TEAM

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Chair, Department of Microbiology
Jan T. Vilcek Professor of Molecular Pathogenesis
Alexandria Center for Life Sciences - West Tower
430 East 29th Street
Office Rm. 503, Lab Rm. 560
New York, NY 10016
Office: (212) 263-1080
Lab: (212) 263-1081
Email: Jeffrey.Weiser@nyulangone.org

JEFFREY N. WEISER, MD

Education: 

  • B.S. (Biological Sciences) Stanford University, 1979

  • M.D. Harvard University, 1984

  • Resident in Pediatrics, University of Washington, 1984-87

  • Research Fellow, Oxford University, 1987-89

  • Research Associate, Rockefeller University, 1989-92 

 

Faculty appointments: 

  • Professor of Microbiology and Pediatrics, University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine (through 12/31/14)

  • Jan T. Vilcek Professor of Molecular Pathogenesis, New York University School School of Medicine (2015 - )

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SURYA AGGARWAL

POSTDOCTORAL FELLOW

EDUCATION:

PhD in Biological Sciences, Carnegie Mellon University, 2020

I'M FROM: Punjab, India

SCIENTIFIC INTERESTS:

Understanding microbial and host factors that influence pneumococcal adaptation, colonization and transmission

FUN FACT:

I've lived on four continents.

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KRISTEN LOKKEN-TOYLI

POSTDOCTORAL FELLOW

EDUCATION:

PhD in Microbiology, UC Davis

I'M FROM: Minnesota

SCIENTIFIC INTERESTS:

Elucidation of host factors that drive susceptibility to upper respiratory tract infections in children; identification of age-related differences in mucosal defense mechanisms.

FUN FACT:

I had a fear of needles so I became a phlebotomist.

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MATTHEW MONTGOMERY

GRADUATE STUDENT

EDUCATION:

BS in Microbiology, University of Pittsburgh, 2015

I'M FROM: New Jersey

SCIENTIFIC INTERESTS:

Exploring the roles of Streptococcus pneumoniae produced neuraminidases with respect to upper respiratory tract colonization and transmission, as well as the host factors that respond to these enzymes' activities.

FUN FACT:

I once drove a forklift as an undergrad for some extra spending money.

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CINDY WU

RESEARCH ASSOCIATE

EDUCATION: Sc.B in Neuroscience, English; Brown University ‘22

I'M FROM:

Los Angeles, California

SCIENTIFIC INTERESTS:

1) neuroinflammation and its contribution to the mechanisms and pathologies underlying neurodegenerative diseases

2) relationship between pneumococcal capsule size and its characteristics of virulence, transmission success, and ability to evade clearance by the immune system

3) medical illustration and clinical presentations of diseases portrayed in art throughout history

FUN FACT:

I love to bake and am a certified hot yoga instructor!

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CHERN WEI 'GAVYN' BEE

GRADUATE STUDENT

EDUCATION:

BS in Biological Sciences, Cornell University ‘16

I'M FROM:  Penang, Malaysia

SCIENTIFIC INTERESTS:

Understanding how systemic innate immunity at different ages of an organism (i) is functionally primed and (ii) factors into microbial susceptibility.

FUN FACT:

Guess who’s a firstborn of his generation on both sides of the family? (Also, I love carrot juice with milk – it’s a popular drink from where I’m from! :P )

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SHEYA XIAO MA

GRADUATE STUDENT

EDUCATION:

ScM in Molecular Microbiology and Immunology, Johns Hopkins University ‘20

I'M FROM: Taiyuan, China

SCIENTIFIC INTERESTS:

Understanding microbial factors that drive competition between co-colonizing pneumococci

FUN FACT:

I am a totally harmless peace lover addicted to perfect crime fiction and movies.

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MILA ORTIGOZA

ASSISTANT PROFESSOR 

EDUCATION:

Doctor of Philosophy in Biological Sciences, Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai '11

Doctor of Medicine, Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai '13

I'M FROM:

Rio de Janeiro, Brazil

SCIENTIFIC INTERESTS:

Understanding the biology of transmission of influenza virus and other respiratory pathogens.

FUN FACT:

I am a mother of 2 beautiful girls, and am a citizen of 3 countries.

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JIAQI "LUCAS" ZHU

RESEARCH ASSOCIATE

EDUCATION:

BSc in Biology, Haverford College '22

I'M FROM:

Suzhou, China

SCIENTIFIC INTERESTS:

Investigating the role pneumococcal capsule plays in its colonization and transmission

FUN FACT:

I'm invested in a lot of things (I'm a classical guitarist-also a music minor as an undergrad, a soccer player, a not-so-bad cook, and a polyglot wannabe) but sort of a jack of all trades. 

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HANNES EICHNER

POSTDOCTORAL FELLOW

EDUCATION:

MSc in Biochemistry and Molecular Biology, University of Bremen 2015
PhD in Medical Sciences, Karolinska Institutet 2021

I'M FROM: Leipzig, Germany

SCIENTIFIC INTERESTS:

Communications between molecular players within a cell (prokaryotic or eukaryotic) or between different cells and regulation of said communication.

FUN FACT:

The country I was born in, does not exist anymore. I also like food. A lot.

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CATHERINA MOBINI

RESEARCH ASSOCIATE

EDUCATION:

BS in Neuroscience, University of Pittsburgh ‘20

I'M FROM: Queens, New York

SCIENTIFIC INTERESTS:

Understanding the mechanistic role of the upper respiratory tract microbiota in influenza virus transmission

FUN FACT:

I once won a hula hooping contest – last woman standing.

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JENNIFER PAGANO

EXECUTIVE ASSISTANT 

EDUCATION:

BA in Pscyhology, UCONN

I'M FROM:

Originally from CT, but I consider myself a New Yorker by now :)

FUN FACT:

I was in commercials as a child, so there's a chance you've seen my younger self in a Nickelodeon or random toy ad. (shout out my fellow millennials!).