Sofia Castore

Summer Intern - Research Assistant

Education: Harvard University

Research projects: Optimization of AAV Gene Therapy Vectors and Analysis of Responses to AAV Vectors and Transgenes

Research interest: Bioengineering and Viruses

Career Ambition: Pursue a path that enables my passion for bioengineering and desire for positive social impact

Vandenberghe Lab Team

Jackson W. Lau

Lab Manager

Education Background: B.S., Premedical and Health Studies, Massachusetts College of Pharmacy and Health Sciences. MHA Candidate 2021, Boston College
Research interest: Virology
Career Ambition: Institution/system level research lab management, standardization and improved utilization of resources from both research and clinical fields.
Memberships (if any): ACHE

Vandenberghe Lab Team

Dawid Maciorowski

Student Summer Intern - Research Assistant

Education: Molecular Biology Senior at Loyola University Chicago

Research projects: AAV Engineering for SARS-CoV-2

Research interest: Virology, Synthetic Virology, Infectious Diseases

Career Ambition: Physician-Scientist that manipulates natural/synthetic viruses to act as novel therapies

Memberships: American Society for Tropical Medicine and Hygiene (ASTMH) and The Scientific Research Honor Society (named scholar-2020)

Awards & Honors: Barry Goldwater Scholar (2020), Loyola University Biology Research Scholar (2019), Loyola University Mulcahy Research Scholar (2020)

Vandenberghe Lab Team

Wenlong Dai, PhD

Postdoctoral Research Fellow

Education: B.S. Biotechnology, China pharmaceutical University; PhD. Microbiology, Institute Pasteur of Shanghai, Chinese Academy of Sciences.

Research Project: Adeno-associated virus vector capsid assembly. Large-scale vector manufacturing.

Research Interest: Basic biology questions of Adeno-associate virus and to improve gene delivery efficiency of rAAV, by the strategies of rational vector design to overcome immunological barriers.

Career ambition: Continue with my academic career in biomedicine

Vandenberghe Lab Team

Anil Chekuri, PhD

Postdoctoral Research Fellow

Research projects:  Translational gene therapy approach to treat retinal degenerative diseases

Research interest: Broad research goal is to identify molecular mechanisms underlying retinal degeneration and thereby design therapeutic targets for treatment

Career Ambition: To evolve as an independent researcher in near future

Vandenberghe Lab Team

Maya Kim

Research Assistant

Education: B.S.- Neurobiology and Physiology, University of Connecticut; MS in Pathology and Laboratory Medicine, Boston University

Research Interest: My research interests are to study changes in gene expression that characterize diseases ranges from pathogenesis of hepatic steatosis to diseases relating to the retina to be able to develop an effective method in gene therapy and personalized medicine.

Career Ambition: My career ambitions are to develop into an independent scientist and become a strong contributor in the field of biomedical research.


Vandenberghe Lab Team

Aisling Ryan

Program Coordinator

Vandenberghe Lab Team

Nerea Zabaleta Lasarte PhD

Postdoctoral Research Fellow

Education: Degree in Biochemistry, Master’s degree in Biomedical Research, Doctoral degree in Biomedical Research

Research Project: Study of host factors involved in AAV transduction

Research Interest: Gene therapy

Career ambition: Continue with my academic career in biomedicine

Vandenberghe Lab Team

Urja Bhatt

Research Assistant

Education: MS Molecular and Cell Biology, B.Tech Biotechnology

Research Project: Use diverse molecular biology tools to perform cloning

Research Interest: Synthetic Biology, Molecular Biology

Career Ambition:

  • Short-term: Achieve excellence in practicing my education, skills and expertise in Molecular Biology & Bioanalytical techniques.
  • Long-Term: Gain meaningful experience to work for betterment of society.

Awards and Honors:

  • Awarded GOLD MEDAL & Merit Scholarship in Biotechnology for consistently outstanding performance, D.Y. Patil University, 2016.
  • Accorded prestigious Scholarship for Higher Education (SHE), Gov. of India, 2011.
  • Won Amul Vidya Bhusan award for academic excellence in science stream, 2011.
  • Awarded Certificate of Honor and Memento by current Prime Minister of India, Shree Narendra Modi for participation in National Biodiversity Quiz, 2007

Vandenberghe Lab Team

Cheikh Diop

Research Assistant

Education: BA in Biochemistry, Suffolk University, Boston, MA

Research Project: Building AAV capsid libraries

Research Interest: Gene therapy, Infectious diseases, drug  discovery

Career Ambition: Gain more research experience while actively contributing to the research projects carried out at the Vandenberghe lab. Eventually pursue a PhD in molecular biology / biochemistry in graduate school

Membership: ACS



Vandenberghe Lab Team

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20 Staniford Street, Boston, MA 02114