International Research Experiences for Students: Mentors

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High Throughput Genomics
Computational Biology
Developmental Systems

HIgh Throughput Genomics

Duke Faculty

Greg Crawford

Greg Crawford, Ph.D., is an associate professor in the Department of Pediatrics at Duke University and a member of GCB. He received his Ph.D. from the University of Michigan in 2001 and has been at Duke since 2006. The Crawford Lab focuses on identifying gene regulatory elements across the genome to understand how chromatin structure dictates cell function and fate.


Charlie Gersbach

Charlie Gersbach, Ph.D., is an associate professor of biomedical engineering at Duke University and a member of GCB. Gersbach received his Ph.D. from the Georgia Institute of Technology in 2006. The Gersbach Lab applies innovated methods in molecular and genetic engineering, regenerative medicine and genetic disease treatment. His research aims to develop new technologies to modify genome sequences, epigenetic regulation and cellular gene networks in a precise and targeted manner.


Tim Reddy

Tim Reddy, Ph.D., is an assistant professor of biostatistics and bioinformatics and molecular genetics and microbiology at Duke University. He is also a member of GCB. Reddy received his Ph.D. from Boston University in 2007. The Reddy Lab investigates how genetic variation that alters gene regulation contributes to human traits. His research aims to better understand the gene-regulatory bases for human evolution and human disease in hopes of eventually finding new pathways of disease that can ultimately be targeted for novel diagnostics and treatments.


Berlin Faculty

Andreas Mayer

Andreas Mayer, Ph.D., is a research group leader at the Max Planck Institute for Molecular Genetics. He received his Ph.D. from Ludwig-Maximilians Universität in 2012. The primary goal of the Mayer Lab’s research is to reveal the key mechanisms that underline the regulation of chromatin-mediated nascent RNA polymerase II transcription in differentiated mammalian cells and during cell differentiation. Additionally, his team is interested in how a dysregulation of nascent transcription causes human disease.


Ana Pombo

Ana Pombo, DPhil, is a professor of biology at Humboldt University and senior group leader at the Berlin Institute for Medical Systems Biology at Max Delbrück Center for Molecular Medicine in Berlin. She received her DPhil from the University of Oxford in 1998. The Pombo lab is interested in understanding the interplay between gene regulation and genome architecture toward defining rules and principles of genome function. The lab studies mechanisms of gene expression at multiple levels, from the local action of transcription factors, to long-range chromatin looping events that connect regulatory DNA sequences with the genes they regulate, to how whole chromosomes are positioned within cell nuclei.


Niklaus Rajewsky

Niklaus Rajewsky, Ph.D., is a professor of systems biology at the Max Delbrück Center for Molecular Medicine in Berlin. He also founded the Berlin Institute for Medical Systems Biology in 2008. The Rajewsky Lab studies how RNA regulates gene expression and focuses on the function of RNA.


Edda Schulz

Edda Schultz, Ph.D., is a research group leader at the Max Planck Institute for Molecular Genetics in Berlin. She received her Ph.D. from Humboldt Universität and Deutsches Rhuema-Forschungszentrum in 2009. The overall goal of the Schulz Lab is to elucidate regulatory principles employed by complex regulatory networks to reliably control the transition of embryonic stem cells to further differentiated cell types. By combining mathematical modeling with microscopy, (single cell) genomics, genome engineering and CRISPR screens, her lab investigates the molecular mechanisms that govern X-inactivation and link it with stem cell differentiation.

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Computational Biology

Duke Faculty

Raluca Gordan

Raluca Gordân, Ph.D., is an associate professor of biostatistics & bioinformatics and computer science at Duke University and a member of GCB. Gordân received her Ph.D. from Duke in 2003 and has been at Duke since 2011. The Gordan Lab researches the area of regulatory genomics, with a focus on developing quantitative assays and mechanistic models. Her aim is to investigate how transcription factors interact with one another and how they interact with other cellular processes that involve the genome, such as DNA damage and repair.


Alex Hartemink

Alex Hartemink, Ph.D., is a professor of computer science and biology at Duke University and a member of GCB. Hartemink received in Ph.D. from Massachusetts Institute of Technology in 2001 and arrived at Duke that same year. Specific application areas of the Hartemink Lab include regulatory genomics and systems biology. Current high-level projects include discovering principles and mapping networks of transcriptional regulation, understanding the role of chromatin organization in enacting this regulation, understanding the role of chromatin organization in enacting this regulation, and revealing the mechanisms that control dynamic cellular processes, like the eukaryotic cell cycle.


Michael Lov

Michael Love, Dr., rer. nat., is an assistant professor of biostatistics at UNC-Chapel Hill University. He earned his doctoral degree from the Freie Universität and Max Planck Institute for Molecular Genetics in Berlin in 2013. The Love Lab’s research concerns statistical and computational methods for the analysis of high-throughput sequencing assays to facilitate biomedical and biological research. In addition, Love studies the effect of lab-to-lab variation on computational estimation of gene isoform abundance in the presence of common technical biases.


Sayan Mukherjee

Sayan Mukherjee, Ph.D., is a professor of statistical science at Duke University and a member of GCB. Mukherjee has a wide variety of research interest, including statistical and computational methodology in genetics, cancer biology, metagenomics, and morphometrics; Bayesian methodology for high dimensional and complex data; machine learning algorithms for the analysis of massive biological data; integration of statistical inference with differential geometry and algebraic topology; stochastic topology; discrete Hodge theory; and inference in dynamical systems.


Berlin Faculty

Martin Kircher

Martin Kircher, Dr. rer. nat., is a junior group leader in computational genome biology at the Berlin Institute of Health. He received his Ph.D. from the University of Leipzig in Germany in 2011. The Kircher Lab’s research focuses on computational approaches of identifying functionally relevant genetic changes in disease and adaptation as well as developing more sensitive methods in diagnostics, especially exome, genome and cell-free DNA sequencing.


Uwe Ohler

Uwe Ohler, Ph.D., is a professor at the Max Delbrück Center in Berlin, with a primary appointment in the Department of Biology and a secondary appointment in the Department of Computer Science at Humboldt University in Berlin. He received his Ph.D. from Friedrich-Alexander-University Erlangen-Nuremberg in 2002. In 2005, Ohler joined the faculty of the Institute of Genome Sciences & Policy at Duke University, where he received tenure in 2011. The Ohler Lab develops and uses computational and genomics approaches to understand the biology of gene regulation in eukaryotic organisms. Their long-term goal is to investigate how regulatory networks enable the correct development of complex organisms with their multitude of cell types that carry out different functions despite the same genome.


Martin Vingron

Martin Vingron, Ph.D., is a professor of computational and molecular biology at the Max Planck Institute for Molecular Genetics. He received his Ph.D. in mathematics from Heidelberg University in 1991. The Vingron Lab pursues methods development and collaborative data analysis in the fields of transcription factor-based and epigenetic gene regulation and works on analysis of genomic sequences in search for regulatory effects of mutations.

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Developmental Systems

Duke FAculty

Philip Benfy

Philip Benfey, Ph.D., is a professor of biology at Duke University. He received his Ph.D. from Harvard University in 1986. The Benfey Lab addresses the question, “how do cells acquire their identities” by using a combination of genetics, molecular biology and genomics to identify and characterize the genes that regulate formation of the root in the plant model system, Arabidopsis thaliana.


Debra Silver

Debra Silver, Ph.D., is an associate professor of molecular genetics and microbiology, cell biology, and neurobiology at Duke University. She received her Ph.D. from Johns Hopkins University in 2003. The Silver Lab studies embryonic brain development, with a specific focus on neurogenesis of the cerebral cortex. Overall mission of the research lab is to elucidate genetic and cellular mechanisms controlling cortical development and contributing to neurodevelopmental pathologies and brain evolution.


Anne West

Anne West, M.D., Ph.D., is an associate professor of neurobiology at Duke University. She received her M.D. and Ph.D. from Harvard University in 1998. The West Lab’s long term goal is to understand at a cellular/molecular level how neuronal activity regulates the formation and maturation of synapses during brain development, and ultimately, to use genetic model systems to understand how defects in this developmental process lead to cognitive dysfunction.


Greg Wray

Greg Wray, Ph.D., is a professor of biology and evolutionary anthropology at Duke University. He also serves as director of GCB. Wray received his Ph.D. from Duke University in 1987. The Wray Lab studies the evolution of genes and genomes with the broad aim of understanding the origins of biological diversity. Their approach focuses on changes in the expression of genes using both empirical and computational approaches and spans scales of biological organization from single nucleotides through gene networks to entire genomes.


Berlin Faculty

David Garfield

David Garfield, Ph.D., is an independent group leader for evolutionary biology at Humboldt-Universität in Berlin. The Garfield Lab’s primary focus is on the evolutionary forces that shape gene expression profiles during development with particular interests in understanding the impacts of new mutations on phenotypes and how interactions between genes in development influences the visibility of mutations to natural selection.


Kerstin Kaufmann

Kerstin Kaufmann, Ph.D., is a professor in the Department for Plant Cell and Molecular Biology at Humboldt Universität in Berlin. She received her Ph.D. from Jena University in 2005. The Kaufmann Lab is interested in the molecular mechanisms that control the activities of genes across development using a combination of epigenomics, proteomics and classical genetics. She aims to understand multicellular development at the systems level by combining experimental and computational analyses.


Stefan Mundlos

Dr. Stefan Mundlos is an external scientific member at the Max-Planck Institute for Molecular Genetics. He is also the director of the Institute for Medical and Human Genetics at the Charité. The Mundlos Lab’s main focus is understanding genetic mechanisms of normal and abnormal development with a particular focus on the skeleton. Mechanisms of gene regulation and how they are influenced by genomic variation are an important aspect of his current work.


Robert Zinzen

Dr. Robert Zinzen is a scientist in the Department of System Biology at the Max Delbruck Center for Molecular Medicine. The aim of the Zinzen Lab is to understand the molecular mechanisms underlying nervous system primordium specification, its subdivision and the regulated delamination of differentiating neuroblasts.

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