Jean- Philippe Julien
Jean- Philippe Julien
Canada Research Chair in Structural Immunology
Member, College of the Royal Society of Canada
CIFAR Azrieli Global Scholar, Molecular Architecture of Life
Senior Scientist, Program in Molecular Medicine, The Hospital for Sick Children Research Institute
Associate Professor, Departments of Biochemistry and Immunology, University of Toronto
Education: Lester B. Pearson United World College of the Pacific (IB Diploma, 2001); McGill University (B.Sc., Honour’s in Biochemistry with Minor in Social Studies of Medicine, 2005 as a Loran Scholar); University of Toronto (Ph.D. in Biochemistry in Dr. Emil Pai’s laboratory, 2010); The Scripps Research Institute (Post-Doctoral Fellowship in Dr. Ian Wilson’s laboratory, Department of Integrative Structural and Computational Biology, 2014).

Lab Interests : No moment more precious than solving a structure and seeing its three-dimensional architecture for the first time!

Hometown: Baie-Comeau, Quebec, Canada.

Other interests/hobbies: Playing hockey and basketball, skating, cycling, spending time outdoors, cinema.

Clare Burn Aschner
Clare Burn AschnerPostdoctoral Fellow
Education: PhD in Microbiology and Immunology, Albert Einstein College of Medicine (USA); BSc (Honours) in Microbiology and Immunology, University of Otago (NZ).

Lab Interests: I’m interested in effector functions of antibody responses to infectious diseases, especially with regard to how structure influences function, and how these functions can be engineered to improve antibody responses and develop better vaccines and therapeutics.

Hometown: Dunedin, New Zealand.

Other interests/hobbies: I love cooking, baking (and sharing!), travelling, hiking – especially places my dog is allowed, and spending time with friends and family.

Hong Cui
Hong CuiLaboratory Research Project Coordinator
Education: Master’s degree in Biochemistry & Molecular Biology at Capital Medical University, Beijing, China.

Lab Interests: I am interested in applying cell culture and protein purification techniques to help ongoing efforts towards the structural and biophysical characterization of B cell surface receptors with the ultimate goal to develop novel vaccine adjuvants, as well as improve blood cancer treatments.

Hometown: Beijing, China.

Other interests/hobbies: Aside from work, my hobbies are swimming, hiking and picnicking with family and friends.

Sophia Hailemariam
Sophia HailemariamMaster's Student
Education: B.Sc. Honours Biochemistry at McGill University.

Lab Interests: I am interested in characterizing antibody-antigen interactions using X-ray crystallography and other structural biology techniques to inform the design of more effective Malaria transmission blocking vaccines.

Hometown: Toronto, Ontario, Canada.

Other interests/hobbies: Outside of the lab, I enjoy reading, traveling, watching/ playing sports, being outside, and spending time with my friends and family.

Audrey Kassardjian
Audrey KassardjianOGS PhD Student
Education: B.Sc. (Hons) in Immunology, McGill University (2018).

Lab Interests: I am interested in using nanoparticles as a platform to engage and cross-link B cell receptors to instruct antibody longevity in the context of a malaria vaccine.

Hometown: Montreal, Quebec, Canada.

Other interests/hobbies: I love traveling – especially to destinations favorable to scuba diving! I also love partaking in science outreach activities within the Faculty of Medicine.

Iga Kucharska
Iga KucharskaRestracomp Postdoctoral Fellow
Education: PhD in Molecular Physiology and Biological Physics from University of Virginia.

Lab Interests: I am interested in applying cryoEM and X-ray crystallography approaches to obtain a better understanding of B-cell activation in response to pathogens.

Hometown: Swidnica, Poland.

Other interests/hobbies: I enjoy nature and travelling.

Elisa Lam
Elisa Lam Administrative Assistant
Education: York University.

Hometown: Hong Kong.

Other interests/hobbies: I enjoy travelling and seeing different places. I used to be a ballet dancer.

Brandon McLeod
Brandon McLeodRestracomp PhD Student
Education: B.Sc., Honours in Biochemistry, University of Alberta, 2016.

Lab interests: I am interested in using structural biology techniques to characterize antibody-antigen complexes, in order to guide the development of more efficacious vaccines. I want to further understand the structure-function relationship of antibodies, and how it can be engineered to better protect against infectious disease.

Hometown: Medicine Hat, Alberta.

Other interests/hobbies: Reading, running, and other activities such as hiking, rock climbing or playing sports.

Jocelyn Newton
Jocelyn NewtonPostdoctoral Fellow
Education: PhD in Pathology from Brown University and BA in Cognitive Sciences from the University of Virginia.

Lab Interests: I am interested in utilizing X-ray crystallography, cryo-EM, and other biophysical techniques to characterize the interactions between antibodies and Plasmodium antigens that have the potential to reduce malaria infectivity.

Hometown: Kingsport, Tennessee, United States.

Other interests/hobbies: I enjoy cooking, reading, doing yoga, and spending time outdoors.

Krithika Muthuraman
Krithika MuthuramanResearch Technician II
Education: Master of Science, Environmental Engineering, National University of Singapore, Singapore; Bachelor of Technology, Biotechnology, Anna University, India.

Lab Interests: I am interested in studying (1) the immunological, functional and structural basis of antigen-antibody interaction with respect to viral pathogens; (2) Using nanoparticle technology to develop efficacious vaccines and therapeutics against viral pathogens.

Hometown: India.

Other interests/hobbies: Reading, Cooking, Sketching, Painting.

Amy Nouanesengsy
Amy NouanesengsyPhD Student
Education: B.H.Sc. Honours Biomedical Discovery & Commercialization at McMaster University.

Lab Interests: I am interested in developing an oncology therapeutic using protein-based nanoparticles to better target cancerous cells at different maturation stages.

Hometown: St. Catharines, Ontario, Canada.

Other interests/hobbies: I love travelling and exploring the world, especially to see the wondrous sights that nature has to offer. I also enjoy reading, running, hiking, playing the piano and spending time with family and friends.

Katherine Prieto
Katherine PrietoLaboratory Research Project Coordinator
Education: M.Sc. in Biological Sciences-Microbiology, University of the Andes, Bogota, Colombia. B.Sc. in Microbiology and B.Sc. in Biology, University of the Andes, Bogota, Colombia.

Lab Interests: I want to support ongoing efforts towards the design and characterization of novel protein antigens with the ultimate goal to develop vaccine technologies against malaria using Molecular Biology, Protein Biochemistry and Biophysical techniques.

Hometown: Manizales, Colombia.

Other interests/hobbies: Hiking, ice skating, traveling and spending time with my family.

Edurne Rujas
Edurne RujasMarie Curie Global Postdoctoral Fellow
Education: PhD in Molecular Biology and Biomedicine at the Biofisika Institute, a joint center of the University of the Basque Country (UPV/EHU) and the Spanish Science Research Council (CSIC), 2016. Master degree in Biochemistry at Stockholm University, Sweden 2012. Bachelor degree in Biochemistry at the University of the Basque Country, Spain 2011.

Lab Interests: I am interested in understanding the molecular architecture and function of T/B cell co-receptors with the ultimate goal of applying this knowledge to the development of effective immunotherapies.

Hometown: Vitoria, Spain.

Other interests/hobbies: I like outdoor activities. Everything that has to do with getting in contact with nature and enjoying nice landscapes. Besides, I love traveling, discovering new places and hanging out with my family and friends.

Taylor Sicard
Taylor SicardPhD Student, Vanier Canada Graduate Scholar
Education: Graduate Student – M.Sc. Candidate, B.Sc. Biochemistry and Biotechnology, Wilfrid Laurier University.

Lab Interests: My research interests focus on the design of vaccine platforms using protein based nanoparticles, to better elicit an immune response to difficult pathogens. I am interested in determining how to improve currently available vaccine candidates and examining how interactions with B cell co-receptors can affect vaccine success.

Hometown: Grimsby, Ontario, Canada.

Other interests/hobbies: Outside of the lab, I love to read, be outdoors and spend time with family and friends.

Anthony Semesi
Anthony SemesiLaboratory Research Project Coordinator
Education: Biochemistry (Hons) B.Sc University of New Brunswick.

Lab Interests: Development of effective malaria vaccines and delivery platforms using self-assembling nanoparticles.

Hometown: Dar es salaam, Tanzania.

Other interests/hobbies: I enjoy running, soccer, nature, travelling and spending time with family and friends.

Elaine Thai
Elaine ThaiRestracomp PhD Student
Education: Graduate student, Department of Biochemistry at University of Toronto

Lab Interests: I am interested in characterizing the binding of antibodies to malarial antigens, and use this information for structure-guided immunogen design and antibody engineering.

Hometown: Richmond Hill, Ontario, Canada

Other Interests/Hobbies: I love swimming, watching movies, reading, writing, and spending time with family and friends. I am also a lifeguard and swim instructor.

Past Trainees

Dorota Borovsky
Dorota Borovsky2018 NSERC USRA Summer Research Student
Jacob Carson
Jacob Carson2016 SSuRe Undergraduate Summer Student
Steven Choi
Steven Choi2015-2016 Undergraduate Volunteer
Simran Dosanjh
Simran Dosanjh2019 Summer Undergraduate Intern
June Ereno
June Ereno2015-2018 CIHR Banting Postdoctoral Fellow
Zaky Hassan
Zaky Hassan2018-2019 BCH374/UROP Undergraduate Research Student
Sotaro Hirai
Sotaro Hirai2019-2020 BCB430 Undergraduate Research Student
Prasun Kundu
Prasun Kundu2017-2018 Postdoctoral Fellow
Sara Insausti Gonzalez
Sara Insausti Gonzalez2019 Visiting PhD student - University of the Basque Country
Benjamin Martinez
Benjamin Martinez2019 NSERC USRA Summer Research Student
Thandeka Moyo
Thandeka Moyo2016-2017 Visiting Ph.D. student, University of Cape Town
Clara Eléonore Pavillet
Clara Eléonore Pavillet2015-2016 BCH471 Undergraduate Research Student
Swetha Raman
Swetha Raman2016-2019 MITACS Postdoctoral Fellow
Stephen Scally
Stephen Scally2016-2019 CIHR Postdoctoral Fellow