaviors with a specific focus on behavioral models of addiction. My major projects in the lab involve rhythms in mouse cocaine self-administration (and other behaviors) and electrophysiology. My role in the lab is to continue to run experiments and write papers then eventually develop my own projects that I can use to start my own lab one day.

My current project is examining diurnal rhythms in D1 and D2 cell excitability and if there are changes after cocaine self-administration. I will also determine if NPAS2 plays a role in D1 and D2 excitability and changes with self-administration.  To expand on these data, I will also determine diurnal rhythms in cholinergic interneuron excitability.

Outside the lab, I enjoy reading with my cats, video games, tennis, crafting, coffee, comics, and star wars