Clinical and Experimental Therapeutics Program

PhD Students

 

Kabir Ahluwalia


kahluwal@usc.edu |

Undergraduate Education: Bachelor of Science, Biochemistry, Georgia Institute of Technology

Research Interests: Anti-inflammatory, Cell Biology, Cellular Stress, Drug Delivery, Gene Expression, Molecular Biology, Membrane Transport, Protein Chemistry, Regulatory Science, Therapeutic Targets

Research Project or Thesis Title:  Molecular and in vivo dissection as to the therapeutic effects of polarized, retinal pigment epithelium soluble factors

Faculty Advisor: Dr. Stan Louie

Year of Study:  4th

Awards:  USC Ginsburg Institute for Biomedical Therapeutics Research Student Award (Jul 2019)

Leadership:  USC School of Pharmacy Peer Mentor Program (PMP) (2019-2020); Secretary, AAPS – USC Student Chapter (2018-2019)

 

Alzahra Al Omran


aalomran@usc.edu

Undergraduate Education: Bachelor of Science, Pharm B, King Saud University

Graduate Education:  Master of Science, Pharmacology and Toxicology, University of Toledo

Research Interests: Alcohol Addiction, Alzheimer’s Disease, Neurodegeneration, Mental Health

Research Project or Thesis Title:  Investigating the effect of dihydromyricetin on anxiety and cognitive impairment related phenotypes

Faculty Advisor: Dr. Daryl Davies

Year of Study:  3rd

 

Atham Ali


athamali@usc.edu

Undergraduate Education:  Bachelor of Science, Public Health Science, University of California, Irvine

Research Interests: Bacterial Virulence, Cancer, Drug Delivery, Drug Design, Drug Development, Drug Discovery, Nanomedicine, Pharmacology

 

Faculty Advisors: Drs.  Houda Alachkar and Andrew MacKay

Year of Study:  2nd

 

John Beckford


jbeckfor@usc.edu

Undergraduate Education: Bachelor of Science, Microbiology, University of Massachusetts, Amherst

Research Interests: Cancer, Gene Expression, Host Immune Response, Pharmacogenomics

Research Project or Thesis Title:  The effects of DNA hypomethylating agents on t-cells

Faculty Advisor: Dr. Houda Alachkar

Year of Study:  4th

 

Haoyi Cui


athamali@usc.edu

Undergraduate Education:  Bachelor of Science, Public Health Science, University of California, Irvine

Research Interests: Bacterial Virulence, Cancer, Drug Delivery, Drug Design, Drug Development, Drug Discovery, Nanomedicine, Pharmacology

Faculty Advisors: Drs.  Houda Alachkar and Andrew MacKay

  Year of Study:  2nd

 

Tiange Dong


tiangedo@usc.edu

Undergraduate Education: Bachelor of Science, Biochemistry Honors/Cell, Molecular & Developmental Biology (Double Major), Purdue University

Research Interests: Anti-inflammatory, Cancer, Cell Biology, Drug Development

Research Project or Thesis Title:  Mechanistic investigation of NAP1051 in treating colorectal cancer

Faculty Advisor: Dr. Stan Louie

Year of Study:  4th

 

 

Mansour Dughbaj


dughbaj@usc.edu

Undergraduate Education: Bachelor of Science, Biological Science, California State University, Fullerton

Research Interests: Cystic Fibrosis, Drug Design, Drug Development, Host Immune Response, Peptide Chemistry, Pharmacology, Therapeutic Development

Research Project or Thesis Title:  Evaluation of engineered cyclotide-based antimicrobial peptides as therapeutic leads for cystic fibrosis

Faculty Advisor: Dr. Paul Beringer

Year of Study:  3rd

Awards:  T90 Research Scholar Trainee Fellowship (2019-2020); Webb Foundation Grant (2018); USC School of Pharmacy Dean’s Fellowship (2017-2019); USC School of Pharmacy Culty Diversity Award (2017-2018)

Leadership:  Treasurer, AAPS – USC Student Chapter (Oct 2019 – Present)

 

Brandon Ebright


bebright@usc.edu

Undergraduate Education: Bachelor of Science, Chemistry, Rice University

Research Interests: Anti-inflammatory, Biochemistry, Cancer, Chemical Biology, Drug Delivery, Drug Design, Drug Development, Drug Discovery, Neurodegeneration, Peptide Chemistry, PK/PD (pharmacokinetic/pharmacodynamic), Regulatory Science

Faculty Advisor: Dr. Stan Louie

 Year of Study:  2nd

Awards:  USC School of Pharmacy Culty Diversity Award (2019-2020)

Leadership:  Co-Communications Chair, American Association for Pharmaceutical Scientist (AAPS) – USC Student Chapter (2019-2020)

 

 

Lucas Gutierrez


lkgutier@usc.edu

Undergraduate Education: Bachelor of Science, Biological Sciences, University of California, Irvine

Graduate Education:  Master of Science, Biological Sciences, California State University, Los Angeles

Research Interests: Cancer, Gene Expression, Host Immune Response, Pharmacogenomics, Regulatory Science

Research Project or Thesis Title:  Investigating the effect of targeted therapy against FLT3 on t cell function and repertoire in patients with FLT3-ITD positive acute myeloid leukemia

Faculty Advisor: Dr. Houda Alachkar

Year of Study:  4th

Awards:  American Society of Hematology Minority Graduate Student Abstract Achievement Award (2017)

 

 

Isis Janilkarn-Urena


janilkar@usc.edu

Undergraduate Education: Bachelor of Science, Biology, California State Polytechnic University

Graduate Education:  Master of Science, Biological Sciences, California State Polytechnic University

Research Interests: Anti-inflammatory, Antimicrobial Resistance, Bacterial Virulence, Cell Biology, Cellular Stress, Drug Delivery, Drug Design, Drug Development, Drug Discovery, Fungi, Gene Expression, Global Health, Host Immune Response, Molecular Biology, Natural Products, Pharmacology, Pharmacogenomics, Plant Medicine, Regulatory Science, Therapeutic Development, Toxicology

Faculty Advisor: Dr. Daryl Davies

Year of Study:  2nd

 

 

Zeyang “Rita” Li


zeyangli@usc.edu

Undergraduate Education: Bachelor of Science, Biological Science, University of Southern California

Research Interests: Anti-inflammatory, Cell Biology, Cellular Stress, Toxicology

Research Project or Thesis Title:  Comparing the oxidative and inflammatory damage by ECE and CSE on HCE-2 and ARPE-19 cells

Faculty Advisor: Dr. Stan Louie

Year of Study:  3rd

Leadership:  Vice President, AAPS – USC Student Chapter (2019)

 

Tracey Lin


Traceyl@usc.edu

Undergraduate Education: Bachelor of Science, Molecular, Cell and Developmental Biology, University of California, Santa Cruz

Research Interests: Cancer, Cellular Stress, Molecular Biology, PK/PD (pharmacokinetic/pharmacodynamic), Therapeutic Targets

Research Project or Thesis Title:  Application of C125 to target Notch1 in cancer stem cells population of triple negative breast cancer

Faculty Advisor: Dr. Stan Louie

Year of Study:  4th

 

Angela Lu


alu52904@usc.edu

Undergraduate Education: Bachelor of Arts, Biological Sciences, Rutgers University

Graduate Education: Master of Science, Biomedical Sciences, Rutgers University

Research Interests: Antimicrobial Resistance, Bacterial Virulence, Host Immune Response, Therapeutic Targets

Faculty Advisors: Drs. Stan Louie and Serghei Mangul

Year of Study:  2nd

 

 

Andrew Mead


amead@usc.edu

Undergraduate Education: Bachelor of Arts, Molecular Cell Biology: Immunology, University of California, Berkeley

Research Interests: Anti-inflammatory, Cancer, Drug Delivery, Drug Design, Drug Development, Drug Discovery, Host Immune Response, Peptide Chemistry, Therapeutic Development, Therapeutic Targets

Research Project or Thesis Title:  Small molecule therapy for mitigation of progressive retinitis pigmentosa/oral cyclotide-based therapeutics as a novel drug-delivery modality

Faculty Advisor: Dr. Stan Louie

Year of Study:  3rd

Awards:  USC School of Pharmacy Dean’s Fellowship Award (2017-2019)

 

A young “Jenny” Park


ayoungpa@usc.edu

Undergraduate Education: Bachelor of Science, Biochemistry and Molecular Biology (Double Major), Chapman University

Graduate Education: Master of Science, Molecular Pharmacology and Toxicology, University of Southern California

Research Interests: Anti-inflammatory, Computer Modeling, Cystic Fibrosis, PK/PD (pharmacokinetic/pharmacodynamic)

Research Project or Thesis Title:  Pharmacokinetic-pharmacodyanmics of vitamin D3 in adults with cystic fibrosis

Faculty Advisor: Dr. Paul Beringer

Year of Study:  2nd

Awards:  AFPE Pre-Doctoral Research Fellowship in Pharmaceutical Sciences (Apr 2019)

 

Kerui Peng


keruipen@usc.edu

Graduate Education: Doctor of Pharmacy, Experimental and Clinical Pharmacology Research Emphasis, University of Minnesota – Twin Cities

Research Interests: Computational Science, Computer Modeling, Data Reproducibility, PK/PD (pharmacokinetic/pharmacodynamic), Pharmacogenomics, Regulatory Science

Faculty Advisors: Drs. Serghei Mangul and Houda Alachkar

Year of Study:  2nd

 

Rachel Reyes


reyesrac@usc.edu

Undergraduate Education: Bachelor of Arts, Psychology, University of California, Irvine

Research Interests: Alcohol Addiction, Anti-inflammatory, Host Immune Response, Neurodegeneration, Microbiome

Research Project or Thesis Title:  Manipulation of the gut microbiome to influence alcohol consumption behavior and related immune activity

Faculty Advisor: Dr. Daryl Davies

Year of Study:  5th

Awards:  Best Poster at Cedars-Sinai Biomedical Sciences Graduate Student Symposium (Nov 2017)

 

Joshua Silva


silvajos@usc.edu

Undergraduate Education: Bachelor of Science, Biological Science, California State University, Fullerton

Graduate Education: Master of Science, Biological Science, California State University, Los Angeles

Research Interests: Aging, Alcohol Addiction, Anti-inflammatory, Cell Biology, Cellular Stress, Diabetes, Drug Delivery, Drug Development, Drug Discovery, Molecular Biology, Membrane Transport, Natural Products, Pharmacology, Physiology, Regulatory Science, Therapeutic Devel

Research Project or Thesis Title:  Dihydromyricetin (DHM) reduces alcohol-induced liver injury

Faculty Advisor: Dr. Daryl Davies

Year of Study:  3rd

Awards:  AFPE Pre-Doctoral Fellowship (Apr 2019)

Leadership:  USC STAR (Science, Technology and Research) Program Mentor (May 2019 – May/Jun 2020)

 

 

Alicia “Allie” Warnecke


warnecke@usc.edu

Undergraduate Education: Bachelor of Science, Biology, Neuroscience (Double Major), Syracuse University

Research Interests: Aging, Neurodegeneration, Parkinson’s Disease, Pharmacology, Dopamine/ Neurotransmission

Research Project or Thesis Title:  The evaluation of P2X4R positive modulation on dopamine and dopamine metabolism

Faculty Advisor: Dr. Daryl Davies

Year of Study:  4th

Awards:  AFPE Pre-Doctoral Fellowship (2018-2019)

 

Eugene Zhou


eugenezh@usc.edu

Undergraduate Education: Bachelor of Arts, Integrative Biology, University of California, Berkeley

Graduate Education:  Master of Science, Management of Drug Development, University of Southern California

Research Interests: Aging, Drug Development, Regulatory Science

Research Project or Thesis Title:  Mechanistic dissection of drusen clearance in macular degeneration using phototherapy

Faculty Advisor: Dr. Stan Louie

Year of Study:  2nd