Our Lab 2017-08-31T16:48:21+00:00

Principle Investigators and Professors

Dr. Pia Vogel

Dr. Pia Vogel received her Ph.D. in Biochemistry from the University of Kaiserslautern, DE. Dr. Vogel also received her Habilitation in Biochemistry Investigation from the University of Kaiserslautern for her work regarding the structure and function of ATP-dependent proteins and enzymes. Her research interests include the structure, molecular dynamics, and protein-protein interactions of Nucleotide Binding Proteins. Specifically, she focuses on F1Fo-ATP-synthase, Multidrug Resistance Proteins such as P-glycoprotein, and the Ryanodine Receptor.

Dr. John Wise

Dr. John Wise received his Ph.D. in Biochemistry from the University of Rochester in Rochester, New York. His research interests include Multidrug Resistance Proteins, Rotary Motors of ATP Synthase, Combinatorial Biology and the Evolution of DNA-binding Proteins, Toxins and Toxic Genes for Selection Systems, and the In Silico Simulation and Modeling of Protein and Small Molecule Structures.

Graduate Students

Gang (Mike) Chen

I am Mike, the oldest graduate student in Biology at SMU. I received my MS in Biochemistry and Molecular Biology from Harbin Institute of Technology in China, and another MS in Biomedical Engineering from Louisiana Tech University. After a short research stay at the University of Connecticut, I joined the SMU Biochemistry Ph.D. program in 2014, and have been working with Dr. Vogel and Dr. Wise since then. My research has been focused on mechanistic studies of inhibitors of membrane proteins that cause multidrug resistances in cancers and other diseases. A variety of tools are being used in this research, including biochemical and biophysical assays on purified proteins, as well as cell based assays on multidrug resistance cancer cell lines. My 4-year-old son, Aaron, is also dedicated to research in Biology.

Amila Nannayakkara

Amila is a Graduate Student in the PhD program. He received his Bsc. in Molecular Biology and Biochemistry from the University of Colombo, in Sri Lanka. His research interests involve studying drug efflux activity of ATP-binding cassette (ABC) transporters in multidrug-resistant (MDR) cancer cell lines, and screening for inhibitors of ABC transporters using MDR cancer cell lines.

Maisa Oliveira

I have always known that Science would be the path to follow. I received my Bsc. in Biological Sciences from Mackenzie Presbyterian University, in Sao Paolo, Brazil. As an undergraduate I was awarded twice with a research scholarship, first while working at the Butantan Institute in Sao Paolo, and later at the Molecular Biology and Parasitology Laboratory at the University of Sao Paolo. After that, life lead me to education, and I was the happiest Biology and Science teacher that you could find in my town. How amazing it was, to teach so many incredible students and help them love Science as much as I do. I decided to start a PhD program to combine my two passions: research and teaching. I joined the Vogel-Wise lab in the Spring of 2015. Knowing the implications of ABC transporters in the resistance of cancer cells to chemotherapy, my research has focused on establishing a high expression system for the human P-glycoprotein and Breast Cancer Resistance Protein (BCRP) for later biochemical evaluation of our in silico identified potential P-gp and BCRP inhibitors.

Lauren Ammerman

I joined the Vogel-Wise Lab in Fall of 2016. After completing the University Scholars program at Baylor University in Waco, Texas, I received my degree with concentrations in Biochemistry and International Studies (grüß Gott). I am originally from Houston, TX. I was inspired to study science by Dr. McCoy and Mr. Spock in the original Star Trek series. My research involves the computational side of our lab’s research, and I spend much of my time communing with the ManeFrame II supercomputer here at SMU. I use in silico techniques such as molecular docking to explore and model how molecules might interact with multidrug resistance proteins in vitro.

Undergraduates

Kasi Holcomb-Webb

Jett Ballou-Crawford

Dakota

Roxana

Ashley Mai

Previous Graduates

Dr. Courtney Follit

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Dr. James McCormick

Collette LaVigne, M.S.

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