Andrew "Andy" Chin, PhD, obtained his doctorate at City of Hope, Duarte, California in June 2017. As a graduate student, he trained under Shizhen "Emily" Wang, PhD, studying the inhibitory effects of the plant miRNA miR159 on breast cancer. After graduating, Chin joined the Di Vizio Laboratory at Cedars-Sinai where he is studying the role of large oncosome-encapsulated miRNAs in prostate cancer metastasis. His focus is identifying the molecular pathway by which the prostate cancer miRNA miR-1227 promotes prostate cancer metastasis.
Javier Mariscal Avila, PhD, obtained his doctorate in molecular medicine at the University of Santiago de Compostela in Spain in 2016. There he developed the molecular profiling of circulating tumor cells in lung cancer and the proteomic characterization of extracellular vesicles in invasive endometrial cancer. Mariscal Avila is currently studying the influence of S-acylation, a post-translation modification regulating protein association to membranes, on protein biodistribution and function in extracellular vesicles and their potential as translatable biomarkers in the liquid biopsy of prostate cancer.
Mariana Reis-Sobreiro, PhD, obtained her PhD from the University of Salamanca in Spain. She investigates the functional role of large oncosomes in propagating the amoeboid motility to tumor cells and to the microenvironment.
Tatyana Vagner, PhD, obtained her doctorate in molecular medicine from the University of Auckland, New Zealand. As a graduate student, she worked on development of autoregulatory gene expression systems for gene therapy of neurodegenerative disorders, with a particular focus on Huntington's disease (HD). During her postdoctoral training at Charité - Universitätsmedizin Berlin, Germany, she was involved in a project aimed at characterizing the role of astrocytes in HD pathology. Vagner joined the Di Vizio Lab in 2016. Her current research focuses on large oncosomes (LO) and their potential as a source of circulating biomarkers in prostate cancer. She is characterizing the DNA content of LO in order to determine if genetic information found in circulating LO can be utilized for early detection of metastatic prostate cancer and/or can predict the aggressive features of the disease.
Blandine Victor is a doctoral graduate student from Cedars Sinai's Biomedical Science Program. A former Minority Biomedical Research Support-Research Initiative for Scientific Enhancement participant, Victor received her bachelor of science in biology at Barry University in 2011. After completing her undergraduate studies, she did a one-year post baccalaureate at Emory University where she examined the immune response during mucosal exposure to simian immunodeficiency virus as a pre-engineering program fellow. Victor spent the next two years partaking in three HIV vaccine studies at the Yerkes Vaccine Center in Atlanta. She received her master of science in infectious disease and microbiology at the University of Pittsburgh in 2016. There she studied human and microbial factors contributions to the development of HIV-associated neurocognitive disorder. In the Di Vizio Lab, Victor is investigating the intracellular effects of prostate cancer-derived extracellular vesicles in the migration and invasion of tumor cells in the disruption and reprograming of stroma in local and distal organs.
Mandana Zandian, MD, obtained her MD from the Shahid Beheshti University in Tehran, Iran. She is developing and refining in vitro and in vivo systems for large oncosome characterization.