Ataman Sendoel, Principal Investigator


Ataman studied medicine at the University of Zurich and obtained an MD-PhD in Michael Hengartner's lab at the Institute of Molecular Life Sciences at the University of Zurich. During his doctoral studies, he worked on hypoxia response pathways and RNA-binding proteins in the context of apoptotic cell death induction in C. elegans.


Following a residency in hematology at the University Hospital Zurich, Ataman joined the lab of Elaine Fuchs at the Rockefeller University in New York. During his postdoc, he uncovered an essential role for translational reprogramming in the pathogenesis of cancer. For his work, Ataman has received the Science Magazine and GE Healthcare Young Life Scientist award for the best PhD thesis in Europe, the Georg Friedrich Goetz prize of the University of Zurich and the Blavatnik regional award for young scientists. He is a recipient of an ERC starting grant and a SNSF professorship grant.





Homare Matias Yamahachi, Senior Researcher


Before joining the lab, Homare Yamahachi studied Biology at the University of Buenos Aires in Argentina before obtaining his PhD in Charles Gilbert’s lab at The Rockefeller University in New York. During his doctoral studies, he discovered that changes in sensory experience alter neuronal structural plasticity in vivo using viral vectors and two-photon microscopy. For his post-doctoral studies, Homare joined the Moser lab in Norway where he studied how the brain computes space to navigate the world. He then studied social communication in birds with an emphasis on animal welfare in Richard Hahnloser’s lab at the University of Zurich and ETH Zurich.





Mark Ormiston, Animal Technician


Mark Ormiston graduated with a master's degree in zoology at Newcastle upon Tyne University and persued a career in line with his interests in animal biology in the UK. In 2014 he moved to Switzerland and began work as an animal technician for the Institute of Laboratory Animal Science at the University of Zürich, where he developed skills in a variety of specialised transgenic reproductive techniques such as embryo transfers, pronuclear injections and gamete cryopreservation. He has long been a strong proponent of the 3R concepts in science and has previously managed the Swiss 3R Network communications.






Merve Yigit, PhD student


Merve studied Molecular Biology and Genetics at the Istanbul Technical University in Turkey and did her bachelor thesis working on human breast cancer. She then started her master study at the LMU (Ludwig Maximilians-Universität) in Munich in 2016, where she focused on Human Biology and Cellular Biology. She performed her master thesis in a translational cancer immunology lab investigating the effect of hypomethylating agents, cytostatics and immunomodulatory drugs on antibody mediated immunotherapy (BiTE therapy) of acute myeloid leukaemia. 





Fabiola Valdivia Francia, PhD student


Fabiola studied biology in Universidad Peruana Cayetano Heredia (UPCH) in Lima, Peru. She joined Dr. Guerra's Single Molecule Lab as a junior research assistant where she studied the effect of gene expression during the stringent response in bacteria. Fabiola later received a full scholarship from the Science National Council in Peru to study her Master’s in Biochemistry and Molecular Biology in UPCH. During her master's studies, Fabiola developed, standardized and validated an indirect ELISA test using immunogenic peptides for the diagnostic of Cutaneous Leishmaniasis in Dr. Arevalo's Pathoantigens Lab. For the past year, Fabiola has been working as a research assistant, continuing with the development of rapid diagnostic tests for leishmaniasis. 






Peter Renz, Postdoc


Peter studied Biochemistry in Mannheim and Molecular Biology with a focus on Genetics in Cologne, Germany. During research projects under the supervision of Prof. Dieter Gruenert in San Francisco, USA and Prof. William James in Oxford, UK, he worked on gene therapeutic approaches utilizing CRISPR/Cas9 technology in induced pluripotent stem cells (iPSCs). He conducted his master’s research project on improving safety and efficacy of chimeric antigen receptor (CAR) T-Cells for cancer immunotherapy in the lab of Prof. Hinrich Abken.
For his PhD he joined the Lab of Prof. Anton Wutz at the ETH Zurich under the supervision of Dr. Tobias Beyer, where he used transcriptomics in human embryonic stem cells to identify novel regulators of TGFβ and FGF signaling in the context of pluripotency and early development.





Merima Forny, Lab Technician


Merima obtained her bachelor in Biology at the University of Vienna. Afterwards, she moved to Zurich, where she started her master study at the University of Zurich. She performed her master thesis on non-viral gene therapy in the lab of Prof. Beat Thoeny at the University Children’s Hospital in Zurich. Following her studies, Merima continued to work as a research associate and diagnostician at the Division of Metabolism at the University Children’s Hospital in Zurich. Her work over the past five years at the Division of Metabolism included mutational analysis, biochemical enzyme and metabolite diagnostics, as well as research, involving a mouse model of methylmalonic aciduria.