TB RAMP Fall 2023 Scholars

Click here for more information regarding the TB Research and Mentorship Program (TB RAMP)

Helene AschmannHélène Aschmann

I am an epidemiologist and postdoctoral scholar in the Division of Pulmonary and Critical Care Medicine under the mentorship of Priya Shete. My research focuses on patient-centered care for latent tuberculosis in low and high TB burden settings. I use quantitative preference surveys and benefit-harm analyses to investigate who should be tested and treated for latent tuberculosis. 



Rania BouzeyenRania Bouzeyen

I am a postdoctoral scholar in the Department of Experimental Medicine under the mentorship of Dr. Babak Javid. My research focuses on the role of antibody-mediated immunity to Mycobacterium tuberculosis (Mtb) infection and the mechanisms, by which, they protect against TB disease.  I aim to investigate antibody-based therapeutics against TB, as adjunctive treatment, in combination with standard TB drugs in Mtb-infected animals.  



Jonathan BudzikJonathan Budzik

I am an Assistant Professor of Pulmonary and Critical Care Medicine and study innate immunity to tuberculosis. We are using animal and cell culture models in combination with genetics and proteomics to identify host factors that control tuberculosis growth. By improving our knowledge of pathogenesis mechanisms, we hope to enable development of host-directed therapies that enhance the immune response to tuberculosis infection. 



Mohamad DandanMohamad Dandan 

My Ph.D. studies in Metabolic Biology at UC Berkeley, focused on stable isotope methods and technology combined with mass spectrometry to investigate the fluxes of metabolic pathways in human health and disease. At UCSF, I am co-mentored by James Fraser and Babak Javid, pursuing my postdoctoral studies in structural biology to study ribosomal structures of TB using cryogenic electron microscopy (Cryo-EM). My postdoctoral research revolves around: How antibiotics regulate protein translation in TB in a context specific fashion to alter a) translation initiation and b) translation fidelity. To address my research question, I employ Cryo-EM to determine the structures of antibiotics complexed with the ribosome in TB. My research will shed light onto the context-specific function of antibiotics in TB.

Alex MohapatraAlex Mohapatra

I am an Instructor in the Division of Pulmonary, Critical Care, Allergy & Sleep Medicine at UCSF. Under the mentorship of Prof. Joel Ernst, I study the myeloid cells in the lung that engulf Mycobacterium tuberculosis to determine why some cells are able to eliminate the pathogen while others are inhibited. Understanding the differences between these cells will reveal novel therapeutic targets to enhance the body's own immune defenses. 



Matthew MurrillMatthew Murrill

Matthew Murrill is an Assistant Professor in the Division of Hospital Medicine at the University of California, San Francisco. His research focuses on improving the quality of tuberculosis care, particularly prevention, using epidemiology and implementation science. Dr. Murrill earned his MD and PhD in epidemiology at Johns Hopkins University in Baltimore, Maryland. During his doctoral dissertation supported by an NIH Fogarty Fellowship and the Johns Hopkins Medical Scientist Training Program, he conducted research on multidrug-resistant tuberculosis treatment outcomes and preventive therapy in India. He subsequently completed internal medicine residency training and an academic hospital medicine fellowship at UCSF. His current research focuses on improving the quality of latent tuberculosis care in the U.S. and TB screening practices for targeted immunotherapies.   


Paul OgongoPaul Ogongo

I am a Postdoctoral Scholar in the Division of Experimental Medicine, UCSF, and a Helen Hay Whitney Foundation Postdoctoral Fellow under the mentorship of Prof. Joel Ernst. My research focuses on the role of human CD4 T cell immunity in the control of Mycobacterium tuberculosis infection. The overarching goal is to identify potential new TB vaccines, improve vaccination strategies against TB, and determine correlates of protection. I am a co-chair of the Early Career Researchers (ECR) Network of the Working Group of New TB Vaccines which is part of the Stop TB Partnership.      


Nora WestNora West

I am a specialist in the UCSF Division of Pulmonary and Critical Care Medicine under the mentorship of Dr. Priya Shete. My research focuses on understanding trajectories of mental health during TB diagnosis and treatment, the influence of mental health on engagement with the TB diagnosis and care cascade, and implementation science approaches for the integration of mental health services into TB care and treatment. 



Weihao ZhengWeihao Zheng

I am a postdoctoral scholar in the Division of Experimental Medicine, under the mentorship of Dr. Joel Ernst. I am interested in studying the mechanisms by which Mycobacterium tuberculosis evades phagocyte clearance, the mechanisms of protective immunity in tuberculosis, and the mechanisms of granuloma formation.