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Student Spotlight

Incoming Fall 2023 Cohort

Guadalupe Calderon

Education: Bachelor of Science in Science in Biology with a concentration in Biomedical Sciences

Research Interest: I am interested in drug testing and disease research—anything from learning how the disease affects us to trying to cure it.  I am interested in viruses, cardiovascular, and neurological diseases.

About Me I was born and raised in Houston, but both of my parents were born and raised in Mexico.  Yes, I can speak Spanish, and I love to eat spicy food.

Fun Fact: I minored in music as an undergrad.  I really love to sing, so my voice was my instrument.

Carolyn Nguyen

Education: Bachelor of Science in Biology and University of Houston

Research Interest:  Epigenetics and aging. I am interested in the role of epigenetic modifications, such as chromatin remodeling and DNA methylation, in aging processes and applying this knowledge to reduce health disparities.  Identifying reprogramming factors that can reverse aging and understanding critical pathways in the epigenome can lead to promising clinical therapeutics for cardiovascular and neurogenerative diseases.  Translating these research findings to clinical applications would be critical in slowing down or reversing the pace of aging, thus reducing health disparities across diverse populations. 

About Me:  My hobbies are sewing, reading, arts and crafts. Favorite foods are snacks from all cuisines (Japanese, Indian, Mexican) because you get to try a wide variety of food without getting full. I love my dog named Chico.

Fun Fact: I am ambidextrous!


Tatsuki Nonomura

Education: Bachelor of Engineering in Applied Chemistry at Osaka University, Japan.

Research Focus Interest: Immunotherapy, chemogenomics, and optogenetics.

Research Interest:  I have been working on Chemical Biology research, primarily focusing on photo pharmacology to manipulate gene expression at a cellular level optically.  My current interest is developing novel cancer treatments empowered by chemogenetics and optogenetics.  I hope my findings will be translated into clinical applications. 

Isla Mata

Education: Bachelor of Science in Biochemistry and Genetics from Texas A&M

Research Focus Interest: Immunology, Genetics, Bacteriophage, and Translational Science

Research Interest: My interests come in a broad spectrum of topics, having worked in different labs throughout my undergrad and after graduation.  I am coming to the IBT with an open mind and seeing where my interests will lead me. 

Sokviseth Moeng

Education: Bachelor of Science in Biomedical Science and Master of Science in Biomedical Science from Hallym University(Chuncheon, South Korea)

Research Focus Interest: Cancer biology, Anticancer-drug discovery and resistance, and Liquid Biopsy

Research Interest: I am interested in studying the mechanisms associated with cancer biology, especially in anti-cancer drug resistance.  Moreover, I want to explore how to develop new approaches to detect or treat cancer effectively.  Since cancer is a complicated disease and is a significant threat to human health, developing early cancer detection (Liquid biopsy) using clinical samples, such as plasma, ctDNA, etc., is essential. I am also looking forward to being involved in this project.  

Nesha Rubin

Education: Bachelor of Science in Biochemistry at the University of Texas at Austin

Research Focus Interest: Drug discovery, Epigenetics, and signaling pathways

Research Interest: I am interested in epigenetic research and investigating how our habits and environment can affect our DNA.  I am also interested in discovering the potential therapeutic targets associated with the disease of aging, such as arthritis.  Lastly, I am interested in investigating different cellular signaling pathways and how irregularities can lead to disease. 

About Me: I love being outdoors, and my hobbies are hiking, swimming, and paddle boarding. I have a dog named Lulu.

Fun Fact: I am from Sri Lanka but also lived in Louisiana for ten years.