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Anisa Driscoll

I work at University of Michigan, Frankel Cardiovascular Center as a clinical research coordinator for a biorepository called the Cardiovascular Health Improvement Project (CHIP). We mainly focus on collection of DNA, plasma, serum, aortic tissue, and a clinical database of medical and family history information. Each sample gets genome wide sequencing (GWAS) which we're currently in the process of developing a schema on how to return research level genetic results to patients that could impact their clinical care. Thanks to my previous (Hashemi laboratory) and current experiences, I encompass over five years of research execution and coordination experience ranging from project implementation, biospecimen management, data management and quality control, staff training and supervision, and collaboration as well as financial planning and forecasting.

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Audrey Sulkanen

Audrey Sulkanen was an undergraduate in the Hashemi Lab at Wayne State. Now she works for Dr. Liu at UC Davis pursuing her graduate degree.

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Kevin Wood

Kevin Wood was an undergraduate student with Dr. Hashemi at UNC, and was lab manager at Wayne State for two years. He received his masters degree in data science and business analytics From UNC Charlotte. He now works as the lead data analyst at the American Academy of Ophthalmology in San Francisco.

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Bruce Mousseau

Bruce graduated from the University of South Carolina in 2016 with a B.S. in Chemistry and is now an Analytical Chemistry graduate student in the Amanda Hummon lab at the University of Notre Dame. While a member of the Hashemi Lab, his research focused primarily on in vivo platforms for trace metal analysis. Now at Notre Dame, Bruce is working with a class of microfluidic devices that utilize on-chip cell culture of THLE-3 hepatocytes to better mimic structural and functional purpose of in vivo tissues in organs for pharmacological and physiological studies. In his free time, Bruce enjoys watching sports or exercising with his dog. 

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Thushani Siriwardhane

Thushani Siriwardhane graduated with her PhD from the University of South Carolina in 2017. She is now a postdoctoral fellow with Dr. Papautsky at the University of Illinois Chicago.

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Pavithra Pathriathna

Pavithra Pathriathna graduated with her PhD from Wayne State in 2016. She is now a postdoctoral fellow with Dr. Amemiya at the University of Pittsburgh.

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Shirley Yang

Shirley graduated with her PhD from Wayne State in 2016. Shirley joined Dr. Chuck Henry’s lab in Colorado State University for postdoc and her research was on microfluidic paper-based analytical devices for virus detection. Shirley is now a research scientist working on clinical validation studies in Vibrant America, LLC, CA

Srimal Samaranayake

Srimal received a bachelor’s of science in chemistry from the University of Peradeniya, Sri Lanka. He joined the lab 2012 and was lucky enough to migrate from Wayne State to USC. Srimal developed a method to simultaneously measure serotonin and histamine in vivo using FSCV and now explores how these two neurotransmitters regulate each other in the brain. He works with Dr. Rosemary Booze to study how neurotransmission is altered during HIV. In addition, in a collaboration with Dr. Pavel Ortinski, he measures dopamine to explore individual differences in drug-driven motivation. Srimal is the lab artist, creating beautiful journal covers and lab photographs. He thinks he will be leaving us soon for an amazing post-doc opportunity. Unfortunately, we cannot allow that to happen until we find ourselves a replacement (aka never).​

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Aya Abdullah

Aya attended the American University of Sharjah, UAE where she obtained a bachelors of science in chemistry and bachelors of science in chemical engineering. In the Hashemi Lab she developed methods for determining ambient levels of serotonin across brain circuitry along with researching how serotonin differs across various brain regions and why. Aya now works with Dr. Bhavik Patel at the University of Brighton, UK.

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Rhiannon Robke

Rhiannon received her bachelors of science in biology from Grand Valley State University, Michigan and was a summer research student with Dr. Hashemi at Wayne State University. In 2018, Rhiannon obtained her master’s in analytical chemistry at the University of South Carolina. Rhiannon was awarded an Academic Medical Center PhD Scholarship and is now pursuing her PhD with Dr. Ingo Willuhn at the Netherlands Institute for Neuroscience.

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Rachel Saylor

Rachel Saylor graduated with a B.S. in Chemistry from Wittenberg University and received her Ph.D. from the University of Kansas as part of the Susan Lunte research group.  After her graduation, Rachel was a postdoctoral scholar at UofSC in the Hashemi lab where she worked on a collaborative project with Dr. Thorsten Lau at the Hector Institute for Translation Brain Research.  Rachel is now a visiting Assistant Professor of Analytical Chemistry at Oberlin College and Conservatory.

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Nico Schnieder

Nico is a senior biochemistry and neuroscience undergraduate at UofSC. He works under Shane’s guidance on Shane’s serotonin models and any other projects Shane may be working on. As a medical school prospect, Nico is highly interested in clinical applications of research, particularly those pertaining to neurological diseases and disorders. When he’s not stressing over med school applications, Nico can be found playing videogames, saxophone, tennis, singing, running, or sleeping.

Aspasia Amiridis

Aspa is a senior biochemistry and molecular biology major in the USC Honors College. She has been a member of the Hashemi lab since 2017. Aspa is currently working on a project under the guidance of Jordan Holmes, where she is characterizing a copper-specific CFM that can be used for on-site trace metal analysis. After she finishes her B.S. at USC, Aspa plans to attend graduate school to obtain a Ph.D. in biochemistry. In her free time, Aspa enjoys going to concerts, playing with her kitten Milo, and attending USC soccer games. Go Gamecocks!

Alyssa West

Alyssa attended University of West Florida where she obtained a bachelor of science in chemistry. In the Hashemi Lab, Alyssa focused on the role of serotonin in autism spectrum disorder using genetic mouse models and environmental risk factor exposures. She graduated with her PhD in August 2019 and is currenty a postdoc in Dr. Sara Jones' lab at Wake Forest University. She currently spends all her free time counseling her dog who is afraid of his own reflection, storms, water, bags, and anything new or remotely unfamiliar.

Damion Graham

Damion worked as the original content creator for the Hashemi Lab website. He also assisted in lab making electrodes and assisting with other duties. Damion is currently enrolled at the University of South Carolina for his Bachelors in Integrated Information of Technology. Damion is interested in building and designing websites and applications based on user research findings. In his free time Damion likes to go on hiking trails. When he is not going on trails he is binge watching Netflix and Hulu. Last but not least in his free time he likes to play with and walk his pet guinea pig Oliver.

Deanna Keen

Deanna worked in the Hashemi Lab as an undergraduate researcher under the guidance of Jordan Holmes and Rachel Saylor. She optimized the sensitivity of serotonin measurements at carbon fiber microelectrodes using different surface modifications. She graduated from the University of South Carolina with her B.S. in chemistry and B.A. in Chinese studies in May 2019. She will be starting her MD/PhD at the University of Chicago in 2020. She has a passion for travel and spent 6 months studying abroad in Beijing. In her spare time, You can catch her training to run a marathon or eating to refuel for another workout.

Jordan Holmes

Jordan received her bachelor of science in Chemistry from Florida State University. #gonoles! In the Hashemi Lab, Jordan developed a variety of sensors for detecting environmental and biological species (i.e. glutamate, Cu(II)). She also developed FSCV for serotonin measurements in serotonin neurons derived from stem cells.  She graduated from Parry's lab in December 2019 and is currently a postdoc in Dr. Samira Musah's lab at Duke University. Her research areas include stem cell biology, genome engineering, and organ-on-a-chip. As a Florida native, Jordan likes to lay by the pool in her free time and despises all things cold.

Melinda Hersey

Melinda received her bachelors of science in biochemistry with minors in biology and exercise sport science from Elon University. She graduated from the integrated biomedical science PhD program at the University of South Carolina in spring 2020. In both the Hashemi and Reagan Labs, she explored the role of serotonin in comorbid obesity and depression using both microdialysis and fast-scan cyclic voltammetry. She is currently a postdoc at the National Institute of Drug Abuse. Melinda enjoys eating chocolate, working out, and being outside.

Aditya Vasa

Aditya worked as an undergraduate researcher in the Hashemi Lab under the guidance of Anna Marie Buchanan and Yangguang Ou. He studied behavioral changes in animal models of neurodegenerative diseases and also assisted in carbon modifications for detecting new analytes (i.e. histamine). He graduated with a B.S. in chemistry and a minor in biology in May 2020. He plans to gain some experience as a chemist/medical lab scientist before applying to med school in Fall of 2021.

Jordan "JoJo" Cook

JoJo worked as an undergraduate researcher in the Hashemi Lab under the guidance of Colby Witt and Yangguang Ou. She studied oscillatory behavior of ambient serotonin concentrations in the hippocampus using fast scan controlled adsorption voltammetry. JoJo graduated with her B.S. in chemistry with a minor in neuroscience in May 2020. She is currently working as a math and science tutor at Tuteledge and plans to apply to graduate school in neuroscience in Fall of 2021.

Yangguang (O.U.) Ou

O.U. graduated with a B.Sc in Chemistry and biochemistry from Florida State University in 2011 and earned her Ph.D. in analytical chemistry from the University of Pittsburgh in 2017, working with Dr. Steve Weber. Her main intellectual goals are two-fold: 1) to develop new bioanalytical techniques for in vivo neurochemical sensing with high spatiotemporal resolution, and 2) to understand how neurochemical systems are altered in individuals suffering from psychiatric illnesses. To pursue these goals, she joined the Hashemi Lab in Jan 2018 and is spearheading a project that studies ambient oscillations in ambient serotonin concentrations and different eletrode modifications for histamine detection. In her free time, she enjoys travel, Pure Barre, and exploring restaurants in every city she visits, including her current home of Columbia, SC. She moved to Burlington, VT in August 2020 to start her own lab at the University of Vermont. 

Shane Berger

Shane received his B.S. in chemistry from Penn State University in 2015, and his PhD in Chemistry from the University of South Carolina in December 2020.  Shane is interested in the link between pesticide exposure and developing depression later in life.  As serotonin disruption is thought to be a key player in depression, Shane is investigating how pesticide exposure affects basal and evoked serotonin levels. He is currently a Scientist IV - Analytical Methods with Boehringer Ingelheim Animal Health in New Jersey. He is responsible for developing, validating, and transferring robust analytical methods to support testing of APIs, excipients, raw materials, and finished products related to marketed/commercial global pharmaceutical products of Boehringer Ingelheim Animal Health. In his free time, Shane loves spending time in the great outdoors while hiking, fishing, and biking.

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Navid Tavakoli

Navid is a premedical undergraduate student at the University of South Carolina planning on majoring in biological sciences and minoring in statistics. He is from Columbia, SC and in addition to receiving his High School Diploma, he received an International Baccalaureate Diploma from the International Baccalaureate Program. Navid is the democratically elected Hashemi Lab President and is involved in a variety of projects. Outside the lab Navid, enjoys playing ultimate frisbee and soccer and has been a recreational boys soccer coach for the past 5 years. Navid also really likes chicken tenders.

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Lauren Honan

Lauren worked in the Hashemi Lab as an undergraduate researcher for four years under the guidance of Yangguang Ou and Colby Witt. She assisted on projects with aims to improve the sensitivity and stability of ambient serotonin detection. Lauren earned her B.S. from the University of South Carolina in Biochemistry & Molecular Biology and a minor in French in May 2021. Some of her most notable accomplishments at USC include receiving a Magellan Scholar Award, giving multiple poster and oral presentations at Pittcon and Discover USC, and graduating with Leadership Distinction in Research. She will be beginning her PhD work in Integrated Biomedical Sciences in a Physiology & Pharmacology Discipline at the University of Texas Health Science Center at San Antonio in August 2021. Outside of lab, Lauren enjoys biking and spending time with her two german shepherds.

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Fariha Islam

Fariha is a rising senior at the University of South Carolina studying Biochemistry & Molecular Biology with a minor in Business Administration. She has been a member of the lab since her freshman year and has worked on projects supported by the SCHC SURF Grant and Magellan Scholar Award. After graduation, she plans to pursue a medical degree so that she can advocate for communities who face health disparities. When she’s not conducting experiments, you can find her baking desserts for days or exploring her favorite cities.

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Ian Bain

Ian is a senior undergraduate student studying chemistry and math at the University of South Carolina. He is interested in the role of histamine in depression and can usually be found slicing many, many brains. After graduation, he plans to attend graduate school to obtain a Ph.D. in analytical chemistry. Ian was recently named a Barry M. Goldwater scholar, an award given to students pursuing careers in research. In his free time, he enjoys gardening, fencing, eating grapefruit, and frequently washing his hands.

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Courtney Heath

Courtney worked as an undergraduate researcher in the Hashemi Lab under the guidance of Jordan Holmes, Yangguang Ou, and Colby Witt. She worked on a project exploring amino acid fouling to increase sensitivity to serotonin using fast scan cyclic voltammetry. She plans to graduate with a B.S. in biochemistry and molecular biology with a minor in Spanish in May 2022. She hopes to continue in neuroscience and/or toxicological research while pursuing a PhD after graduating. 

Aron Lajko

Aron Lajko is currently a first year Bioengineering Undergraduate at Imperial College London. As part of the UROP programme he will be working on how motor activity in animals is affected by emotional states. He likes thinking about combining empathy with evidence, and breaking the fourth wall. Rowing and running are his favorite sports.