Attending

Visitor Biographies
 

NTU EMCRs/PhD student list

Student

Theme

Lab leader

Tobias Christian WUNDER

Plant Biology

Mueller-Cajar

Minh Tuan TRAN

Plant Biology

Miao Yansong

Ka Ho WONG

Plant Biology

Tam

Qiao Wen TAN

Plant Biology

Mutwil

Jiayi HUANG

Plant Biology

Tam

Zhijun GUO

Plant Biology

Mueller-Cajar

 

 

 

Abbas EL SAHILI

Structural Biology

Julien Lescar

Chenrui XU 

Structural Biology

Wu Bin

Ambuj Kumar KUSHWAHA

Structural Biology

Shashi Bhushan

Wuan Geok SAW

Structural Biology

Gruber

Barbara HUEBNER

Structural Biology

Sandin

Bhargy SHARMA

Structural Biology

Pervushin

Margaret PHILIPS

Structural Biology

Pervushin

 

 

 

Wen Han TONG

Parasitology

Ajai Vyas

Jerzy Michal DZIEKAN 

Parasitology

Bozdech

Grennady WIRJANATA

Parasitology

Bozdech

Ameya SINHA

Parasitology

Preiser

Radoslaw Igor OMELIANCZYK

Parasitology

Preiser

 

NTU EMCRs/PhD student biographies
 

Tobias WUNDER

I studied biology at the Ludwig Maximilian University of Munich (Germany), with my final year project being about protein import into plastids in Prof. Enrico Schleiff’s team. Then I joined Prof. Dario Leister’s group for PhD to study the light reactions of photosynthesis and membrane phosphorylation in plants. Since 2014, I’m working as research fellow with Prof. Oliver Mueller-Cajar at NTU Singapore to investigate the pyrenoid in eukaryotic microalgae like diatoms and green algae. These organisms sequester the CO2-fixing carboxylase Rubisco into the pyrenoidal subcompartment to form the center piece of a powerful CO2-concentrating mechanism (CCM). This helps to make good for the slow and error-prone kinetic properties of Rubisco by saturating its active site with substrate. The biochemistry of the pyrenoid is governed by Liquid-Liquid Phase Separation (LLPS) facilitated by intrinsically disordered proteins, which allows dynamic component exchange at maximized local protein concentrations.

Minh Tuan TRAN

My long-term interest is plant-microbe interaction. I got my Ph.D. in Plant Pathology at the University of Wisconsin-Madison in 2016. My previous work focused mainly on understanding how soil-borne pathogens deploy extracellular DNases not only to evade root extracellular DNA traps and infect plants, but also to facilitate cell dispersion from biofilm inside plant xylem vessels. After graduating, I joined NTU as a postdoctoral fellow and have been working under the supervision of Prof. Yansong Miao. In our lab, we are interested in various aspects of plant cell biology with a special focus on the actin cytoskeleton and membrane trafficking. My current project involves studying a wide range of plant cell responses, such as receptor trafficking and membrane dynamics during interaction with bacterial quorum sensing signals, using advanced microscopy and biochemistry approaches. Beside my hobby of killing plants (for research), I also enjoy swimming, reading and urban sketching.

Ka Ho WONG

Dr Wong received his Bachelor of Pharmacy in 2010 from the University of Sydney. After graduation, he studied Graduate Certificate of Herbal Medicine because of his long-standing interest in medicinal herbs. He continued his PhD study in the laboratory of Professor Kelvin Chan at the University of Sydney. His PhD thesis focused on the development of rapid and robust analytical methodologies in authenticating traditional Chinese medicines. He was awarded his doctorate degree in 2014 and joined the laboratory of Professor James P. Tam at the Nanyang Technological University, Singapore. His research interests are focused on the discovery and characterization of bioactive cystine-dense peptides from medicinal plants and bioinformatics analyses of peptide asparaginyl ligase in planta.

Qiao Wen TAN

Born and raised in Singapore, an island city-state also known as a “City in a garden”, Qiao Wen developed a passion towards plants and how they have evolved. She received her first class honours degree in Biological Sciences from Nanyang Technological University (NTU) in 2018, where she studied the phylogeny of cysteine proteases in carnivorous plants under Visiting Professor Victor Albert. She received her Diploma with merit in Molecular Biotechnology as the silver medallist at Ngee Ann Polytechnic in 2015. She is a recipient of the Agency for Science, Technology and Research (A*STAR) Science Award, A*STAR Undergraduate Scholarship and Ngee Ann Polytechnic Scholarship. Qiao Wen is a first year PhD. student at the School of Biological Sciences in NTU where she is studying the mechanisms behind heat stress adaptation in Brachypodium distachyon using computational and systems biology approach in Asst. Prof. Marek Mutwil’s group.

Jiayi HUANG

Huang Jiayi is a fourth year PhD student from Professor James P Tam’s lab, School of Biological Sciences, NTU. She comes from China and graduated from South China University of Technology with a bachelor degree in Food Science and Technology, in where she has been part of the authors in publishing three papers based on the bioactive components in lychee seeds, walnut as well as maca. During her PhD study in NTU, she has been focusing on discovering and characterization of cysteine-rich peptides from medicinal plants, which include Coffea canephora, Astragalus membranaceus and Potentilla anserine. She has one publication on the discovery of cysteine-rich peptides from A. membranaceus. She has attended the 2017 Annual Meeting of the American Society for Biochemistry and Molecular Biology, presenting the work on ‘Profiling and Authentication of Herbal Products’. Additionally, she has been assisted in organizing the 2nd Peptides and Proteins Symposium Singapore 2016 and 7th International Peptide symposium 2015.

Zhijun GUO

I am ZhiJun, an avid Rubisco researcher working alongside Assoc. Prof Oliver Mueller-Cajar at Nanyang Technological University in Singapore. I am currently anticipating my PhD oral defense. In my research, I focus on the directed evolution of Rubisco in the presence and absence of its helper chaperone, Rubisco activase using a Rubisco dependent Escherichia coli system. My research aims to obtain insights into the underlying principles governing the shortcomings of the Rubisco and its protein-protein interactions with accessory proteins.

Abbas EL SAHILI

My name is El Sahili Abbas. I did my bachelor of biochemistry in Lille in Northern France and my Master’s degree in Protein and Enzyme Engineering in Nancy in Eastern France. After my PhD in the cold and grey Paris, France, where I worked on biochemistry and structural biology of bacteria, I joined sunny and warm Singapore and NTU in 2015. I work in Julien Lescar group as a Research Fellow and I focus among other projects on the structure and mechanism of peptide ligases and I try to make those proteins do what we want them to in a more efficient way. I thus combine the Biochemistry, the Engineering and the Structural Biology training to paste proteins together. Lived in Asia, Europe and Africa so far, let’s see how is Australia!

Chenrui XU

Our research field is immunology and structure biology. We are currently doing some work about protein filament oligomer structure reconstruction and immune adaptor protein interaction prediction with computational methods. I am also developing some software to make Cryo-EM image processing smoother.

Ambuj Kumar KUSHWAHA

Ambuj Kumar Kushwaha was born in Allahabad, India. He received his bachelor's degree from Allahabad University, India, and master’s in biotechnology from Devi Ahilya University, India. He worked as a project assistant at the National Botanical Research Institute, India, and the Central Drug Research Institute, India. In August 2008, he joined the Department of Biological Sciences, Louisiana State University, USA, to pursue his doctorate in biochemistry. There he studied the functional significance of unique sequences in Mycobacterium smegmatis Ku proteins. During his course of a graduate career, he taught introductory biology labs as a teaching assistant to the department. In March 2014, he accepted a postdoctoral position at National Institutes of Health, USA where he studied calcium uptake in Plasmodium-infected red blood cells. Currently, he is a Research Fellow in Dr. Shashi Bhushan’s lab at Nanyang Technological University, Singapore, where he is working on mycobacterial membrane proteins.

Wuan Geok SAW

Saw is a postdoctoral researcher at School of Biological Science in Nanyang Technological University, under Prof. Gerhard Gruber’s laboratory. She received her Bachelor of Science from NTU, and continued her PhD study in the same university. Her interest lies largely in developing new techniques, acquiring knowledge of current technologies as well as troubleshooting of research problems. In attending this “conference”, she hopes to learn different techniques used globally and adopt them in her ongoing projects. 

In her PhD study, she was involved in the structural characterization and analysis of the Dengue and Zika virus. Her work is largely specialised in the utilisation of Small-angle X-ray scattering (SAXS).

Currently, Saw is researching on the electron transport chain of mycobacterium.

Barbara HUEBNER

I’m a Research Associate in the group of Sara Sandin and my main project is the in situ analysis of telomeres in a correlative light and electron microscopy (CLEM) approach. Light microscopy allows live cell imaging and the analysis of telomere distribution in 3D and subsequent transmission electron microscopy (TEM) of the same cells/telomeres provides insights into their ultrastructure. We use APEX2, one of the recently developed tags for EM, and perform conventional 2D imaging as well as electron tomography.  Before coming to Singapore I worked with Thomas Cremer in Munich, Germany, for my diploma and my PhD. I studied the functional nuclear architecture of various cell types, including primary hematopoietic cells. The majority of my work was based on 3D structured illumination microscopy (3D-SIM), one of the recently developed super-resolution fluorescence microscopy techniques. In addition I also performed correlative microscopy comprising live cell imaging, confocal microscopy, 3D-SIM and TEM.

Bhargy SHARMA

My name is Bhargy Sharma. I completed my undergraduate studies (B.Tech.) in Biotechnology from National Institute of Technology Calicut, India. Currently, I am in my final year as a doctoral candidate under supervision of Dr. Konstantin Pervushin at SBS, NTU (Pervushin laboratory). Our lab specializes in study of proteins using nuclear magnetic resonance (NMR) and other biophysical and structural techniques. As part of my work, I use magnetic resonance imaging as tool to visualize protein conjugates in mice and specific biological structures in different organs. Additionally, I study relaxation and diffusion properties of proteins and how they change as a result of chemical modifications.

Margaret PHILIPS

My primary research interest is in using state-of-the-art Solid-state and solution-state NMR techniques to study challenging biological problems like structure and dynamics of soluble and membrane proteins. I am currently working on heme chaperones and protein domains known to form filaments. Using NMR and other biophysical techniques I aim to understand the mechanism of how these human proteins perform their native function.  I am always on a lookout for exciting collaborations involving cutting-edge structural biological techniques to tackle long standing structure/dynamics problems of large macromolecules.

Wen Han TONG

I am Wen Han, currently a PhD student in Ajai Vyas’ laboratory. My current research focuses on neuroendocrinology, parasitology and behavioral ecology. These are motivated by the parasitic protozoan Toxoplasma gondii.  Basic innate defensive responses such as fear of predators are hardwired to preserve the survival of an individual. Nonetheless, Toxoplasma gondii can cause rodents to lose innate aversion to predators. This behavioral change plausibly facilitates trophic transmission of the parasite to its definitive feline host. This is an important event in view of the two-stage life cycle of Toxoplasma gondii which requires predator-prey interactions. I postulate that Toxoplasma gondii hijack the medial amygdala neurons containing neuropeptide arginine vasopressin to reduce innate aversion in rodents. On the clinical biology level, I investigate if Toxoplasma gondii may transmit sexually in humans. This is a crucial question due to increasing evidences correlating Toxoplasmosis and the onset of neuropsychiatric disorders.

Radoslaw Igor OMELIANCZYK

Radoslaw, who is called Radek by everybody, was born in Poland and raised in Germany. After doing his Bachelors in Salzburg, Austria, he moved on to do his Masters at the LMU in Munich. During that time, he was working on cAMP signalling in Trypanosomes, the causative agent of African sleeping sickness. That was all it took to make him fall in love with parasitology. Since watching the highly motile Trypanosomes was too stressful, he moved on to work on Plasmodium falciparum in Peter Preiser’s lab for his PhD. His research focus is on the stevor multigene family, one of the virulence factors expressed by the parasite. During his first two years, he developed a method to force expression of any member of multigene families under their endogenous promoter. Using the generated cell lines, he studied expression patterns within and between multigene families as well their phenotypic diversity.

Grennady WIRJANATA

Dr Grennady Wirjanata (Gren) graduated from Charles Darwin University (CDU; Darwin, Australia) PhD program in 2017 under the supervision of Prof Ric Price and Dr Jutta Marfurt from the CDU Menzies School of Health Research, investigating the potential mechanism behind chloroquine resistance in two of the most important malaria parasites: Plasmodium falciparum and P. vivax. He is currently a post-doctoral research fellow in the School of Biological Sciences, Nanyang Technological University, Singapore, under the supervision of Prof Zbynek Bozdech. His current research project focuses on the identification of molecular target and mode of action of quinoline antimalarials (e.g., amodiaquine & chloroquine) by using multi-omics approaches, including: 1) RNA-Seq and DNA microarray to evaluate gene expression changes upon antimalarial treatment, 2) Cellular Thermal Shift Assay (CETSA) and quantitative proteomics to identify the molecular target (i.e., proteins) and evaluate protein expression changes upon antimalarial treatment, and 3) metabolomics-based screening to study metabolic perturbations caused by antimalarial.

Ameya SINHA

Originally from Bombay, Ameya graduated from Nanyang Technological University, Singapore with a B.Eng in Bioengineering. Having previously worked on the mechanobiology of red blood cells, he transitioned to working with Plasmodium parasites under the collaborative supervision of Peter Dedon at MIT and Peter Preiser at NTU. Ameya’s research at AMR-IRG revolves around deciphering the Plasmodium epitranscriptome as a mechanism of translational control. Leveraging the mass spectrometer as an omnipotent tool, he aims to provide a glimpse of the DNA, RNA and the proteome of the Plasmodium falciparum parasite at a systems-level. When not holed up in the mass spectrometry room or next to the coffee machine, he can be found meandering through the city looking for the best food that Singapore has to offer.

Updated:  15 December 2018/Responsible Officer:  Director RSB/Page Contact:  Webmaster RSB