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Team MitoMetabLab

~ FALL 2023 ~

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Kimberly Dunham-Snary, MPS, PhD

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Dr. Kimberly Dunham-Snary received her PhD in Molecular & Cellular Pathology from the University of Alabama at Birmingham in 2014 under the supervision of Dr. Scott Ballinger, where she elucidated the connections between mitochondrial genetics and body composition. In 2015, she joined Dr. Stephen Archer's laboratory in the Department of Medicine at Queen's University for her postdoctoral fellowship. There, she identified the mitochondrial pulmonary vascular oxygen sensor, and discovered a novel role for mitochondria in neutrophil function. In 2020, she accepted an Assistant Professor position in the Departments of Biomedical & Molecular Sciences, and Medicine at Queen's and is currently a Tier II Canada Research Chair. Her research interests remain in the field of mitochondrial biology – how genetic and structural changes to mitochondria alter cell function in both physiology and pathology, specifically the interplay between mitochondrial dynamics, mitochondrial genetics and proliferative signalling in cardiometabolic diseases. Her goal is to understand how these processes intersect in the context of disease and to develop a 'mitochondrial-metabolomic fingerprint' of cardiometabolic diseases. An avid motorsports and canine enthusiast, when not in the lab, she can be found exploring with her loyal companion, Steve McQueen, or catching the latest Grand Prix or Motor Speedway event.

Graduate Students

Samsara Boots

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Sam is a DBMS MSc student from Kingston, Ontario. Through her studies at university, as well as prior experiences working in patient care, she developed a strong passion for molecular genetics and medicine. She is an integral team member, helping manage the lab's resources, and collaborates on every ongoing project in the lab - stay tuned for details on her project! Outside of the lab she is an artist and a musician, as well as an executive member of the Queens’ Trivia team.

Dalia Miller

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Dalia is a Translational Medicine MSc student who originally joined the team as a volunteer, remained as a student technician, and then completed a research independent study! Stay tuned for details on her project!

MitoMetabLab History Note: Dalia was the lab's first employee!

Abhishek Shastry

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Abhishek is a Translational Medicine MSc student who is continuing his studies with MitoMetabLab after completing his fourth year Life Sciences Honours Thesis. He identified changes in key metabolic pathways in the skeletal muscle between strains of laboratory mouse and the implications for type II diabetes treatment. Abhi hails from Ajax, Ontario and his MSc project will explore links between the circulating metabolome and mitochondrial structure in preclinical cardiometabolic disease. Outside of the lab, he is an Academic Coordinator with Queen's Tamil Students' Association.

Mia Wilkinson

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Mia is a Translational Medicine MSc student who is continuing her studies with MitoMetabLab after completing her fourth year Life Sciences Honours Thesis. She determined tissue-specific changes in gene expression between white adipose tissue depots, and examined the complicated matrix of mitochondrial genetics, white adipose tissue location, and diet. From Vancouver Island, BC, she is passionate about investigating the role mitochondrial genetics plays in the aetiology and pathology of cardiometabolic diseases. Her MSc project (that's expanding to a PhD - stay tuned!) will develop and optimize a method for assessing murine skeletal muscle health using circulating platelets. Outside of the lab, she is an Events Coodinator for Operation Smile Queen’s Chapter and the Fundraising Chair for Queen’s Lyme Disease Coalition – Madoc Chapter.

Undergraduate Students

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Frances Ford

Frances' bio is coming soon!

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Aleksa Groen in 't Woud

Aleksa is a member of the inaugural Queen's Discovery Lab Research Team; Aleksa's bio is coming soon!

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Jayne Kang

Jayne's bio is coming soon!

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Michelle Kuriakose

Michelle is a member of the inaugural Queen's Discovery Lab Research Team; Michelle's bio is coming soon!

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Naomi Loughlin

Naomi's bio is coming soon!

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Ethan Morad

Ethan is a member of the inaugural Queen's Discovery Lab Research Team; Ethan's bio is coming soon!

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Sydney Pendleton

Sydney's bio is coming soon!

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Raymond Popescu

Raymond is a fourth year Health Sciences student pursuing his (third- and) fourth-year research project(s) in MitoMetabLab. Raymond’s interest in both oxygen sensing mechanisms in vasculature and applied immunology have drawn his focus to the mitochondrion and its extensive role in metabolic pathologies. Outside of the lab, he’s a host at the QueensU radio station, CFRC 101.9, researcher at KHSC and an avid cyclist

MitoMetabLab Staff

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Jennifer Veeneman | Research Assistant

After completing a VERY successful PATH 499 project in 2022/2023, Jennifer has joined Team MitoMetabLab as a Research Assistant. Jennifer's appointment is joint with Dr. Jacob Rullo, a clinician-scientist at Queen's, practicing ophthalmologist, and academic researcher. Drs. Dunham-Snary and Rullo are conducting joint research investigating mitochondrial structure and function changes in ocular diseases (and have affectionately dubbed their blended lab family "Team Mito Eyeball").

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