current lab members

Mark von Zastrow, Md/PhD

Mark grew up in the northeastern US, primarily in New York state, but he has called California home for a long time. Mark is a cell biologist and psychiatrist who is fascinated by how the brain works, and by how drugs work on the brain. In his free time, he works on old lab equipment and enjoys hiking, kayaking, biking and reading trashy crime novels.

Aaron Marley

Aaron was born and raised in California. His research interests focus on signaling in the primary cilia. He is particularly interested in identifying and understanding the roles of novel proteins that regulate the trafficking and/or function of ciliary GPCRs. Outside of lab, Aaron enjoys traveling and camping with his family. 

Aliza Ehrlich, PhD

Aliza grew up in south Florida but has lived throughout the world in pursuing scientific adventures. Her scientific interests include receptor biology, the interplay between GPCR signaling and trafficking, and how GPCRs signal in the primary cilium of neurons. Aliza also enjoys running, cycling, cooking, baking and getting in long hours of microscopy analysis - while the dough is rising and goodies are baking.

Léa Ripoll, PhD

Léa hails from Paris, France where she got her bachelor's, master's, and PhD from the Curie Institute. She is studying the localization, trafficking, and signaling of adenylyl cyclases in neurons. Outside of lab, Léa likes reading, running, and dancing ballet. 

Emily Blythe, PhD

Emily is from Michigan and she got her PhD from Caltech in Biochemisty and Molecular Biophysics. She is studying how trafficking of GPCRs dictates downstream signaling. Outside of lab, Emily likes sewing clothes, quilting, and reading. 

Nicole Fisher, PhD

Nicole grew up in Ohio and earned her Ph.D. in Pharmacology from Vanderbilt University. Nicole is interested in the signaling of Gi/o coupled receptors from internal compartments. In her free time, Nicole enjoys trying out new restaurants, attending concerts and hiking in the Bay Area with her dog. 

Rita Fagan, PhD

Rita is from Massachusetts, where she did her undergraduate and graduate degrees in Neuroscience and Neurobiology at the University of Massachusetts. In the lab she is working on understanding the trafficking and signaling of dopamine receptors in neuronal primary cilia. In her free time, Rita enjoys taking pottery classes, seeing live music, and exploring San Francisco. 

Jenny He, PhD

Jenny went to Pomona College for undergrad and UCSD for her PhD in Biology. She is studying the diversity of GPCRs in neurons and their signaling patterns. When not in the lab, you can usually find Jenny camping and rock climbing, and snuggling her dog. 

Joy Li

Joy grew up in China and did technology marketing prior to transitioning to science. She is a PhD candidate in the Tetrad program and in the von Zastrow lab she studies ligand-selective GPCR activities. Outside of lab, she enjoys biking, cooking, and playing with family. 

Brian Wysolmerksi

Brian is from New Haven, Connecticut. He did his Master's degree at Cambridge University in Biology and he is currently a PhD student in the Tetrad graduate program. In the lab, he studies G protein trafficking and signaling. Outside of lab, he likes to ski, hike, and travel.

Luis Santiago

Luis grew up in Los Angeles and practiced computational modeling at CSU Northridge. He worked at Labcorp Drug Development before joining the UCSF Pharmaceutical Sciences and Pharmacogenomics program as a PhD student. Besides doing science, Luis also loves cooking and baking. His latest creation was chocoflan!

Yenni Li

Yenni is from Mexico, and she is a Master's student at San Francisco State University. In the lab, she is studying the localization of GPR88 to cilia in different regions of the mouse brain. In her free time, she enjoys listening to music and eating with friends in the city. 

Hayden Cahill

Hayden is from Northampton, UK and he is currently doing his undergraduate degree at the University of Surrey. In the von Zastrow lab, he is studying the trafficking of GPCRs to primary cilia. Hayden is making the most of his time in San Francisco by traveling, exploring the city, and going to music festivals. 

Lab Alumni (past/current affiliation)

Damien Jullié (Merck)

Benjamin Barsi-Rhyne (Vicinitas Therapeutics)

Grace Peng (Genentech)

Erica Sanchez (Department of Biology, UT Dallas)

André Lazar (Artemys Foods)

Miriam Stoeber (Department of Cell Physiology and Metabolism, University of Geneva)

Braden Lobingier (Department of Physiology and Biochemistry, OHSU)

Nina Tsvetanova (Department of Pharmacology and Cancer Biology, Duke University)

Kelsie Eichel (Department of Biology, Stanford University)

Roshanak Irannejad (Department of Biochemistry and Biophysics, UCSF)

Yasunori Uchida (Division of Membrane Dynamics, Kobe University)

Katherine Varandas (Laboratory of Developmental Genetics, Rockefeller University)

Alison Leaf (Seven Bridges)

Regina Choy (Division of Oncology Research, Genentech)

Anastasia Henry (Denali Therapeutics)

Jonathan Tomshine (Department of Neurology Surgery, Mayo Clinic)

Jin Cui (Relypsa, Inc.)

Paul Temkin (Biogen)

Vu Dang (iPierian Pharmaceutical)

James Hislop (Department of Pharmacology, University of Aberdeen)

Eric Beattie (Teva Pharmaceuticals)

Aylin Hanyaloglu (Department of Endocrinology, Imperial College London)

Gabriel Vargas (Amgen)

Michael Tanowitz (Ionis Pharmaceuticals)

Jennifer Whistler (Center for Neuroscience, UC Davis)

Francis Lee (Department of Psychiatry and Pharmacology, Weill Cornell Medical College)

Mike Gage (Department of Systems Biology, Harvard Medical School)

Ben Lauffer (Division of Neuroscience Research, Genentech)

Guillermo Yudowski (Biogen)

Joy Yu Zuchero (Denali Therapeutics)

Manoj Puthenveedu (Department of Pharmacology, University of Michigan)

Sarah Kotowski (Gilead Sciences)