Student Profiles

PhD Students

Lanazha Belfield
Sixth Year PhD Candidate, 2022-2023
Year Matriculated: 2017
lbelfiel@wakehealth.edu
Education: Bachelor’s of Science Biology Major Physics Minor, Winston-Salem State University, 2017
Research Mentor: D. Clark Files, MD (Pulmonary)
Research Interests: Acute Respiratory Distress Syndrome; Muscular Atrophy; Muscle Proteins

Steven Bronson, DVM
Fourth Year PhD Candidate, 2022-2023
Year Matriculated: 2021
sbronson@wakehealth.edu
Education: DVM, Purdui University, 2019
BS, Genetics and Developmental Biology, Pennsylvania State University, 2011
Research Mentor: David Soto-Pantoja, PhD (Surgery Sciences (Hypertension)
Research Interests: Cancer Biology

Justin Campbell
Second Year PhD Candidate, 2022-2023
Year Matriculated: 2021
jdcampbe@wakehealth.edu
Education: Bachelor of Science Biology; Minor in Pre-Health;
Winston-Salem State University
Associate in Applied Science; Major in Biotechnology;
Associate in Applied Science; Major in Nanotechnology
Forsyth Technical Community College
Research Mentor: Thomas Shupe, PhD (Cancer Biology)
Research Interests: Cell Biology; Virology; Tissue Engineering; Regenerative Medicine

Samuel Carmichael II, MD
Third Year PhD Student, 2022-2023
Year Matriculated: 2022
scarmich@wakehealth.edu
Education: MD, University of Kentucky College of Medicine, 2018
Research Mentor: Anthony Atala, MD (WFIRM)
Research Interests: Shock Resuscitation, Intra-Abdominal Adhesions

Tameka Dean, DO, MS
Third Year PhD Student, 2022-2023
Year Matriculated: 2021
tamdean@wakehealth.edu
Education: Philadelphia College of Osteopathic Medicine
Doctorate of Osteopathic Medicine, 2021
MS, Biomedical Science, 2021
Research Mentor: Xue Ma, PhD (Orthopaedics)
Research Interests: Ischemia-reperfusion injury, skeletal muscle physiology

Hope Didier
Second Year PhD Student, 2022-2023
Year Matriculated: 2021
hdidier@wakehealth.edu
Education: 
Research Mentor: Lance Miller, PhD: Cancer Biology
Research Interests:

Aya Abdel Raouf El-Taibany, MD
Third Year PhD Student, 2022-2023
Year Matriculated: 2021
aeltaiba@wakehealth.edu
Education: MD, School of Medicine, Alexandria University, 2008
Internship, School of Medicine, Alexandria University, 2010
MS, Medical Genetics, Alexandria University, 2016
Research Mentor: Michael Seeds, Ph.D. (WFIRM) and Anthony Atala, MD (WFIRM)
Research Interests: Neurodegenerative, neuroimmunological, Blood brain barrier, molecular genetics, drug discovery and translational Research

Lindsey Farris
Fourth Year PhD Student, 2022-2023
Year Matriculated: 2019
lfarris@wakehealth.edu
Education: BS, Biology & Chemistry, Western Carolina University, 2019
Research Mentor: Leslie Poole, Ph.D. (Biochemistry)
Research Interests: Cancer therapeutics & translational medicine

Alexandria Harrison
Eighth Year PhD Candidate, 2022-2023
Year Matriculated: 2015 (transferred 2017)
alexharr@wakehealth.edu
Education: BS, Biology, Winston-Salem State University, 2014
Research Mentor: Donald McClain, MD, PhD (Endocrinology & Metabolism)
Research Interests: diabetes, obesity, metabolism, dietary iron, hypoxia

Brendan Johnson, DVM
Fourth Year PhD Student, 2022-2023
Year Matriculated: 2020
bjjohnso@wakehealth.edu
Education: DVM, University of Missouri, 2018
Research Mentor: Mark Cline, DVM, PhD (Pathology, Comparative Medicine)
Research Interests: Comparative Medicine, Cancer Biology, Radiation Oncology, Cognition and Memory

Sudarshan Krishnamurthy
Pending MD/PhD dual degree program, 2022
Year Matriculated: 2022
sukrishn@wakehealth.edu
Education: BS Biomedical Sciences, University of South Florida, 2019
Research Mentor: Dr. Miranda Orr and Dr. Suzanne Craft (Gerontology)
Research Interests: Alzheimer’s disease; insulin signaling; cellular senescence

Caroline Kuczynski
Foruth Year PhD Student, 2022-2023
Year Matriculated: 2019
ckuczyns@wakehealth.edu
Education: BS, Biophysics with Honors, Wake Forest University, 2018
Research Mentor: Graça Almeida-Porada, MD, PhD (WFIRM)
Research Interests: Genetic hematologic disorders (particularly sickle cell anemia and other hemoglobinopathies), adeno-associated virus (AAV)-based gene therapy, prenatal gene therapy, and molecular dynamics (MD) simulations.

Hannah Lamond
Second Year PhD Student, 2022-2023
Year Matriculated: 2021
hlamond@wakehealth.edu
Education: DVM, University of Missouri, 2017
MS in Biomedical Sciences, University of Missouri, 2017
Residency in Anatomic Pathology, University of Minnesota, 2020
Research Mentor: Neveen Said, MD, PhD (Cancer Biology)
Research Interests: Cancer Biology, pathophysiology

Kendell Langsten, DVM
Fourth Year PhD Student, 2022-2023
Year Matriculated: 2019
klangste@wakehealth.edu
Education: DVM, University of Missouri, 2017
MS in Biomedical Sciences, University of Missouri, 2017
Residency in Anatomic Pathology, University of Minnesota, 2020
Research Mentor: Bethany Kerr, Ph.D. (Cancer Biology)
Research Interests: Cancer Biology; Pathophysiology

Daniel Lara, MD
Seventh Year PhD Candidate, 2022-2023
Year Matriculated: 2017
dlara@wakehealth.edu
Education: BS, University of Notre Dame, 2011
MD, Creighton University School of Medicine, 2016
Research mentor: Thomas Smith, PhD (Orthopaedic Surgery)
Research Interests: Neuromuscular Junction/Peripheral Nerve Trauma and Regeneration

T. David Luo, MD
Eighth Year PhD Candidate, 2022-2023
Year Matriculated: 2015
tluo@wakehealth.edu
Education: B.S. Purdue University, 2009
M.D. Indiana University School of Medicine, 2014
Research Mentor: Jeffrey Willey, PhD (Radiation Oncology)
Research Interests: Peripheral nerve injury and repair

Nequesha Mohamed, MD
Fourth Year PhD Student, 2022-2023
Year Matriculated: 2020
nmohamed@wakehealth.edu
Education: MD, University of Medicine and Health Sciences, St. Kitts, 2016
BS, Universityof Toronto, 2011
Research Mentor: Kerry Danelson, PhD (Orthopaedics)
Research Interests: Arthritis, Diabetes, Joint Replacement, Healthcare Disparity

Sumaiya Nazli
Sixth Year PhD Student, 2022-2023
Year Matriculated: 2017
snazli@wakehealth.edu
Education: Bachelors of Science Biology Major, Math Minor,
Salem College, 2015
Research Mentor: Michael Olivier, PhD (Molecular Medicine)
Research Interests: Plasma Proteomics, Mass Spectrometry, Plasma Biomarkers for Biological Disease

Emma Parsons
Third Year PhD Student, 2022-2023
Year Matriculated: 2020
ecparson@wakehealth.edu
Education: B.A. Biology and Sociology, minor in Chemistry, Wake Forest University, 2018
Research Mentor: Anthony Atala, MD and Johanna Bolander, PhD
Research Interests: immunology, translational science, osteoarthritis, immunomodulatory cell-based treatment, cellular and molecular mechanisms

Chirayu Patel
Third Year PhD Student, 2022-2023
Year Matriculated: 2020
cpatel@wakehealth.edu
Education: M.S. Cancer Biology, Wake Forest, 2019
B.S. Cell and Molecular Biology, Appalachian State, 2014
Research Mentor: Jeff Willey, PhD (Radiology Biology)
Research Interests: Simulation of space flight radiation environment. Study effects on skeletal health from space flight microgravity and radiation. Development of novel radio-protectors to prevent space flight induced damage to joint damage.

Patrick Ralph
Second Year MD/PhD dual degree student, 2022-2023
Year Matriculated: MD 2019, PhD 2021
pralph@wakehealth.edu
Education: B.S. Biology, William Peace University
Research Mentor: Sang Jin Lee, PhD (WFIRM)
Research Interests: Tissue engineering, model development, neurobiology, regenerative medicine, neurodegeneration, behavioral neurology, and neuropsychiatry

Mackenzie Roberts
Third Year PhD Student, 2022-2023
Year Matriculated: 2020
mackrobe@wakehealth.edu
Education: B.S. Neuroscience, Duke University, 2019
Research Mentor: Leah Solberg Woods, PhD (Molecular Medicine
Research Interests: Genetics, Translational Science, Obesity, Diabetes

Alistaire Ruggiero
Fifth Year PhD Candidate, 2022-2023
Year Matriculated: 2018
adruggie@wakehealth.edu
Education: BA in Biological Anthropology from Smith College
Research Mentor: Kylie Kavanagh, PhD (Pathology-Comparative Medicine)
Research Interests: Metabolism and ageing, obesity phenotypes, adipose

William Shane Sills, DVM
Fifth Year PhD Candidate, 2022-2023
Year Matriculated: 2019
wsills@wakehealth.edu
Education: BS, Zoology, NC State University; DVM, NC State University
Residency, Anatomic Pathology, Cornell University
Research Mentor: Mark Cline, DVM, PhD, DACVP (Pathology-Comparative Medicine)
Research Interests: Immunology and pathology; Immune response to tumors and cancer immunotherapy; Cancer genetics and genomics; Long-term effects of radiation

Maggie Smith
Third Year PhD Student, 2022-2023
Year Matriculated: 2020
margsmit@wakehealth.edu
Education: B.S. Biology, Appalachian State University, 2018
Research Mentor: Fei Xing, PhD (Cancer Biology)
Research Interests: Immune checkpoint inhibitors; Hyperprogression; Lung Cancer

Alexandria Szalanczy
Fifth Year PhD Candidate, 2022-2023
Year Matriculated: 2018
aszalanc@wakehealth.edu
Education: Centre College, B.S. Biochemistry & Molecular Biology
Research Mentor: Leah Solberg Woods, PhD (Molecular Medicine)
Research Interests: How our genetics can impact our health and behavior.

Yuezhu Wang
Second year PhD Candidate, 2022-2023
Year Matriculated: 2021
Education: Master of Science in Genomic and Bioinformatics, the Chinese University of Hong Kong, 2019;
Bachelor of Medicine, Soochow University, 2018
Research Mentor: Fei Xing, PhD (Cancer Biology)
Research Interests: Tumor Immunotherapy, Cancer genomics, Genetic mutation