Team:WashU StLouis/Team

Washington University - Penn State iGEM

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WashU and Penn State   iGEM 2015
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Charlotte Bourg Picture

Charlotte Bourg

Biochemistry and Spanish @ Washington University

Hi, I’m Charlotte Bourg and I’m a rising senior (eek) at Wash U. I’m double majoring in biochemistry and Spanish. I’m working with David in the Zhang lab, doing a lot of cloning with the Cyanothece nif cluster in E. coli. Outside of lab, I enjoy running, reading, cooking, watching movies, and exploring the St. Louis area.

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Mike Toomey

Biomedical Engineering @ Washington University

Hello! My name is Mike Toomey and I’m a rising sophomore majoring in Biomedical Engineering at Washington University in Saint Louis. This summer, I’m working in Dr. Tae Sook Moon’s lab in the Department of Energy, Environmental, and Chemical Engineering trying to assess the minimal genes necessary for expression of the enzyme nitrogenase from the Cyanothece sp. 51142 nif cluster. Other than iGEM, I’m Professional Outreach Chair for WashU’s Biomedical Engineering Society, I write for WashU’s student newspaper, and I serve as a Washington University Student Associate. I enjoy reading, watching movies, and running in my free time.

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Blake Actkinson

Biomedical Engineering @ Washington University

Hi, I’m Blake Actkinson, and I’m a rising junior from Houston, Texas. I study Biomedical Engineering in WashU’s School of Engineering and Applied Science. When I’m not in lab, I enjoy playing video games and listening to music. My interests largely revolve around engineering microorganisms to produce novel compounds.

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David Ayeke

Computer Engineering @ Washington University

Hi, I'm David Ayeke, and I'm a rising junior from St. Louis Missouri. Now you may be wondering what a computer scientist is doing among biologist, and the answer is very simple: making this website. I enjoy programming all sorts of stuff, and I usually spend my time reading computer science papers, and on personal projects. I love building novel systems, and it doesn't get more novel than biological machines.

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Jessica O'Callaghan

Chemical Engineering @ Penn State

Hello! My name is Jessica O’Callaghan and I’m currently a rising sophomore majoring in chemical engineering with a minor in spanish. I’m working under Dr. Maranas studying various strains of Escherichia coli to maximize ATP production and produce excess microbial energy. This is my first major-specific internship, and I look forward to learning more about the sub-disciplines of my field, specifically biochemistry. On campus, I am involved in several organizations, including SHC student council and Engineers Without Borders (EWB). In my free time, I enjoy playing lacrosse and reading.

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Laura Beebe

Biochemistry and Molecular Biology @ Penn State

Hi! My name is Laura Beebe, and I am a rising junior at Penn State majoring in BMB (Biochemistry and Molecular Biology) and minoring in math. I am working with metabolic models of the bacterial strains used to optimize nitrogen fixation in the labs at Wash U. Through a computational approach, I can identify interesting and quantitative features of the strains to help experimentation go as well as possible. Outside of iGEM, I work in the Center for Eukaryotic Gene Regulation on campus, and I enjoy running, caving, reading, and watching movies on Netflix.

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Caroline Focht

Chemistry and Biochemistry @ Washington University

Hello there! I'm Caroline, and I am a rising junior pursuing a major in chemistry with a biochemistry concentration and a minor in ancient studies. I was a member of the WashU_StLouis 2014 iGEM team, and this summer, I am working as the 2015 team’s undergraduate advisor while continuing my own research on light-regulated systems. Whenever I am not in the lab, I like to bake cookies, go out with friends, and binge watch shows on Netflix.


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Cheryl Immethun

PhD candidate @ Washington University

Hi, I’m Cheryl, a PhD candidate in the Moon Research Group. I am developing synthetic biology tools for cyanobacteria, mainly utilizing transcriptional regulation. Through their millions of years of evolution, cyanobacteria have developed amazing capabilities that I would like to employ for societal needs. By unlocking the secrets of nitrogen fixation in a photosynthetic cell, we could one day transform agriculture to keep up with the demands of our ever expanding population. My passions are solving puzzles (in and out of the lab,) as well as exciting students about the mysteries of science and helping them develop the tools to become society’s problem solvers.

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Thomas Mueller

Graduate Student @ Penn State

Hello, my name is Tom Mueller, I am a graduate student in chemical engineering working for Dr. Costas D. Maranas at Penn State University. I work in computational modeling of both metabolic and regulatory networks, focusing predominantly on cyanobacteria. I spend much of my free time volunteering for the Penn State Dance Marathon.

Graduate Student Mentors

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Andrea Balassy

Graduate Student @ Washington University

Zhang Lab

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Carlos Barba

Visiting Scholar @ Washington University

Zhang Lab

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Yi Xiao

Postdoc @ Washington University

Zhang Lab

Ray Bourg Picture

Ray Henson

Graduate Student @ Washington University

Moon Lab

Ryan Bourg Picture

Young Je Lee

Graduate Student @ Washington University

Moon Lab


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