Lawrence M. Valles
Laboratory Manager, Woo and Liau Groups
Larry Valles came to Harvard as lab manager in 2011. His previous work experience comes from Massachusetts General Hospital in the molecular biology department as the Assistant Operations Director. Prior to that Larry was at Boston University for 10 years as laboratory manager for the chairman of the biology department and a facilities administrator for the Life Sciences and Engineering building.
Yuka Amako, Ph.D.
Uehara Memorial Foundation Postdoctoral Fellowship
Murata Overseas Scholarship
Yuka did her undergraduate studies at Chiba University in Japan and obtained a Ph.D. in Pharmaceutical Sciences at the same university under the supervision of Prof. Atsushi Nishida, where she focused on organic chemistry. Her previous research experiences included development of new methodologies using nickel-catalyzed hydrocyanation of allenes. After her graduate studies, she was interested in chemical biology and joined the Woo lab to study the interaction of small molecule in proteome in April 2017.
Praveen Kokkonda, Ph.D.
Praveen Kokkonda obtained his M.S. in Organic Chemistry from Osmania University in 2006. He worked as a Senior Chemist at GVK Bio Sciences Pvt. Ltd, Hyderabad from 2006-2009. He obtained a Ph.D. in Organic chemistry under the supervision of Prof. Rodrigo Andrade at Temple University in 2017. His research focus was on the total synthesis of Strychnos and Aspidospermatan indole alkaloids.
Chia Fu Chang, Ph.D.
Erin Heim, Ph.D.
Ph.D. in Genetics from Yale University
Erin received a B.S. from the University of Florida in Biochemistry before attending graduate school at Yale University to study Genetics. At Yale she worked under Dr. Daniel DiMaio constructing protein libraries to screen for various functions including blocking HPV infection, activating receptors without known ligands, and isolating ultra-simple proteins with oncogenic activity to better understand how simplicity in a cell can have major consequences in biology. Her scientific motivations come from imagining creative solutions to biological problems and then building the tools to address these problems. As a postdoctoral researcher in the Woo lab, Erin will be developing cell based assays to screen for novel protein-protein interactions and will be working towards understanding and elucidating the cell-wide protein-protein interactome.
Chanat Jay Aonbangkhen, Ph.D.
I was born and raised in Thailand where I did my undergraduate study majoring in chemistry. I became interested in chemical biology and conducted research under supervision of Dr. Pitak Chuawong at Kasetsart University to develop an acid-cleavable probe to purify specific tRNA. In 2013, I began working on Ph.D research under Dr. David Chenoweth in the Department of Chemistry and Dr. Michael Lampson’s in the Department of Biology, both at the University of Pennsylvania. My project was to develop light-activated chemical inducers of protein dimerization to study protein-protein interactions in living cells. In 2018, I joined Dr. Christina Woo’s lab as a postdoctoral fellow. In my free time, I like reading about science and technologies, and how to cure cancers. I am also interested in the chemistry of cooking and traveling around the world.
BBS Graduate Student
Daniel is a second-year PhD student in the Biological and Biomedical Sciences (BBS) program at Harvard. His previous research experience involved studying the role of SUMOylation on Influenza virus infection in the lab of Dr. Germán-Rosas Acosta at The University of Texas at El Paso. He also worked on the crystallization of nuclear pore associated proteins in the lab of Dr. Günter Blobel over the 2014 and 2015 summers at The Rockefeller University as part of the HHMI EXROP and Capstone programs. In 2016, Daniel joined the Woo lab to develop new tools to study glycosylation and probe their functions.
CCB Graduate Student
Hope is a graduate student in the Chemistry and Chemical Biology PhD program. She received a BS from MIT with majors in Chemistry and Biology and minors in Economics and History. While at MIT, she studied the metal-binding and redox properties of the human immune protein S100A15 in the laboratory of Dr. Elizabeth Nolan. She joined the Woo lab in 2016 to study small molecule-protein interactions.
MCO Graduate student
Paul is a graduate student in the Molecules, Cells & Organisms PhD program. He received his BS from MIT in Biology, with minors in Chemistry and Music. While at MIT, he trained in the labs of Laurie Boyer, Jean-Francois Hamel, and Jing-Ke Weng working on various projects in molecular and cellular biology. Paul joins the Woo lab in 2017 to study the role of post-translational modifications in cellular function.
CCB Graduate Student
Hung-Yi obtained his BS and MS degree in National Taiwan University, Taiwan, in Prof. Hung-Wen Li's lab with focus on protein-protein interaction in E coli DNA homologous recombination using single-molecule techniques. He then joined Prof. Christina Woo's lab in Harvard University, focusing on chemical proteomics.
CCB Graduate Student
Alex is an aspiring young graduate student in the Chemistry and Chemical Biology PhD Program. He received his BS in Chemistry from Indiana University, where he trained in the lab of Dr. Michael VanNieuwenhze synthesizing dynamic fluorescent probes. He joined the Woo lab in 2017 to conquer the mighty diazirine and improve the methods used to study small molecule-protein interactions.
CCB Graduate Student
Jinxu Gao received her MSc in Chemistry at Uppsala University in Sweden. Her previous research experience included synthesis and characterization of novel drug carriers targeted to cancer cells and the speciation of heavy metals in ecosystems using HPLC-ICPMS. She is currently undertaking research on chemical glycoproteomics and interaction between small molecules and proteome using mass spectrometry.
Maria is a junior at Harvard College pursuing a joint concentration in Chemistry-Biomedical Engineering. She has previously worked in the Joshi Lab at the Wyss Institute and in the D'Alessio Lab in the Oncology Biotherapeutics Department at the Novartis Institutes for Biomedical Research (NIBR). Maria is a student facilitator for Life Sciences 1a, and she participates in various music and cultural groups on campus.
Jeff Naftaly is a junior at the College concentrating in Chemical and Physical Biology with a Secondary in Social Anthropology. He has previously worked at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute’s Darrin Freshwater Laboratory studying the genome of zooplankton. Jeff joined the Woo lab in January 2017 to study the effects of glycosylation on proteins. In his free time Jeff enjoys playing Ultimate Frisbee.
Erik Owen is an undergraduate at Harvard College concentrating in Chemical and Physical Biology. His previous research experience includes his work on transcription factor PU.1 at Dr. Bruce Torbett’s laboratory at the Scripps Research Institute and a summer characterizing non-model microorganisms at Synthetic Genomics Inc. In 2016, he developed an initial assay to quantify protein delivery efficiency to cells in the laboratory of Professor David R. Liu at Harvard. In September 2016, Erik joined the Woo Lab to study the effects of glycosylation on the regulation of signaling.
I am a first year prospective chemical and physical and physical biology concentrator. I joined the lab in January 2018 with support from the IQSS to study small molecule-mediated protein interactions. Outside the lab, I play in the HRO and write for the HPR.
Adelphe Mfuh, Ph.D.
Ph.D. University of Texas at San Antonio
Adelphe was born in Lobe Estate in the South West Region of the Republic of Cameroon. He did his undergraduate studies at the University of Buea Cameroon, before moving to Las Vegas NM, at New Mexico Highlands University, where he obtained an MS in Applied Chemistry 2007. In 2012, he obtained a Ph. D in Organic Chemistry under the supervision of Prof. George Negrete at University of Texas at San Antonio. After his graduate studies, he was attracted to the group of Prof. Larionov Oleg at UTSA, where he had the opportunity to work on a number of projects including the total synthesis of the trichodermamide family of secondary metabolites, metal-free borylation of haloranes and heterocyclic N-oxide functionalization. In August 2016, he joined the Woo group to study the interactions of small molecules within the context of the cellular proteome.
Shunying Liu, Ph.D.