Mark obtained his Ph.D. in Neurobiology at Harvard Medical School under the mentorship of Dr. David Van Vactor. He trained as a postdoctoral fellow with Dr. Connie Cepko in the Harvard Medical School Department of Genetics and joined The City College of New York's Biology Department as an assistant professor in the Fall of 2012. Mark's interest is in understanding the basic molecular mechanisms underlying the development of the eye and to contribute to the generation of new therapies for human retinal disease. Outside of lab, Mark most enjoys any activity that involves his family.
Miruna graduated from the Doctoral School of Biology of the Babeș-Bolyai University in Cluj Napoca, Romania after completing research studies at the National Eye Institute, at the NIH in Bethesda, MD, as well as at the Institute of Neuroscience of the National Research Council, in Pisa, Italy. Her doctoral thesis is entitled "Molecular tools to study the development and organization of the retinal neuronal networks". Her research interests are related to the retinal development - cell types specification and circuit assembly, using as experimental model the chicken and the mouse.
She is originally from Petrosani, a small town in Transylvania. She loves traveling and always uses conferences as a good reason to meet people around the world with similar interests.
Diego Buenaventura is a Neuroscience/Biology Doctoral Student in Dr. Emerson’s lab since August 2013. His work involves the characterization of restricted progenitor lineages important in the production of photoreceptors through functional assays and high-throughput sequencing methods. His research interests are in molecular approaches to neuroscience and in dealing with large amounts of sequencing data.
Diego is originally from Guayaquil, Ecuador. He enjoys cooking something new every week, doodling on any surface around him, and reading (or listening) to scifi or fantasy literature.
B.A. Genetics, Rutgers University - New Brunswick, 2013
Sruti Patoori is a doctoral student in the lab. She graduated from Rutgers University – New Brunswick in 2013 with a B.A in Genetics and conducted her undergraduate research in population genetics. She is interested in bioinformatics, the human capacity for language and the evolution of developmental processes. She enjoys fiction, poetry, sugar, and reminding people that she is from New Jersey.
Sean McCaffery is a Ph.D. student in Molecular Cellular and Developmental Biology at the CUNY Graduate Center. Prior to beginning his doctoral program, Sean attended Marist College in Poughkeepsie, NY, where he majored in Biomedical Sciences and minored in Chemistry and Spanish. Sean has been a member of the Emerson lab since March of 2014. Sean is interested in studying the mechanisms underlying development and how these processes can be manipulated to design therapies for regenerative medicine.
B.S./M.S. Biology, The City College of New York, 2018
Benjamin Souferi is in the BS/MS program in Biology at the City College Honors Program. His interests include the genetic variations between vertebrates that lead to the phenotypic differences in the topography of the retina. He is fascinated by neuroscience and enjoys playing basketball on his spare time.
Benjamin has held two executive positions for the CCNY Volunteer Emergency Services and is now Co-President of the CCNY Biology Club. He won the Sharon-Cosloy Award and the Olivia-McKenna Award from the Biology Department, was granted an NSF-REU Fellowship for the Summer of 2015, and looks forward to applying to medical school after graduation.
Kazi Hossain is a sophomore in his undergraduate studies; he is majoring in Biology and has been conducting research in Dr. Emerson’s lab since June of 2015. He is interested in studying Immunology, Neurobiology and is currently working on identifying new retinal enhancers.
Outside of the lab Kazi is an Ellen Knowles Harcourt Scholar, and hates taking photographs that involve him tilting his head down.
B.Eng. Biomedical Engineering, The City College of New York, 2016.
Brian Wang graduated from CCNY with a B. Eng in Biomedical Engineering and has worked in Dr. Emerson’s Lab since February 2013. His interests include medical devices, neuroscience, data analysis, and web design. Brian is a New York City native who enjoys photography in his spare time and has finally found the best halal food in New York City. After graduating, he will be moving to Kansas City to start a job working in the healthcare technology industry.
B.Eng. Chemical Engineering, The City College of New York, 2016
Sneha Gopal graduated from CCNY in May 2016 with a B. Eng in Chemical Engineering and will be working towards a Ph. D at Rennselaer Polytechnic University. She worked in Dr. Emerson’s Lab in February 2013 until her graduation and loves reading, drawing and learning to program during her free time.
Isabel Tadmiri was a high school student in the Emerson lab. She is a junior at the Brearley School, located on the Upper East Side of Manhattan. Isabel is interested in pursuing biology and neuroscience in the future, and is interested in nervous system disorders, specifically, Autism Spectrum Disorder.