Ellis Lab group photo - October 2017

Ellis Lab 2017.


Our lab has been fortunate in attracting and retaining highly qualified individuals from around the world with diverse research backgrounds.


The success of our lab, in large part, can be attributed to the hard work of our past and present lab members!

Dr. James Ellis

Dr. James Ellis

Senior Scientist

Senior Scientist | SickKids Research Institute

Professor | Department of Molecular Genetics

Research Integrity Advisor (2013-2023)| SickKids Research Institute

Victoria in beautiful British Columbia

Previously: James completed his B.Sc. at McGill University in Montreal and his PhD at the University of Toronto with Dr. Alan Bernstein developing retrovirus vectors for gene targeting. His postdoctoral fellowship, studying the beta-globin locus control region, was mentored by Dr. Frank Grosveld in London UK.

Currently: He established his research team at SickKids in 1994 with a focus on blood gene therapy for sickle cell anaemia that evolved into research on retrovirus silencing and using iPS cells to model disease.

In addition: Always keen on wine tasting and mountain biking.


Current CV

Current Members

The Ellis Lab is expanding in 2024 again after lab members completed their projects over the pandemic. Since 2020 we have graduated 5 MSc and 3 PhD students, and 2 Research Associates and 1 Technician moved to new opportunities in the US (see alumni page). New lab members coming soon!

Peter Pasceri - Lab Manager

Peter Pasceri

Lab Manager

Lab Manager / Research Technician


Previously: Peter Pasceri got his B.Sc. in Zoology from the University of Toronto.

Currently: He is the backbone of our lab and can usually be overheard complaining about how he hates to run.

In addition: Peter still finds time for cycling and making wine. He is also a master craftsman of gag gifts and homemade lab equipment.

Scientific contributions
Wei Wei - Lab Technician

Wei Wei

Lab Technician

Lab Technician


Previously: Wei Wei obtained her B.Sc. at McMaster University and M.Sc. at the University of Toronto. Her Master’s thesis involved the identification of cellular components that interact with the Shiga-like Toxin 1 A1 Chain in order to discover potential therapeutic targets that block SLT-1 action inside cells.

Currently: Her main goal in the Ellis lab is to assist the trainees in establishing a differentiation protocol for the neuronal production platform in order to conduct functional studies for various neurological disorders.

In addition: Outside of work, she enjoys expanding her social horizons and meeting new friends. She takes great pleasure in trying different types of food from various cultures.

Scientific contributions
Guoliang Meng - Lab Technician

Guoliang Meng

Lab Technician

Lab Technician


From: China / Calgary, Alberta

Previously: Guoliang received his M.Sc and Ph.D. in Genetics and Cell Biology from Peking University, China. Since 1990, he began to work on developing and characterizing mouse ESC lines, RNA interference in different ES cell lines, and further expanded his work to include rabbit, bovine, porcine and human ES cell line derivations. He joined the Rancourt lab (the University of Calgary) in 2003 first as a postdoctoral fellow, then a research associate. His main research focused on derivation, characterization and differentiation PSCs; large-scale expansion of PSCs in stirred bioreactors; xeno-free culture and cryopreservation of hPSCs; CRISPR/Cas9 editing in hPSCs; cardiomyocyte differentiation from hPSCs; derivation/conversion of naïve hPSCs and much more.

Currently: He is working as a lab technician in the Ellis lab to maintain human patient iPSC lines and edit them with CRISPRs, as well as differentiate them into cardiomyocytes.

In addition: In his spare time, he enjoys collecting coins across the world and playing games with his little son.

Scientific contributions
Marta Guevara-Ferrer - Research Fellow

Marta Guevara-Ferrer

Research Fellow

Research Fellow


From: Barcelona (Spain)

Previously: Marta obtained her Ph.D. from Manchester Metropolitan University (UK) with Prof. Tristan McKay. She studied the cellular and molecular biology of MFSD8 mutations associated with the variant late-infantile CLN7 form of Batten disease. During her Ph.D. she used CLN7 patient-derived iPSCs to understand the pathobiology of this disease.

Currently: She is working as a Research Fellow in the Ellis lab to study the morphology and activity of iPSC-derived neurons in Rett syndrome using extracellular vesicles from astrocytes.

In addition: In her free time, Marta enjoys swimming, climbing, and hiking.

Scientific contributions
Gwyneth Bolter - Research Student (Co-op)

Gwyneth Bolter

Research Student (Co-op)

Research Student (Co-op)


From: Toronto

Previously: During her last co-op term, Gwyneth worked at SickKids in Dr. Ryan Yuen’s lab studying genomic variants related to neurodevelopmental diseases. More recently, she completed her honours thesis in Dr. Bhagwati Gupta’s lab at McMaster studying the protein Axin in the context of neurodegeneration.

Currently: Gwyneth is working in the Ellis lab as a co-op student while completing her B.Sc. in Molecular Biology and Genetics at McMaster University. She is currently helping out with various projects around the lab and assisting in data analysis.

In addition: Gwyneth enjoys biking and travelling to new places.