Lab Members

Aïssatou Diawara, Research associate
PhD, McGill University
Aïssatou earned her PhD in Parasitology from McGill University in 2013 where she worked on the development of genetic markers to monitor drug resistance in human soil-transmitted helminths. Aïssatou is interested in questions of importance to public health and her research combines field work and experimentation. Her current research focuses on studying host-parasite interactions and immune response in malaria.

 

Massar Dieng, Associate Scientist
BSc, MSc University of Tours
Massar obtained a BSc in Biochemistry and a MSc in Immunology at the University of Tours in France. He joined the Research Center of Sainte-Justine Hospital as a Research Assistant and worked for several years on immunotherapy in childhood cancers, graft versus host disease, and primary immunodeficiencies. Massar is in charge of the day-to-day management of the lab and oversees and develops single-cell genomics research projects.

 

Justin Wilcox, Post-Doctoral Associate
PhD, University of Notre Dame
Justin earned his PhD from the University of Notre Dame where he completed a doctoral dissertation on the population genetics and community ecology of parasites in long-tailed macaques of Singapore and Bali, Indonesia. Justin’s current work applies genomics-based approaches to answer questions of diversification, selection, and genetic architecture in falcons (Genus: Falco) and their associated-symbiont communities. This project is co-advised by Stéphane Boissinot, and part of the Center for Genomics and Systems Biology Biodiversity and Environmental Genomics Project at NYUAD.

Wael Said Abdrabou, PhD Student
MSc Northeastern University
Wael earned his BSc in Biology and MSc in Biotechnology. After graduating, he joined Massachusetts Eye and Ear Infirmary in Boston where he investigated candidate genes and genetic variants associated with Glaucoma. Currently, Wael is a PhD student at NYUAD and his research interests include investigating metabolomic and transcriptomic perturbations associated with malaria and the use of current genetic editing techniques such as CRISPR for functional validation studie

Fatima Al Jallaf, Research Assistant
MSc. Masdar Institute of Science and Technology
Fatima earned her BSc in Biotechnology from the University of Sharjah and her MSc in Water and Environmental Engineering from Masdar Institute. During her masters, Fatima has successfully isolated and characterized native and novel microbial strains in the UAE with promising agricultural applications. Currently, Fatima is working on medical genetic projects on the UAE population

 

Tami Gjorgjieva
BSc, NYU Abu Dhabi
Tami is a Postgraduate Research Fellow in Genetics and Law, passionate about human population genetics as well as the ethical, legal and social implications (ELSI) of genetics. She is currently studying the population structure of UAE nationals and modeling the heritability of cardiometabolic traits as part of the UAE Healthy Future Study. 

Manikandan Vinu, Bioinformatician
MSc Amrita University
Vinu obtained his MSc in Bioinformatics from Amrita University in India and has years of experience as a programmer and analyst in industrial and academic settings. Vinu is in charge of overseeing computational work in the lab, working closely with lab members to develop pipelines and perform bioinformatic analysis of high-throughput sequencing data for various projects.

 

Jian Ryou, Capstone Student
NYUAD
Jian is interested in studying human genetic variation that has clinical relevance. Her capstone research focuses on studying variations in human host immune response to malaria and involves single-cell genomic approaches to understand how PBMC composition changes throughout malaria infection. 

 

Bana Alamad, Capstone Student
NYU Abu Dhabi, Class of 2020
Bana is interested in studying the genetic basis of diseases with clinical relevance.  Her capstone research focuses on epigenetic profiling of Single-Cell and bulk Peripheral Blood Mononuclear Cells (PBMCs) in response to P. falciparum infection. hoping to better understand host immune response to malaria infection.

Ariya Chaloemtoem, Capstone Student
NYU Abu Dhabi, Class of 2021
Ariya is a Junior majoring in Biology and minoring in Computer Science. Her capstone project focuses on miRNA expression variation and subsequently their role in regulating immune responses to malaria

Rama Alhariri, Capstone Student
NYU Abu Dhabi, Class of 2021
Rama is an undergraduate student from the Class of 2021 studying biology with a minor in Peace Studies. She has an interest in medical genetics and is particularly interested in its applications in the realm of public health. As part of her capstone thesis, Rama is currently working on a national project called the UAE Healthy Future Study and is specifically investigating arterial stiffness as a subclinical trait of cardiovascular disease.

Netanya Danielle Keil, Capstone Student
NYU Abu Dhabi, Class of 2021
Netanya is an undergraduate student interested in human population genetics. Her capstone project aims to study variation in the malaria parasite and its human hosts on the transcriptome level and how host and parasite genes interact with each other.

Odmaa Bayaraa, Capstone Student
NYU Abu Dhabi, Class of 2022
Odmaa is a Class of 2022 undergraduate majoring in biology and minoring in computer science. She is interested in computational biology as well as the applications of CRISPR to further study gene regulation. Her current work utilizes CRISPR-CAS9 knockouts to analyze differential expression of miRNA and target genes.

Youssef Idaghdour, Principal Investigator
Assistant Professor of Biology
PhD, North Carolina State University
Research Areas: genomes and the environment  

Lab Alumni

Remi Ketchum, Class of 2015
Sam Ridgeway, Class of 2016
Rasha Shraim, Class of 2016
Nahla Ibrahim, Class of 2016
Gabriel Torres, Class of 2017
Sharon Qiu, Class of 2018
YoonHoo Chang, Class of 2019
Dareen Almojil, Post-Doctoral Associate