People

Emrah Altindis, PhD

Principal Investigator

Dr. Emrah Altındiş is an Assistant Professor at Boston College Biology Department and an adjunct faculty member of Joslin Diabetes Center (affiliated with Harvard Medical School). His research is focused on (i) functional characterization of viral hormones and (ii) potential role of gut microbiome on onset of Type 1 Diabetes autoimmunity. Dr. Altindis’ primary goal and passion is to make significant contributions to our understanding on host and microbe interactions within the context of viral hormones and determine their role in human health and disease.

Email me: altindis@bc.edu

Martina Chrudinova, PhD

Post Doctoral fellow

Dr. Chrudinova received her Bachelor’s and Master’s degrees in Biochemistry from Charles University in Prague, Czech Republic. She performed her PhD at IOCB AS CR and graduated in 2019. Her PhD research focused on synthesis and characterization of analogs of insulin and insulin-like growth factors (IGF-1 and IGF-2). Upon joining the Altindis Lab in July 2019 for her postdoctoral training, Dr. Chrudinova has begun working on characterization of recently newly discovered viral insulin-like peptides and their potential role in human disease.

Email me: Martina.Chrudinova@bc.edu

Aurelien Chuard, PhD

Post Doctoral fellow

Dr. Chuard received his Bachelor’s degree and Master’s degree (microbiology & immunology) from Bordeaux University (France). During his Ph.D. at the National Institute of Agronomics Research in Tours (France), he has worked on molecular aspects involved in the horizontal transmission of the avian Marek’s Disease Virus. In 2021, he joined Altindis lab with his molecular virologist background to work on Iridioviruses to identify and characterize the role of Viral-Insulin-Like-Peptides (VILPs) during the viral cycle and their implication on insulin-related cell signaling.

Email me: chuard@bc.edu

Khyati Girdhar, PhD

Post Doctoral fellow

Dr. Girdhar received her MSc. in Chemistry National institute of Technology (NIT) Jalandhar, India. She started her Ph.D. in Indian institute of Technology (IIT) Mandi, India in the field of medicinal chemistry where she designed a small molecule glucagon-like peptide-1 receptor (GLP-1R) agonist for the treatment of diabetes. She also owns a patent for designing that molecule. After completing her Ph.D she joined as postdoctoral fellow in University of Michigan for several months. She joined the Altindis lab in October 2020 and is working in the field of autoimmune diseases like type 1 diabetes and Celiac disease exploring the role of the gut microbiome in the onset of autoimmunity. She has extensive experience in several in-vitro experiments, in-vivo handling and ex-vivoexperiments. She has also experience in the field of molecular biology and organic synthesis.

Email me: girdhar@bc.edu

Audrey  Randall

Graduate Student

Audrey received her Bachelor’s degree in microbiology from the University of Maryland – College Park. After working as a student technician at the US Department of Agriculture and the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases she decided to pursue a PhD in biology at Boston College. She joined the Altindis lab in April 2022 and is now studying the roles of Parabacteriodes distasonis in autoimmune disease onset.

Email me: randalau@bc.edu

Dogus Dogru, MSc

Graduate Student

Computational biologist with an experimental biology background. Currently a graduate student in Altindis lab at Boston College.

Email me: dogru@bc.edu

Undergraduate Researchers

Typhania Zanou

Undergraduate Research Assistant

Typhania is an undergraduate Biochemistry major who aspires to pursue a career in the research of autoimmune diseases such as atopic dermatitis. She joined the lab in the fall of 2020 and is currently working with Dr. Khyati Girdhar. She is a council member of Boston College’s anti-racism club, FACES.

Email me: zanou@bc.edu

Khadija Danazumi

Undergraduate Research Assistant

Khadija Danazumi is a biochemistry major and pre-medical student in the class of 2023. She started working in the Altindis lab in Summer 2021, aiding Dr. Aurelien Chuard with his research on “Iridoviruses to find and define the role of Viral-Insulin-Like-Peptides (VILPs) during the viral cycle, as well as its implications for insulin-related cell signaling”. She is a sexual assault advocate, a disability advocate, a mentor, and a tutor in addition to working in the laboratory.

Email me: danazumi@bc.edu

Kaitlin Reiners

Undergraduate Research Assistant

Kaitlin is currently a junior at Boston College majoring in biology. She joined the lab in summer 2021 and assists Dr. Aurelien Chuard with his research. Kailtin is also involved in BC Full Swing and Appa Volunteers. Kaitlin hopes to go on to medical school after Boston College.

Email me: reinerka@bc.edu

Yena Sung

Undergraduate Research Assistant

Yena is an undergraduate biology major from Albany, New York. She joined the Altindis lab in the fall of 2021 and is working on studying the role of the gut microbiome in Celiac’s disease with mentor Dr. Khyati Girdhar. Yena is also involved with FACES, Boston College’s anti racism club. After graduation, she hopes to pursue a career in research.

Email me: sungye@bc.edu

Jaewon Oh

Undergraduate Research Assistant

Jaewon Oh is an undergraduate biology major on the premedical track. He joined the lab in the Spring of 2021 and works with Dr. Khyati Girdhar. Outside of the lab, Jaewon volunteers as a Big Brother Big Sister Mentor and sings Boston College’s A Cappella group The Heightsmen.

Email me: jaewon.oh@bc.edu

Julianne Cutone

Undergraduate Research Assistant

Julianne Cutone is an undergraduate biology major and currently a freshman at Boston College. She joined the Altindis lab in the fall of 2020 and continues to assist with Martina Chrudinova’s research. Outside of the lab, she enjoys playing tennis and running. After graduation, she hopes to pursue a career in research.

Email me: cutonej@bc.edu

Matt Mojares

Undergraduate Research Assistant

Matt Mojares is an undergraduate biology major on the premedical track with a minor in Global Public Health and the Common Good. He joined Altindis Lab in spring of 2021 and works with Dr. Martina Chrudinova. Outside of the lab, Matt serves as a captain of Boston College’s priemer Latin dance team, Fuego del Corazón.

Email me: mojaresm@bc.edu

Former Postdocs

Qian Huang, PhD (2018-2020)

Michael Rak, PhD (2018-2019)

Former Undergraduate Researchers

Amol Raisingani (2019-2022)

Ruixi Huang (2019-2022)

Maximilian Figura (2019-2022)

Kaan Sevgi (2019-2022)

Nathan Ji (2020-2022)

Riley Aquilano (2020-2022)

Amaya Powis (2019-2021)

Robert Reiners (2020-2021)

Scott Hsu (2019-2021)

Tu Tran (2019-2021)

Claudia Brady (2019-2020)

Yasmine Nousari (2019 Summer)

Aparna Naik (2019 Summer)

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