Current Members

Andrew johnson

Postdoctoral fellow

University of California, San Diego CA, Postgraduate, Obesity & Diabetes research group of Professor Jerrold Olefsky

University of Oxford, Oxford, UK, PhD, Immunology, supervised by Professor Fiona Powrie, PhD conferral: May 2013

University of Bristol, Bristol UK, BSc., Biochemistry with study in Industry, First Class

What is the best thing about where you grew up? 
The energy - there's always something happening in London.

When you're not in the lab, what are you doing?
Running, riding the bike or out with friends.

What skill would you most likely develop for the zombie apocalypse?
The ability to grow vegetables.

What do you enjoy most about working in DePaolo Lab?
The ambition. The potential here and the projects we are devising are fantastic.

What is the most important message you've gotten from your gut vibes?
To believe in yourself and what you are doing - in the end a lot about (poop) science seems crazy at first.


Denise chac

PhD Student

denise.jpeg

University of Tennessee, Knoxville TN, Bachelor of Science, Ecology & Evolutionary Biology, second major, Anthropology 

What is the best thing about where you grew up? 
Other than the quiet country side and awesome fried chicken in Tennessee, I love watching fireflies rise from the grass during the summer nights - and also explaining to people that sometimes they will poop in your hand when you catch them.

When you're not in the lab, what are you doing?
Creating weird but cool DIY projects and working on puzzles. On lazy days, I enjoy watching sci-fi TV shows and reading.

What skill would you most likely develop for the zombie apocalypse?
Welding a sword and bow and arrow.

What do you enjoy most about working in DePaolo Lab?
I love being surrounded by amazing scientists that are always striving to do their best. When I'm in lab, I'm with good friends and great thinkers.

What is the most important message you've gotten from your gut vibes?
Not to go investigate creepy noises without a weapon in hand. 


melissa kordahi

PHD Student

American University of Beirut, Beirut, Lebanon, Bachelor of Science, Biology, 2009
Lebanese American University, Byblos, Lebanon, Pharm.D, 2014

What is the best thing about where you grew up? 
I spent a great deal of my life in Byblos, Lebanon, where I am originally from. It's a beautiful ancient port city on the coast of the Mediterranean sea and there are so many things I love about this place, mainly its amazing historical wealth, the beaches and, of course, having all my family there.

When you’re not in the lab, what are you doing?  
When I'm not in the lab, I like to read, hang out with friends or discover new places.  I am also into extreme sports...I have yet to try bungee jumping and skydiving!

What skill would you most like to develop for the zombie apocalypse?
If the zombie apocalypse is coming, I would focus all my efforst on finding another habitable planet and learn how to plan a space mission.  The day it happens, the spaceship would be ready for launch, carrying as many survivors as possible and everything we would need to go colonize a new planet.

What do you enjoy most about working in DePaolo lab?
I really enjoy working with a team of young, energetic and talented people who make science so fun and exciting.

What is the most important message you've gotten from your gut vibes?
When in doubt, you just have to believe in yourself.