PhD Candidate Education Education: University of Virginia - Class of 2015 Research Research Areas: Developmental Biology Molecular Genetics Research Interests: I currently am working on many different projects to answer questions that pique my interests: 1. iTEC Reprogramming: Over-expression of a transcription factor FOXN1 differentiate mouse embryonic fibroblasts (MEFs) into induced thymic epithelial cells (iTECs). Using single-cell transcriptomic data analysis, I intend to understand how close they are to TECs in vivo. We recently discovered a genetic pathway that can differentiate iTECs into a subset of mature medullary TECs. scRNA-seq of the control/test groups will provide us potential targets I can test both in vivo and in vitro. The achievable goal is to create a reliable in vitro system to study thymus. The ultimate goal is to utilise the in vitro system to create fully functional thymic microenvironment to grow T-cells ex-vivo. 2. Thymic involution: Foxn1-lacZ is a genetic model with a premature onset & an accelerated rate of thymic involution. Using scRNA-seq with young/old mice, I wish to have a better understanding of the ageing associated disorder, the thymic involution. 3. Neuroinflammation: How can immunosenescence & inflammageing of T-cells that caused by the thymic involution affect inflammatory responses in the central nervous system (CNS)? How are they tied into neurodegenerative disorders?