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Current Members
Principal Investigator

Julia Kirshner
Assitant Professor
Department of Biological Sciences

Ph.D.  City of Hope Graduate School of Biological Sciences
B.S.    University of California, Davis (major: genetics; minor: psychology)

HANS235A, 765-494-2843
jkirshne at purdue dot edu
Research Associates

Brittany Metzger
Research Associate

B.S. Biological Sceinces, Purdue University

Brittany is investigating the role of soluble factors in the plasma of cancer patients responsible for the defect in osteoblast differentiation.

Brittany will join our team as a Research Assistant after graduation in May.
Postdoctoral Fellows

Dilini Gunasekera
Postdoctoral Fellow

Ph.D. Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health
B.S.   Wright State University

Dilini is investigating the role of systemic factors in inducing cell proliferation and drug-resistance in multiple myeloma.  She is also working on tracing the lineage of the multiple myeloma cancer stem cell.

Graduate Students

Mukti Parikh
Ph.D. student, PULSe

M.S. George Washington University
B.S. St. Xavier's College, Gujarat University

Mukti is investigating the role of cancer stem cells in breast cancer metastasis to the bone and the mechanisms of tissue tropism.

Mary Zheng
Ph.D. student, Biological Sciences

B.S. University of Maryland

Mary is interested in identifying natural products that can be used in prevention and treatment of breast cancer.  Her current work is focusing on evaluating the efficacy of a Periwinkle dervided compoundound to treat brain metastatses orginating from breast tumors.

Kayla Minser
Ph.D. student, Biological Sciences

B.S. New Mexico State University

Kayla is thinking of joining the lab to study the role for the acquisition of the neuronal-like phenotype during breast cancer metastasis

Esteban Orellana
Ph.D. student, PULSe

B.A. Pontificia Universidad Católica del Ecuador

Esteban will be studying the origin of the neuronal phenotype in metastatic breast cancer cells.

Undergraduate Students

Laura Rank
Biological Sciences

Laura is investigating the role of matrix metalloproteinases in breast cancer metastasis to bone.

Patrick Yang
Biological Sciences

Patrick is tracing the lineage of metastatic cells originating from primary tumors in the mammary gland.

Melissa O'Banion
Biological Sciences

Melissa is investigating the anti-cancer stem cell properties of eburnamonine and it's structural derivatives in multiple myeloma.

Britney Harris
Biological Sciences

Britney is determining the effect of eburnamonine and its structural analogs on the cancer stem cells in brain metastatic breast cancer.

Tara Mojtahed
Biological Sciences

Tara is working on identifying the phenotype of the multiple myeloma cancer stem cell.

Lab Assistants

Srdjan Kurbalija
Biological Sciences

is keeping us organized and out of trouble.


Eleanore (Ellie) Kirshner
2nd grade
Cumberland Elementary School

Future scientist in training

Current Information
Farah Alucozai

West Lafayette High
Senior (class of 2013)
West Lafayette High School
Caleb McDaniel

Undergraduate 06/12-12/12
Undergraduate (class of 2013)
Purdue University
Jamie Pierle

Undergraduate 02/12-12/12
Undergraduate (class of 2015)
Purdue University
John (Tyler) Williams

Undergraduate 06/10-05/12

Nicole Sadler
M.S. student
Biology Teacher
The Harker School
Frank Rutigliano
Medical student
Indiana Universty School of Medicine
Ellen Gunn
Research Associate
Graduate student
University of Notre Dame
Research Associate/lab manager
Jake Delabre

Undergraduate (class of 2012)
Purdue University
Meher Taleyarkhan Intern                  
Jefferson High School
Undergraduate (class of 2015)
Purdue University
Joel Cassler Undergraduate      
Research Associate 
General Biotechnology, Indianapolis, IN
Daniel Huynh

Pharmacy student
University of the Pacific, Stockton, CA
Ashely Lambrosa

Undergraduate (class of 2011)
Purdue University, West Lafayette, IN
Rebecca Bozarth              
Lab assistant
Undergraduate (class of 2012)
Purdue University, West Lafayette, IN
Michael Iannotti                

Graduate student
Baylor University, Houston, TX
Kabindra Kafle Summer intern         
Berea College
06/09-07/09 Research Assistant
University of Louisville
Jingfei Lu Undergraduate    

Undergraduate (class of 2012)
Purdue University, West Lafayette, IN 
Amanda Golemba Undergraduate   

01/09-05/09 Undergraduate (class of 2012)
Marquette University, Milwaukee, WI

Last modified: March 19, 2013