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About Us

In the Edelblum Lab, we believe that investigating the intersection between mucosal immunology, cell biology and microbiology will best help us understand the underlying cause of IBD. By visualizing cellular interactions in real time, we aim to provide new insight into the complexities of intestinal immunity. Through our studies, we hope to develop novel strategies to enhance barrier function in IBD patients.

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Karen Edelblum, Ph.D.

Associate Professor 

With over 20 years combined experience in the fields of gastrointestinal epithelial biology, mucosal immunology and physiology, I have developed expertise in examining immune/epithelial interactions in the context of mucosal homeostasis and disease, such as inflammatory bowel disease (IBD).

Matthew Fischer

Graduate Student - Molecular Biology, Genetics and Cancer Track, Rutgers

Matt joined the Edelblum lab in May 2019  as a pre-doctoral candidate. Matt's expertise in microbiology, will come in handy while investigating the role of type I interferon signaling in gamma delta IEL motility and activation.

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Natasha Golovchenko

Graduate Student - Infection, Immunity and Inflammation Track, Rutgers

Natasha comes to the lab with previous experience in IBD research from her undergraduate work at the University of Michigan. As a pre-doctoral candidate, her main project focuses on how ileal inflammation affects  gamma delta IEL surveillance and localization within the mucosa.

Sara Alonso

Graduate Student - Molecular Biology, Genetics and Cancer Track, Rutgers

Sara joined the Edelblum Lab in July 2020 with an interest in understanding the molecular mechanisms by which gamma delta IELs are activated in response to changes in the mucosal microenvironment. 



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Andrew Fong

Research Technician

Andrew joined the lab in 2022 after finishing his degree in Cell and Molecular Biology at Northeastern University. He brings his experience working with Shigella and love of GI research to better understand gamma delta IEL function in host-pathogen interactions.

Sajan Achi, PhD

Postdoctoral Fellow

Sajan joins our group in Spring 2023 from UCSD and UMass-Lowell where he worked on host/microbe interactions in the gut. His main focus will be elucidating how commensal microbes contribute the expansion and effector function of gamma delta IELs.  

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Ananya Parthasarathy

Master's student

Ananya rotated in the lab in September 2023, and within a week, she was hooked on mucosal immunology! She'll be tackling questions related to gamma delta IEL migration in response to type I interferon and can't wait to get her hands on some enteroids.

Irving Martínez-Vargas, PhD

Postdoctoral Fellow

Irving came to the lab in October 2023 with an already deep admiration for gamma delta IELs from his PhD at Centro de Investigación y de Estudios Avanzados del Instituto Politécnico Nacional in Mexico City. Now he's putting all that knowledge to good use studying regulatory gamma delta IELs in IBD.  

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