Current Lab Members

Yi Xu, Ph.D.

Current Position:

Research Associate, Perinatal Immunobiology Unit, Wayne State University School of Medicine, Hutzel Women's Hospital, 3990 John R, 4 Brush North, Detroit, MI 48201

Previous Positions:

Health Science Specialist, VAMC, Detroit, MI (2004-2006)
Contract Scientist, Inflammation molecular technology, Pfizer, Inc, Ann Arbor, MI (2003-2004)
Research Associate, Dr. Mark Kelley's lab, Wells Center for pediatric research, Cancer Institute (1994-2003)

Education:

Ph.D.  in Molecular Biology, Purdue University, West Lafayette, IN (1994)
Bachelor of Science (B.Sc.) in Biochemistry, Nanjing University, China (1986)

Research Interests:

My current project focuses on immunity at maternal-fetal interface.

 

Marcia Arenas-Hernandez, M.Sc.

Current Position:

Ph.D. Candidate in Molecular Biomedicine/Senior Research Assistant, Gomez-Lopez Laboratory, Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, C.S. Mott Center for Human Growth and Development, Wayne State University, Detroit, MI, 48201

Previous Positions:

Graduate Student in Reproductive Biology. Department of Nutrition Research. Instituto Nacional de Perinatología Isidro Espinosa de los Reyes.  Mexico City. Mexico (November 2011-December 2012), Advisor: Dr. Rodrigo Vega-Sanchez.

Education:

Masters of Science (M.Sc.) in Biomedicine and Molecular Biotechnology. Escuela Nacional de Ciencias Biológicas, Instituto Politécnico Nacional. Mexico City. Mexico (2013).

Bachelor of Science (B.Sc.) in Chemistry, Bacteriology and Parasitology. Escuela Nacional de Ciencias Biológicas, Instituto Politécnico Nacional. Mexico City. Mexico (2009).

Research Interests:

I am currently studying the expression and epigenetic changes in mice during normal pregnancy and the diseases associated with these changes. In addition, I am interested in studying the interaction of paternal antigens in murine models. I enjoy participating in different projects that are related to biomedicine and reproductive immunology for preventing preterm birth.

 

Valeria Garcia-Flores, M.Sc.

Current Position:

Ph.D. Candidate in Genetics and Molecular Biology/Research Assistant, Gomez-Lopez Laboratory, Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, C.S. Mott Center for Human Growth and Development, Wayne State University, Detroit, MI, 48201

Previous Positions:

Junior Resercher in Endometrial Receptivity. Research and Molecular Diagnostic Laboratory, Ingenes. Mexico City. Mexico (May 2012-September 2015).

Education:

Masters of Science (M.Sc.) in Molecular Biology and Genetics. at The Center for Research and Advanced Studies (CINVESTAV) Mexico City, Mexico (2013).

Bachelor of Science (B.Sc.) in Chemistry, Bacteriology and Parasitology. Escuela Nacional de Ciencias Biológicas, Instituto Politécnico Nacional. Mexico City. Mexico (2009).

Research Interest:

I am studying the molecular and cellular mechanisms that are involved in late pregnancy and preterm birth.

 

Violeta Castro-Leyva, Ph.D.

Current Position:

Postdoctoral Fellow, Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, School of Medicine Wayne State University, C.S. Mott Center for Human Growth and Development, Detroit, MI, 48201

Previous positions:

Postdoctoral Fellow, Department of Biochemistry, School of Medicine, National Autonomous University of Mexico at Scientific Linking Unit in National Institute of Genomic Medicine. Mexico City, Mexico (2016-2017).

Education:

Ph.D. in Chemical-Biological Sciences. National School of Biological Sciences - National Polytechnic Institute, Mexico City, Mexico (2012-2015).

M.Sc. in Chemical-Biological Sciences. National School of Biological Sciences - National Polytechnic Institute, Mexico City, Mexico (2010-2011).

Chemist Bacteriologist Parasitologist. National School of Biological Sciences - National Polytechnic Institute, Mexico City, Mexico (2003-2008).

Research Interests:

I am currently interested to investigate the innate immune mechanisms related to sterile intra-amniotic inflammation. I am also interested in expanding my knowledge on Perinatal Immunobiology and the epigenetic mechanisms related to it.

 

Yaozhu Leng, M.Sc.

Current Position:

Research Assistant, Perinatal Immunobiology Unit, Wayne State University School of Medicine, Hutzel Women's Hospital, 3990 John R, 4 Brush North, Detroit, MI, 48201
 

Previous Positions:

Technique assistance, project focus on Neuron induction and 3D culture, Wayne state university, Detroit,  MI, USA (2015-2016)

Graduate student, project focus on rapid proteolysis of fibronectin in decellularized extracellular matrices formed in high glucose environments, Illinois institute of Technology, Chicago, IL, USA (2014-2015)

Technological Development Assistant, Zhongsheng Pharmacy, Zhuhai, China (2012)

Education:

Masters of Science (M.Sc.) in Biological Engineering, Illinois Institute of Technology, Chicago, IL, USA (2015)
Bachelor of Science (B.Sc.) in Biotechnology, Beijing Normal University, Zhuhai, China (2012)

Research Interests:

My current project focuses on the cellular immune response in the amniotic fluid and chorioamniotic membranes. 

 

Derek Miller, B.Sc.

Current Position:

Master's student in Immunology & Microbiology/Research Assistant, Perinatal Immunobiology Unit, Wayne State University School of Medicine, Hutzel Women's Hospital, 3990 John R, 4 Brush North, Detroit, MI, 48201

Previous Positions:

Laboratory Assistant, Department of Natural Sciences, Lawrence Technological University

Education:

Bachelor of Science (B.Sc.) in Chemical Biology, Lawrence Technological University, Southfield, MI  (2014)

Research Interests:

My past research was focused on tissue engineering with human fibroblast cells, which utilized cell culture techniques as well as fluorescent staining and confocal microscopy. I am interested in expanding my knowledge of cell biology.

 

George Schwenkel, B.Sc.

Current Position:

Laboratory Coordinator. Gomez-Lopez Laboratory, Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, C.S. Mott Center for Human Growth and Development, Wayne State University, Detroit, MI, 48201

Previous Position:

Research Assistant. Gomez-Lopez Laboratory, Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, C.S. Mott Center for Human Growth and Development, Wayne State University, Detroit, MI, 48201

Education:

Bachelor of Science (B.Sc.) in Human Biology. Michigan State University, East Lansing, MI, USA (2013)

Research Interests:

I am interested in studying immunology, molecular biology, and cell-free fetal DNA.

 

Volunteers

Nabila Khan

Current Position: 

Master's Student in Basic Medical Sciences/Graduate Volunteer, Gomez-Lopez Laboratory, Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, C.S. Mott Center for Human Growth and Development, Wayne State University, Detroit, MI, 48201

Education:

Bachelor of Science (B. Sc.)  in Genomics and Molecular Genetics, Michigan State University, East Lansing, MI, 48825 (2016)

Research Interests:

I am interested in studying the causes of preterm labor and the current mechanisms that prevent this phenomenon. Furthermore, I am interested in preventative methods that may reduce this problem and allow for a full term delivery.

 

Hana Kallabat

Current Position: 

Undergraduate Volunteer, Gomez-Lopez Laboratory, Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, C.S. Mott Center for Human Growth and Development, Wayne State University, Detroit, MI, 48201

Education:

Studies Biology at Wayne State University- Class of 2018

Pre-Med Student

Research Interests:

I am interested in the effects of maternal age and inflammatory responses in preterm birth.

Other interests:

 I enjoy cooking, reading, traveling and volunteering throughout my community. 

 

Sabrina Gregor 

Current Position:

Undergraduate Volunteer, Gomez-Lopez Laboratory, Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, C.S. Mott Center for Human Growth and Development, Wayne State University, Detroit, MI, 48201

Education:

Studies Biology at Wayne State University with a minor in Health Psychology- Class of 2019

Pre-Med Student 

Research Interests:

I am interested in the cellular mechanisms that are involved in preterm birth.

Other Interests:

I enjoy boating, traveling, and volunteering on campus and around my community.