Team:Michigan Software/Team

Michigan Software 2015

Michigan Biological Software Team

"The greatest team the University of Michigan has produced since the Fab Five"


I'm Josh Abramson, one of the team's co-founders and the current president. Hailing from West Bloomfield, I've made a living studying Biology, Mathematics, and Chemical Physics at the University of Michigan. Before leading the software team, I was on the Michigan lab team for 4 years as a member and 1 year as an advisor. Outside of iGEM, I enjoy tree climbing, playing pranks on my professors, and computer games.


Hi, my name is Hy Doan and I am from Grand Rapids, Michigan. I am junior studying Computer Science. In my free time, I enjoy playing/listening to jazz, exercising, and destroying friendships while playing Settlers of Catan (or any other board game). Along with school, I am in Groove Performance Group, an awesome percussion group, and I volunteer with Ready Set Start, teaching music workshops.


I am Graham, a senior at U of M, studying Molecular Biology and Computer Science. I enjoy fishing, hiking, and playing settlers of Catan. I wanted ProtoCat to be called ProtoDog but that wouldn't make any sense.


Hi, my name is Max Gittelman. I am a Junior studying Computer Science at U of M. I enjoy eating pizza at team meetings and allowing my younger twin brother to copy whatever I do. I fortunately am a dog person and highly recommended the name “Protodog” but the name was quickly struck down due to its non puniness. Also Graham steals jokes.


Hi, my name is Zachary Gittelman and I am a Junior studying Computer Science Engineering. I am from Miami, Florida and my interest in biotech has lead me to join the BioSoft team. Additionally, I am on the Michigan Autonomous Aerial Vehicles team and I enjoy learning about AI, running, skiing, and mimicking my twin Max. And remember, if you’re not the first cat, you’re the last cat.

Ali H

Hi, I'm Ali Hammoud. I'm a junior at the University of Michigan majoring in biochemistry and computer science. I spend a lot of my time studying for classes and working in a clinical research lab, but in my spare time I enjoy cooking and spending time with friends.

Ali T

Hello, I’m Ali Turfah. I am a sophomore and I plan to major in a form of Engineering. In my spare time, I enjoy designing as well as building costumes, playing video games, and studying languages, both spoken and computer. I have two cats, so I’m really excited about the ProtoCat designs.


I am Mary Weber, a junior from East Lansing, Michigan majoring in Informatics, with a concentration in life-science. I am interested in data analysis, particularly in regards to its role in improving the efficiency and accuracy of health systems. Outside of school, I love spending time outdoors and am a frequent visitor to the Arboretum and the Kerrytown Farmer’s Market.


Hi, I'm Katherine Williams. I am a sophomore in computer science from Hudsonville, MI. Besides the iGEM team, I am in a game development club called WolverineSoft and the Harry Potter Alliance at the University of Michigan. I enjoy playing piano and reading in my free time.


I am Campbell Yore, a patent agent registered with the United States Patent and Trademark Office and a third year law student at Santa Clara University School of Law. My technical background is in organic chemistry and bioelectronic materials. Biology is Technology, a book by Robert Karelson, introduced me to iGEM and the possibilities of synthetic biology and I've been hooked ever since. Collaborating with other groups, learning about biological circuit design, and advocating for student entrepreneurs are my favorite parts of participating in iGEM.



Dr. Marcus Ammerlaan is affiliated with the Department of Molecular, Cellular, and Developmental Biology at the University of Michigan. He is in charge of labs and graduate student instructors for the department’s introductory courses. Along with the introductory biology office staff, Dr. Ammerlaan handles course administration (grades, regrades, and make-ups). He teaches BIO 173 Introduction to Biology Lab. He received his Ph.D. from the University of Texas-Austin in 1994.
Attribution: General Project Advisor


Dr. Cavalcoli is an enthusiastic teacher and was a certified high school Biology and Chemistry teacher (Ames, IA), back in the late 1980’s before returning to graduate school for his Ph.D. Since 2002, he has been an adjunct assistant professor of medicinal chemistry, in the UM School of Pharmacy. He has taught lectures in Medchem 534, “Technology in Pharmacology”. Since 2007 he has presented lectures in “Database Design and SQL” for Bioinf 575 “Bioinformatics Programming Laboratory”. Dr. Cavalcoli is also involved in the organization of Great Lakes Bioinformatics Conference” GLBIO, an annual regional bioinformatics conferences sponsored by ISCB.
Attribution: Project and Fundraising Adviser


Chris Gates is the lead software engineer for the bioinformatics core and enjoys building quality software systems and exceptional software delivery teams. Since 1993, he has assumed many different roles in software development and has experience across many business domains including high-throughput genomics, pharmaceutical drug-discovery, publishing, electronic medical record systems, and social-science research. Prior to joining the core, he was the Director of Product Informatics at Compendia Bioscience (part of Life Technologies) where he managed the teams that created and maintained the Oncomine suite of bioinformatic data mining tools.
Attribution: Programming Consultant


Dr. Santiago Schnell is a Professor of Molecular & Integrative Physiology and Computational Medicine & Bioinformatics at the University of Michigan Medical School. He is also a University of Michigan Willliam K. Brehm Investigator at the Brehm Center for Diabetes Research. Currently, he is serving as the Director of the Educational Program Interfacing Computation and Engineering with Digestive and Metabolic Physiology, and Associate Director of the Systems and Integrative Biology Training Grant. He received his License in Biology from Universidad Simón Bolívar (Venezuela) and then his doctorate in Mathematical Biology from the University of Oxford (United Kingdom).
Attribution: Contact for department funding