Meet the Team!

Marta Garcia-Contreras, MSc, Ph.D.

Program: Postdoctoral Fellow, JHU Diversity Postdoctoral Alliance Committee Co-Chair

Research Interests: Understanding the secretome, specifically extracellular vesicles in the context of metabolic diseases

Degrees: B.S. Biotechnology , Polytechnic University of Valencia, Spain MSc Biomedical Biotechnology, Polytechnic University of Valencia, Spain International PhD Catholic University of Valencia, Spain (via University of Miami, FL), Cum Laude (Outstanding Doctorate Award)

Hometown: Valencia, Spain


Favorite Baltimore Venues: Mount Vernon, Bolton Hill

Chenxu “Vincent” Guo, Ph.D.

Program: Biological Chemistry Ph.D.

Research Interests: Genetic Engineering of Cells and Exosomes, SARS-CoV-2, HIV, Cancer Immunology

Degrees: B.A., B.S., Ph.D.

Hometown: Guangzhou, China


Hobbies: Playing basketball, watching movies, traveling, and taking vacations to do all of the above.

Yiwei Ai, M.D.

Program: Graduate Program in Biological Chemistry (GPBC)

Previous Institution: M.D. Harbin Medical University

Hometown: Harbin, China


Favorite scientist: Vivien Thomas

Yijing Gong

Program: Biochemistry and Molecular Biology

Research Interests: To develop synthetic cell signaling pathway as a new platform for treating chronic pain, and also as a research tool for studying complex signaling pathways.

Degrees & Institutions: B.S. with honors (Class 1), University of Liverpool, 2019 ScM, Johns Hopkins University, 2021

Hometown: Nanjing, China


Favorite Baltimore Venues: Every place with a lot of trees

Laura Mendez-Pinto

Program: Graduate Program in Biological Chemistry (GPBC)

Research Interests: Exosome engineering, cell biology, protein engineering

Degrees & Institutions: B.S. in Biochemistry, Hofstra University , 2022

Hometown: Bogotá, Colombia


Favorite Baltimore Venues: Federal Hill Park, Lucky’s Ice Cream, National Aquarium

Austin Dabbs

Program: Biological Chemistry Ph.D.

Research Interests: Protein engineering, protein kinase activity sensing, pathological pain signaling.

Degrees & Institutions: Chemistry B.S. & Interdisciplinary Studies B.S., Salisbury University

Hometown: Clarksville, Maryland


Favorite Baltimore Venues: Clavel, Koco food Truck, the Gould lab espresso machiene

Lareina Alvarez

Program: Basic Science Institute Summer Research Program

Research Interests: I’d like to learn more about the neurobiology of disease, pathobiology, as well as cellular biology since these subjects have great potential of being translational within the field of medicine!

Anticipated Degrees: B.S. Biology, University of Colorado Denver

Hometown: Denver, Colorado


Favorite Baltimore Venues: Inner Harbor, Franchesca’s Empanada Cafe, Pupuseria Mama Tana

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