Recent Student Theses

HST is committed to educating physicians, engineers and scientists who have a deep understanding of the scientific basis of medicine and who are equipped for a career of interdisciplinary research. The program also seeks to train individuals who will engage in productive independent investigation of important problems at the interface of technology and clinical medicine. This list of recent graduates and their thesis titles below demonstrates the breadth of our students' research, spanning engineering/physical sciences, basic biological sciences and clinical applications.

2018-19 Graduates Thesis Titles

Doctor of Medicine (MD)

Eric Huttenlocher Bent
Mechanisms of Microenvironment Paracrine Signaling in Cancer Chemoresistance
Research Supervisors: 

Walter W. Chen
Examining the Consequences of Mitochondrial Dysfunction via Genetic Screening and Profiling of Mitochondrial Metabolites
Research Supervisor: D. Sabatini

Yuyin Chen
Engineered Biofilms for Materials Production and Patterning
Research Supervisor: T. K. Lu

Michael E. Coulter
Two stories of neurodevelopment: Exosome-mediated secretion of sonic hedgehog and somatic mutation in disorders of DNA damage repair
Research Supervisor: C. A. Walsh

Alissa M. D'Gama
It Takes Brains: Germline and Somatic Mutations in Neurodevelopmental Disorders
Research Supervisor: C. A. Walsh

Wataru Ebina
Combinatorial Pathway Modulation toward Ex Vivo Maintenance and Propagation of Hematopoietic Stem Cells
Research Supervisor: D. J. Rossi

Wilfredo F. García Beltrán
Innate immune reconstitution in the humanized bone marrow-liver-thymus (HuBLT) mouse model is essential for adaptive immune responses to HIV-1 infection and can be enhanced via AAV-mediated human cytokine delivery
Research Supervisor: M. Altfeld

Saurav D. Haldar
Investigating the Molecular Mechanisms of Action of Lenalidomide and Other Immunomodulatory Derivatives
Research Supervisor: B. L. Ebert

Xinli Hu
Discovery and Functional Interpretation of Genetic Risk in Autoimmune Diseases
Research Supervisor: S. Raychaudhuri

Kristin A. Knouse
Prevalence and prevention of large-scale somatic copy number alterations
Research Supervisor: A. Amon

Charlotte Lee
Deciphering Multi-Dimensional Proteomics from Resected Lung Adenocarcinomas
Research Supervisor: F. L. Michor

Johanna M. Lee
Prospective Study of Age-Dependent Changes in Propofol- and Sevoflurane-Induced Electroencephalogram Oscillations in Anesthetized Children
Research Supervisors: E. N. Brown, P. L. Purdon

Brian T. Li
Functional interactions in the hematopoietic stem cell niche: stem cells, endothelial cells, and macrophages
Research Supervisor: L. I. Zon

Jennifer A. Lo
Regulation of the inflamed tumor phenotype in melanoma immunotherapy
Research Supervisor: D. E. Fisher

Jesus M. Luevano, Jr.
HIV-Associated Changes in the Human Gut Microbiome and Impact on Disease Progression
Research Supervisor: D. Kwon

Ethan L. MacKenzie
Targeting Sonic Hedgehog Subtype Medulloblastoma with Isotype Specific HDAC Inhibitors
Research Supervisor: R. A. Segal

Xiaoli Mi
Lessons from Using Genome Editing to Create a Faithful Model of a Novel Congenital Anemia
Research Supervisor: V. G. Sankaran

Anthony T. Nguyen
A Novel Program of Ubiquitination Remodels the Erythroid Proteome During Terminal Differentiation
Research Supervisor: D. Finley

Ryan J. Park
A genome-wide CRISPR screen identifies a restricted set of HIV host dependency factors
Research Supervisor: B. D. Walker

Sarvagna S. Patel
Identifying Resistance Mechanisms to BET Bromodomain Inhibition in Neuroblastoma
Research Supervisor: K. Stegmaier

Derek T. Peters
Isogenic Human Pluripotent Stem Cell Models of Cardiovascular Disease-Associated Genetic Variation
Research Supervisors: C. A. Cowan, K. Musunuru

Emily A. Rosen
Understanding the Mechanism by which Mutant Calreticulin Induces Myeloproliferative Neoplasms
Research Supervisor: A. Mullally

Joseph A. Rosenthal
Assessing the Effect of Epigenetic Dysregulation on Oncogenesis and Immunocompetence in a Mouse Model
Research Supervisor: D. A. Sinclair

Jessica L. Ruiz
Nanoanalytical Analysis of Bisphosphonate-Induced Alterations of Microcalcifications using a 3D Hydrogel Platform
Research Supervisor: E. Aikawa

Alireza Samiei
Characterization of the Sirt6 knockout in Drosophila melanogaster
Research Supervisor: M. B. Feany

Yu Shao
Towards Neurophysiological Biomarkers of Brain Vulnerability: Frontal Alpha Waves Predict the Propensity for Intraoperative Burst Suppression
Research Supervisor: E. N. Brown

Anji Tang
Establishing the clinical feasibility of a transparent computed-tomography based fractional flow reserve (CT-FFR) algorithm
Research Supervisor: P. J. Tonellato

Rohit Thummalapalli
EZH2 inhibition induces endogenous retroviral elements and primes immunogenicity in mesenchymal small cell lung cancer
Research Supervisor: W. C. Hahn

Belinda Wang
Mechanisms of resistance to MAPK pathway inhibition in RAS-mutant cancers
Research Supervisor: W. C. Hahn

Shuyu Wang
Studies of amino acid sensing by the mTORC1 pathway
Research Supervisor: D. Sabatini

Erika K. Williams
Coding of internal senses: vagal gut-to-brain circuits
Research Supervisor: S. D. Liberles

David D. Yang
Evaluation of the Efficacy and Side-Effects of Androgen Deprivation Therapy in Nonmetastatic Prostate Cancer
Research Supervisor: P. L. Nguyen

Travis Zack
The Landscape of Structural Variants within Pediatric High Grade Glioma and Cortical Glioblastoma
Research Supervisor: E. M. Van Allen

Medical Engineering and Medical Physics (PhD)

Brian Y. Chang
Determination of Physiologic States during Mechanical Circulatory Support through Characterization of Device-Organ Interactions
Research Supervisor: E. R. Edelman

Jennifer Chen
Evolutionary signatures for unearthing functional elements of the human genome
Research Supervisor: A. Regev

Tyler R. Clites
An Agonist-antagonist Myoneural Interface for Proprioception from a Neurally-Controlled Prosthesis
Research Supervisor: H. M. Herr

Lina A. Colucci
Quantifying Fluid Overload with Portable Magnetic Resonance Sensors
Research Supervisor: M. J. Cima

Conor R. Cullinane
Evaluation of the Mark III Spacesuit: An Experimental and Computational Modeling Approach
Research Supervisor: L. A. Stirling

Atray C. Dixit
Methods For Bounding Genetic Nonlinearity
Research Supervisor: A. Regev

Taylor E. Gill
Selective Targeting of MYC by Antisense Oligonucleotides
Research Supervisor: D. G. Anderson

Isha H. Jain
Oxygen, the Invisible Orchestrator of Metabolism and Disease: A Focus on Mitochondrial And Peroxisomal Dysfunction
Research Supervisor: V. K. Mootha

Justin W. Lee
Computational Imaging and Analysis in Breast Cancer
Research Supervisor: G. Barbastathis

Joy E. Louveau
A Statistical Mechanics approach to vaccination against HIV
Research Supervisor: A. Chakraborty

Benjamin E. Maimon
Strategies For Optogenetic Stimulation of Deep Tissue Peripheral Nerves
Research Supervisor: H. M. Herr

Benjamin E. Mead
Building a Paneth Cell: Exploring Cellular Origin and Function to Inform Intestinal Host-Microbe Interaction and Disease
Research Supervisor: J. M. Karp

Changwook Min
Minaturized Electromagnetic Biosensors for Circulating Cancer Biomarker Detection
Research Supervisor: H. Lee

Rida Mourtada
Engineering Membrane-Selective Antibiotic Peptides to Combat Multidrug Resistance
Research Supervisor: L. Walensky

Jeffrey N. Stout
MRI based cerebral oxygenation measures in humans: technical development for use across lifespan
Research Supervisor: E. Adalsteinsson

Speech and Hearing Biosciences and Technology (PhD)

Samiya A. Alkhairy
An Analytic Model of the Cochlea and Functional Interpretations
Research Supervisor: C. A. Shera

Rachelle L. Horwitz-Martin
Acoustic Features of Impaired Articulation Due to Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis
Research Supervisors: T. F. Quatieri, J. R. Green

Koeun Lim
Dynamics Human Decision-Making: Vestibular Perception and Neural Correlates
Research Supervisor: D. M. Merfeld