DLS New Faculty Symposium

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We recently held a two day research symposium featuring our new faculty in the DLS departments: Cell Biology and Neuroscience, Kinesiology and Health, Genetics, Molecular Biology and Biochemistry to learn about different areas and build research connections across the Rutgers scientific community. Each session was comprised of a series of six talks, concluded by opportunities for further conversation in break-out rooms. The faculty featured are below:

Annika Barber (Molecular Biology and Biochemistry): Annika joined the Department of Molecular Biology and Biochemistry in January 2020 as an Assistant Professor, after completing her postdoctoral training at the University of Pennsylvania. She is also a faculty member of the Waksman Institute. Her research centers on neural signal integration in Drosophila behavioral circuits.

Christina Bergey (Genetics): Christina joined the Department of Genetics as an Assistant Professor in January 2020, after completing postdoctoral training at Pennsylvania State University. Her research aims to understand how organisms adapt to their environment with a focus on the evolution of complex, polygenic traits using population, evolutionary, and functional genomic approaches. 

Brian Daniels (Cell Biology and Neuroscience): Brian is from Greenville, South Carolina and received BA/BS degrees in English and Behavioral Biology. He then completed a PhD in Neuroscience at Washington University in St. Louis, followed by postdoctoral work at University of Washington in Seattle. Brian joined the Department of Cell Biology and Neuroscience in January 2019 as an Assistant Professor. His research is on infection and inflammation in the central nervous system. 

Anthony Delli Paoli (Kinesiology and Health): Anthony joined the Department of Kinesiology and Health in September 2019 from Manhattanville College in New York. He received his BA from Rutgers before going onto to Michigan State University to obtain his Master's and PhD and has come full circle back to Rutgers. He studies the psychology of physical activity and how it interfaces with feeling states and cognitive performance. Currently his research examines the role of physical activity and how it may help those who experience social challenges, such as being ignored, left out, or rejected. 

Jia Fei (Molecular Biology and Biochemistry): Jia joined the Department of Molecular Biology and Biochemistry in January 2020 as an Assistant Professor after postdoctoral training in University of Texas - MD Anderson Cancer Center and University of California San Diego. His research focuses on the regulation of gene expression in humans and other animals, particularly on chromatin dynamics and transcription by RNA polymerase II (Pol II).

Rafiq Huda (Cell Biology and Neuroscience): Rafiq joined the Department of Cell Biology and Neuroscience in January 2020 as an Assistant Professor after completing postdoctoral training in Massachusetts Institute of Technology. His research focuses on neural circuits, prefrontal cortex, behavior, and two photon imaging. 

Devanshi Jain (Genetics): Devanshi joined the Department of Genetics as an Assistant Professor in September 2019 from the Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center. Her research centers on gametogenesis and genome integrity. 

Kevin Monahan (Molecular Biology and Biochemistry): Kevin joined the Department of Genetics in January 2020 as an Assistant Professor after completing postdoctoral work first at University of California - San Francisco, and then at Columbia University, where he studied role of enhancers and nuclear architecture in controlling the expression of olfactory receptor genes. His current research interest is in gene regulation. 

Steven Malin (Kinesiology and Health): Steven joined the Department of Kinesiology and Health in September 2020 as an Associate Professor. He completed his postdoctoral fellowship at Cleveland Clinic and was an Assistant Professor at the University of Virginia before coming to Rutgers. The primary focus of his research is to improve the well-being of people through preventing/treating obesity related type 2 diabetes and cardiovascular disease.

Tetsuya Nakamura (Genetics): Tetsuya joined the Department of Genetics in January 2018 as an Assistant Professor. Prior to this, he was an Assistant Professor at Osaka University in Japan and then was a Postdoctoral Scholar at the University of Chicago. His research centers on revealing the genetic mechanisms of the fish diversity and their contribution to the fish-to-tetrapod transition.

Andrea Spaeth (Kinesiology and Health): Andrea joined the Department of Kinesiology and Health in September 2017 as an Assistant Professor after completing postdoctoral work at both the University of Pennsylvania and Temple University. Her research interest focuses on sleep research aimed at advancing the understanding of how changes in sleep behaviors affect health outcomes. 

Srujana Samhita (Sam) Yadavalli (Genetics): Sam joined the Department of Genetics in September 2020 as an Assistant Professor and is also a faculty member at the Waksman Institute. She was previously a Research Associate at Rutgers and did postdoctoral training at the University of Pennsylvania. Her primary research focus is on bacterial signaling pathways and regulation of gene expression.