Meet our team
Mohamed Amin Aguech
I was born and raised in Tunisia. In 2023, I earned my Ph.D. from the Chinese Academy of Sciences, where I developed my expertise in the field of solid-state nanopore technology.
In September 2023, I became a part of the Hall Lab. My research here is dedicated to pushing the boundaries of scientific understanding by utilizing solid-state nanopore platforms. My work involves developing transitional approaches for the detection of biomarkers, as well as facilitating epigenetic labeling and quantification using solid-state nanopores.
Outside the lab, I find joy in simple pleasures, including reading, cooking, and taking leisurely walks.
I was born and brought up in Kolkata, India. I received a PhD in Biomedical Engineering from Indian Institute of Technology-Banaras Hindu University (IIT-BHU), Varanasi, India where I tried to develop various functional three-dimensional microscale structures using microfluidics, surface micropatterning, freeze-drying, three-dimensional (3D) bioprinting and electrospinning. I then worked as a postdoctoral scholar in the Nanoscience Technology Center at the University of Central Florida, Orlando where I worked on a NIH funded project to address overdose and acute and chronic efficacy of opioids using a multi-organ human-on-a-chip system. I joined the Hall Lab in December 2022 where my role will be to improve the extraction process of hyaluronic acid from the currently existing protocols. When not working I enjoy watching movies, cooking Indian food, making food reels/shorts and exploring new places, restaurants, attractions and reviewing them.
While originally from southern Germany, my family and I relocated to the Triangle of North Carolina when I was young, so it was the foothills and mountains of NC that I grew to love. In 2015, I graduated from NC State with my bachelor's in Chemical Engineering. I then worked in the pharmaceutical industry, primarily developing drug delivery systems, until joining the Hall Lab in 2020. My interests stem from my fascination with our relationship to this planet, and the "how and why" of our survival in such dynamic surroundings. My current research aims to utilize and advance the discipline of nanopores to study hyaluronic acid and its ubiquitous role in physiology and disease. When not in the lab, I like to hike and bike in the shaded outdoors and will forage wild food on confident occasions.
I was born and raised in Vero Beach, FL and received my BS in Biomedical Engineering at Florida State University in 2023 with a concentration in Biomaterials and Biopolymers. During my undergraduate degree, I did research on stem cell therapy optimization. I am now working towards my PhD in Biomedical Engineering in the Virginia Tech-Wake Forest School of Biomedical Engineering and Sciences (SBES) under Dr. Hall. My research interests are in tissue engineering and regenerative medicine. When I am not in the lab, I enjoy pool or beach days, live theater, and trying new restaurants.
Damian Chance Hutchins
I grew up in Shelby, North Carolina. I received a BS in biomedical science from Gardner-Webb University. I then moved to Winston-Salem to get my MS in biomedical science at Wake Forest University. My interests in research started at a young age. Having been born without a pituitary gland, I spent many days of my youth in the hospital. There I got to learn all about my condition and how the different medications I take work. This early experience around the healthcare field allowed me to get a glimpse of the current limitations of medical treatment. I have now become devoted to finding new ways of improving medical care through translational science research. I am currently a PhD student Studying physiology and pharmacology. My current project focuses on the use of patient immune cells to fight cancer. We utilize a microfluidic chip to train t cells to recognize tumor antigens in the hopes of increasing their tumor cytotoxicity. Outside of the lab, I enjoy singing as well as playing both video and board games with friends.
Sara Abu Jalboush
I am originally from Jordan. I received a B.Sc. degree in Biotechnology and Genetic Engineering and an MSc degree in Applied Biology from Jordan University of Science and Technology. After that, I worked with StemCell-Innovations in Amman, Jordan where we used ultrasound cavitation technology to isolate autologous stromal vascular fraction (SVF) containing adipose tissue stem cells that can be used in a variety of clinical applications in the field of regenerative medicine. I am interested in using cutting-edge technologies to identify biomarkers and therapeutic targets that can be utilized to improve the management and treatment of cancer patients. Currently, I am pursuing my PhD in Molecular and Cellular Biosciences/Cancer Biology in the Hall lab. My current research aims to implement solid-state nanopore technology to selectively label and quantify epigenetic modifications and examine their role in radio-resistance. Outside the lab, I enjoy traveling and visiting new cities, hiking North Carolina’s gorgeous mountains and waterfalls, and watching movies in different languages.
I am originally from Northern Virginia and received my bachelor's in Biomedical Engineering from the University of Michigan in 2022. I am working towards a PhD through the Virginia-Tech Wake Forest School of Biomedical Engineering and Sciences (SBES) under Dr. Hall. My work in the Hall Lab consists of DNA sequencing using nanopores as well as hyaluronic acid analysis. Outside the lab, I enjoy building computers, reading, cooking, as well as play the cello and guitar.
I was born in Ukraine and came to New Jersey when I was a year old. I have lived in New Jersey pretty much my entire life so I am fairly new to North Carolina, but I am very excited to be in a new place. I graduated from Rutgers University in 2021 with a BS in Biomedical Engineering and I worked in a lab aiming to find a novel approach for the prevention of trauma-induced heterotopic ossification utilizing biomaterial scaffolds. I am now pursuing my PhD in Biomedical Engineering in SBES and am hoping to also do a concentration in regenerative medicine. Tissue engineering and regenerative medicine are extremely fascinating to me and I have always been interested in research involving the study of disease. My current project involves using biomimetic organoid systems to study the effects of radiation on human lung tissue. Outside of the lab, I love cooking, hiking, and exploring new places.
I was born and raised in Las Vegas, NV and got my BS and MS degrees at Utah State University studying Biological Engineering. I am interested in nanotechnology, nanodrug delivery, and in vitro disease modeling. Currently, I am optimizing solid-state nanopore detection to probe for microRNA biomarkers in support of early cancer detection. Outside the lab, I play bass guitar, enjoy any live music, and play ice hockey.
I was born in Fayetteville, NC and raised just outside of Memphis, TN. I have visited many places in North Carolina throughout my life, so I am excited to finally be able to call this state home. I received my BS in Biomedical Engineering at the University of Oklahoma in 2023 where I worked on synthesizing and modifying gold and silver nanoparticles. I am currently pursuing a PhD in Biomedical Engineering in the Virginia Tech-Wake Forest School of Biomedical Engineering and Sciences (SBES) under Dr. Hall. I am interested in nanotechnology and materials science and would like to use those skills in cancer research. Outside of lab, I like to play the electric guitar, kiteboard, go to concerts, hike, and surf.
I was born and raised in Orlando, Fl, and am a Junior at Wake Forest University majoring in Biochemistry and Molecular Biology. My work in the Hall Lab has focused on the detection and quantification of hyaluronic acids using solid-state nanopores. Outside of the lab, I enjoy traveling, exploring different cities in North Carolina, trying new foods, and learning about different cultures.
I am from Croton-On-Hudson, New York and am a Junior at Wake Forest University. My major is Biochemistry and Molecular Biology and I am also pursuing a minor in Engineering. In the Hall Lab I am currently characterizing solid-state nanopores with the goal of finding optimal sized devices to run experiments with biomarkers/other biological molecules on. Outside of the lab I love hiking, running, enjoying sports, and playing the piano.
Past Group Members
Komal Sethi (PostDoc)
Bhoomija Hariprasad (now at VA Houston)
Felipe Rivas (PhD, now at Charter Medical, LLC)
Robyn Greissinger (MS, now at Sagent Pharmaceuticals)
Katherine Reiss (Undergraduate Researcher)
Nathan Hauser (MS, now at Wake Forest BME)
Lucy Vaughn (Undergraduate Researcher, now at AstraZeneca)
Fanny Wang (PhD, now at IQVIA)
Shiny Rajan (PhD, now at Javelin Biotech)
Mckaila Danajka (Undergraduate Researcher)
Sam Bearden (Postdoc, now at Integrated DNA Technologies)
Nathan Beatson (Undergraduate Researcher)
Nico Boyalian (Undergraduate Researcher)
Zoe Hurtado (Undergraduate Researcher)
Monique Otero (Undergraduate Researcher)
Osama Zahid (PhD, now at WF Innovations)
Laura Miron (Undergraduate Researcher)
Lauren Huff (Undergraduate Researcher)
Austin Bauersmith (Undergraduate Researcher)
Parker Hambright (Undergraduate Researcher)
Ellen Oliver (Undergraduate Researcher)
Brandi Swain (Undergraduate Researcher)
Dhruba Basu Roy (Postdoc; now at Medtronic)
Clare Burke (summer intern, Texas at Austin)
Michael Marshall (PhD, now at UNCG Tech Transfer)
Weili Qu (summer intern, Emory/Ga Tech)
Eran Brown (summer intern, Penn State)
Autumn Carlsen (Postdoc; now at U. Ottowa)
Furat Sawafta (MS, now at Teleflex Inc)
Jijin Yang (Zeiss Application Specialist)
Cody McGrath (Undergraduate Researcher; now at UNC-CH)
Zachary Webb (Undergraduate Researcher)
Nataniel Pardridge (Undergraduate Researcher)
Adam Eury (Undergraduate Researcher)
Ellen Yang (High school intern)