Graduate students from a variety of programs work with faculty in the Department of Biochemistry
Olusegun Adepoju (Ade)
I am originally from Bangladesh and earned BS and MS degree in Biochemistry and Molecular Biology at University of Dhaka, Bangladesh. Currently, I am a 2nd year PhD student in the department of Biochemistry, Virginia Tec and doing my PhD research in Dr. Jinsong Zhu lab. My research focuses on the “Molecular mechanism of juvenile hormone (JH) and its cross-talk with crucial insect hormone 20 Hydroxyecdysone (20 E) in Aedes aegypti” which is important to explore the regulatory mechanisms of these two insect hormones in mosquito development/reproduction and designing novel insecticides to prevent the spreading of these deadly disease causing vectors.
Personal interest: Travelling, learning new things, teaching, community based voluntary works etc.
I am originally from Florence, South Carolina and earned a BS degree in Chemistry at Winthrop University. I am a second year Master student in the Sobrado lab. My research focuses on the mechanistic studies of N-hydroxylating monooxygenases which are essential for fungal pathogenesis. This research can lead to the development of new generation of drugs.
I am originally from Manassas, VA and earned a BS degree in both Biology and Biochemistry at Virginia Tech. I am a 3rd year student in the Slade lab. My research focuses on host-pathogen interactions which is important for bacterial infection and invasion.
I have been interested in science and biology since childhood when I watched countless hours of nature documentaries with the great Sir David Attenborough, leading to a significant portion of my youth walking around looking for birds. I count one of my greatest achievements as an undergrad as finding and identifying 89 species of birds at the Virginia Tech Duck Pond over the course of a few months. Despite the endless string of heart crushing losses, I am a diehard fan of all things Hokies, Nationals, Capitals, Wizards and DC United. I believe my passion for disappointing sports teams has prepared me well for a career in science in which failures are inevitable. I'm ready to make a difference in the fight against cancer, and the Slade Lab is a perfect place to do this.
AEM Rubayet Elahi
I am originally from Bangladesh and earned a MS degree in Parasitology from University of Dhaka in 2011. I am a 3rd year student in the Klemba lab. My research focuses on Plasmodium falciparum biology which is the cause for the deadliest form of malaria. I am huge fan of the great game of Cricket. I like to hike and drive around the curvy roads of country side.
GBCB (Bevan Lab)
GBCB (Zhu Lab)
I am a first year student currently conducting lab rotations. I am originally from Northern Virginia and I earned my BS degree in Chemistry at Virginia Wesleyan College, where my undergraduate research experience concerned antibiotics derived from sea sponges.
GBCB (Mukhopadhyay Lab)
I am originally from Indonesia and earned a BS degree in Biology at Bandung Institute of Technology (ITB). I am a first year student in the Biswarup's lab. My research focuses on redox communication within cow's rumen microbiome which is important for feed efficiency. I'm also interested in genomics research and analyzing the data with computational tools. In terms of hobbies, I enjoy cooking and traveling.
Liwu Li Lab (Biology)
I am originally from China and earned a Bachelor of Science degree and a Bachelor of Arts degree in the Northwest University in China. I am a 4th year graduate student in Dr. Jianyong Li’s lab. My research focuses on structure-function relationship of aromatic amino acid decarboxylase and acetaldehyde synthase, which is important for insect neurotransmitter production and cuticle formation. My interest is reading, swimming, painting and music.
I am originally from Costa Rica and earned a BS degree in Biotechnology Engineering at Costarican Institute of Technology. I am a first year student in the Sobrado Lab. My research focuses on the characterization of enzymes which is important for their use as potential drug targets.
I am originally from outside of Lynchburg, VA and earned a B.S. degree in Biochemistry at Virginia Tech. I am a 5th year graduate student in the White Lab. My research focuses on the recycling of S-adenosyl-L-methionine (SAM) in Methanocaldococcus jannaschii, which is important to understand as SAM dependent enzymes are often critical for many metabolic processes, such as polyamine biosynthesis. These enzymes are inhibited by the SAM-derived products: S-adenosyl-L-homocysteine, methylthioadenosine, and 5’-deoxyadenosine. These SAM-derived metabolites have been described in bacteria to be recycled in “universal” pathways, that are not occurring in methanogenic Archaea, such as M. jannaschii. Thus, my work has involved the characterization of several novel enzymes and new pathways that our laboratory considers is of ancient origin, due to the antiquity of methanogensis being the first discovered form of respiration over 3.5 billion years ago.
Han Nam (M.S.)
Michelle Pasier (M.S.)
GBCB (Mukhopadhyay Lab)
I am originally from Charlotte, NC and earned a BS degree in Animal Science at NC State University with a minor in Genetics. I am a first year student in the Mukhopadhyay lab. My research focuses on the redox communication of the microbes within the rumen, which is important for understanding how to optimize their feed efficiency. I have one cat named Stella and I like reading and being outside.
My enthusiasm for science, but most importantly for research, first took root at the small, private liberal arts school of Mars Hill College. Although I began my undergraduate education with a clear, defined purpose of majoring in biology and minoring in pre-professional studies for a career path as a medical doctor, it did not take long after my microbiology course to realize that I had some underlying passion and excitement for what the naked eye could not see. After receiving my BS in Biology, I continued this new found love for bacteria by following the mountains up to earn my MS in Molecular Biology at Appalachian State University in Boone, NC where I studied the effect of transport systems on biofilm formation in the bacterium Vibrio cholerae. I am excited to be following my passion here at Virginia Tech in the Slade Lab where he wants to make an impact on the microbiology and cancer field. I am a second year student and my research focuses on studying and characterizing the roles of embedded and secreted outer membrane of Fusobacterium nucleatum in infection, signaling, and disease most importantly colorectal cancer.
I am originally from San Jose, Costa Rica and earned a BS degree in Biotechnology Engineering at Technological Institute of Costa Rica. I am a 1 year student in the Sobrado lab. My research focuses on determining the chemical mechanism, 3D-structure, and the identification of inhibitors of flavoenzymes important for pathogenesis in Aspergillus fumigatus, Trypanosoma cruzi, and Mycobacterium tuberculosis which is important for designing specific inhibitors that will be used as chemotherapeutic drugs against these enzymes that are essential for viability in several human pathogens. I am a proud Costa Rican Hokie!
I am originally from New Haven, New York and earned a BS degree in biochemistry at SUNY Oswego. I am a first year student currently doing rotations
I am originally from Blacksburg and earned a BS degree in biology at the university of Nebraska-Lincoln. I am a 4th yr student in the Xu lab. My research focuses on identifying and characterizing small molecule natural compounds that inhibit amyloid which is important for treating Alzheimers disease and Type II diabetes. My longterm career aspiration is to serve as a science educator and basketball coach.