- FELLOWS AND RESEARCH ASSOCIATES:
Alex J. Freemerman, Ph.D., Research Associate
Alex was the Makowski laboratory manager and lead research associate since he joined in 2009. He holds a Ph.D. in Cell Biology and has more than 15 years of research experience focused on pre-clinical drug discovery, including 10 years as a Research Assistant Professor in the Department of Surgery at Duke University Medical Center studying mouse models of cancer. Dr. Freemerman has expertise in xenograft studies, examining signaling cascades, biochemical assays, as well as considerable experience in managing rodent colonies, minor rodent surgery and preparation of tissues for immunohistochemistry. Alex led a project examining the role of glucose transport and metabolism in macrophage and Kupffer cell inflammation and contributed to almost every manuscript from the lab.
Amy Johnson, Ph.D., Postdoctoral Fellow
Amy was in the lab from 2012-2015 after completing her Ph.D. in Nutrition Biochemistry at UNC Chapel Hill where she studied mitochondrial metabolism. In the Makowski lab, she expanded her expertise by working on several projects examining substrate metabolism and the inflammatory response in macrophages. Amy was awarded a 3 year NIH NRSA F32 postdoctoral fellowship. She currently works in industry.
Sneha Sundaram, PhD., Postdoctoral Fellow
Sneha joined the lab in 2011 and left for a position at USDA in 2014. She received her Ph.D. in Pharmaceutical Sciences at the University of Nebraska Medical Center, Omaha NE in 2009. She has expertise in the formulation of nano- and microparticulate drug delivery systems for intravenous and topical applications, assessing the in vitro and in vivo efficacy of these tools. Sneha joined the Makowski lab to examine high fat diet-induced weight gain (obesity) and post-partum associated obesity in the development of basal-like breast carcinoma/Triple negative breast cancer. She currently works at USDA.
Brante P. Sampey, PhD., Postdoctoral Fellow
Brante received his Ph.D. in Molecular and Environmental Toxicology at the University of Colorado Health Sciences Center, (UC-HSC) Denver, Colorado in 2005. He has expertise in examining oxidative stress associated with chemical-induced liver injury, LC-MS/MS, and in a previous postdoc examined mechanisms of carcinogenic agents and potential anticancer compounds in gynecologic malignancies. Brante was in the Makowski lab from 2010-2011 and contributed to several projects including 1) Obesity and inflammation in the Cafeteria Diet; 2) Metabolomic profiling of lipid mediators and mechanistic insight into their inflammatory potential; and 3) Fatty acid and glucose transport/metabolism and inflammation in macrophages in vitro, ex vivo, and in vivo through bone marrow transplant studies.
- GRADUATE STUDENTS:
Alyssa J. Cozzo, Ph.D. Candidate
Alyssa was as a doctoral candidate in the Department of Nutrition doctoral program at UNC. She joined the Makowski lab in 2014 and graduated in 4 years with exceptional success. She has expertise in the tumor and normal microenvironment of breast cancer with extensive experience in immunometabolism. She is currently conducting a postdoctoral fellowship.
Yuanyuan Qin, Ph.D. Candidate
Yuanyuan was a doctoral candidate in the Division of Nutrition Biochemistry, Department of Nutrition doctoral program at UNC. She joined the Makowski lab in 2010 as a Sanofi-Aventis fellow after completing her MS degree at Sun-Yat Sen University in China. She studied adipose inflammation and fatty acid transport protein 1 (FATP1) in macrophage biology. She is currently a postdoc in California.
Liyang Zhao, M.S. Candidate
Liyang joined the Makowski lab as a masters student. She completed two large studies on macrophage metabolism and atherosclerosis and diet-induced obesity. She is currently completing her doctorate.
- UNC BACHELORS OF SCIENCE IN PUBLIC HEALTH PROGRAM (BSPH):
Ottavia Zattra, BSPH Candidate
Ottavia obtained a bachelors in science in public health (BSPH) in Nutrition at the Gillings School of Global Public Health. She had novel findings on mast cells in the mammary gland and tumor microenvironment. She graduated with highest honors and is now in medical school at Harvard.
Maili Lim, BSPH Candidate
Maili obtained a bachelors in science in public health (BSPH) in Nutrition at the Gillings School of Global Public Health in 2015. She worked on glucose metabolism in macrophages from 2013-2015 in the Makowski lab. She graduated with highest honors and is now in medical school at UNC Chapel Hill.
Luma Essaid, BSPH Candidate
Luma obtained a bachelors in science in public health (BSPH) in Nutrition at the Gillings School of Global Public Health in 2015. She worked on obesity and breast cancer from 2013-2015 in the Makowski lab. She graduated with highest honors and is now in medical school at UNC Chapel Hill.
Megan Huang, BSPH Candidate
Megan was a part of the Makowski lab from 2012-2014. She worked on macrophage substrate metabolism. She graduated and completed a MS at Harvard Chan School of Public Health. She currently works for a non-profit in Boston.
Gina Sacks, BSPH Candidate
Gina was a BSPH student in the Department of Nutrition and a member of the Makowski lab from 2010-2012. She attended Wash U School of Medicine.
Jillian Hamilton, MPH Candidate
Jillian was an MPH/RD student in the Department of Nutrition and a member of the Makowski lab from 2010-2012. She graduated from our highly competitive MPH/RD program and contributed significantly to several projects in lab.
- HIGH SCHOOL & UNDERGRADS:
Kathryn Hobbs, Undergraduate in Biology Dept.
Kathyrn volunteered in the Makowski lab from 2016- 2017.
Jimmy Zhang, High school student and undergrad research associate.
Jimmy is a graduate of the nationally recognized NC Math and Science High School where he met Dr. Makowski as a guest lecturer. Dr. Makowski was his mentor for his high school project. He then attended UNC as undergrad. He has been a volunteer or employee in the Makowski Lab since the Summer of 2011. He is currently in UNC Dental School.
Chris Kartawira, High school student.
Chris is a graduate of the nationally recognized NC Math and Science High School. He was a research volunteer in the Makowski Lab from 2016-2017 and studied tumor associated macrophages. He is currently at Cornell for his undergraduate degree.