Meet our team

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Adam R. Hall

Principal Investigator

arhall[at]wakehealth.edu

BS Physics, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill (2002)

PhD Applied and Materials Sciences, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill (2007)

Postdoc, Technische Universiteit Delft, The Netherlands (2007-2010)

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Komal Sethi

Postdoctoral Associate

ksethi[at]wakehealth.edu

I was born and brought up in Delhi, India. I received a Ph.D. in Chemistry from University of Delhi where I studied synthesis of hybrid nanoparticles for applications in targeted drug delivery, photothermal therapy, and diagnostic imaging for the treatment of cancer. Currently, I am using the solid-state nanopore platform for pathogen detection. My scientific interest is to develop translational approaches with direct applications to clinically-relevant diseases. Outside of lab, I like experimenting in my kitchen, listening to music, and exploring new places.

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Dorothea Erxleben

PhD Student

derxlebe[at]wakehealth.edu

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.

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Bhoomija Hariprasad

PhD Student

bharipra[at]wakehealth.edu

I grew up in the San Francisco Bay Area, but later moved to Louisiana and received my B.S. in Biological Sciences at Louisiana State University. I received my M.S. in Biomedical Engineering at University of Houston, during which I completed my master’s thesis on software-based optimization of coaxial electrospinning of drug-loaded nanofibers. Currently, I am pursuing my PhD in Biomedical Engineering through the VT-Wake Forest SBES program in Dr. Hall’s lab. My research interests include tissue engineering, microfluidics, and precision medicine technologies. My current project is focused on “organ-on-a-chip” devices to study and combat glioblastoma cell migration. Outside of the lab, I enjoy singing, running, and reading crime novels.

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Damian Chance Hutchins

PhD Student

dchutchi[at]wakehealth.edu

I grew up in Shelby, North Carolina. I received a bachelor's in biomedical science from Gardner-Webb University. I then moved to Winston-Salem to get my Master's 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.

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Sara Abu Jalboush

PhD Student

sabujal[at]wakehealth.edu

I am originally from Jordan. I received a B.Sc. degree in Biotechnology and Genetic Engineering and an M.Sc. 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 Ph.D. 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.

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Maxwell Lee

PhD Student

maclee[at]wakehealth.edu

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.

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Dariya Lizanets

PhD Student

dlizanet[at]wakehealth.edu

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 B.S. 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 Ph.D. 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.

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Ian Wadsworth

PhD Student

iwadswor[at]wakehealth.edu

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.

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Ian Smith

Undergraduate Researcher

smitim19[at]wfu.edu

I was born and raised in Mars Hill, NC and am currently a Senior at Wake Forest University majoring in Biochemistry and Molecular Biology. My work in the Hall Lab has revolved around using solid-state nanopores to analyze hyaluronic acid and other biological molecules. Outside of the Lab, I enjoy finding new places in Winston-Salem, cooking big meals, painting by numbers, and taking care of my many plants.

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Paul Williams

Undergraduate Researcher

willph20[at]wfu.edu

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

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 (Posdoc, 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 City of Hope)

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)