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Meet our team!

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Elena Ezhkova, PhD

Lab Head

Elena carried out her PhD studies on epigenetics and chromatin in Dr. Bill Tansey’s lab at the Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory (NY, USA). For her postdoctoral studies, she moved to Dr. Elaine Fuchs’s lab at the Rockefeller University (NY, USA), where she learned the skin stem cell system. At Mount Sinai, Dr. Ezhkova's lab is part of the Black Family Stem Cell Institute and the Department of Developmental and Regenerative Biology. 


Meng-Yen Li, PhD

Postdoctoral Fellow   (SBDRC Transition-to-Independence Awardee)

Meng-Yen received his PhD from the Institute of Biochemistry at National Taiwan University under the supervision by Dr. Guang-Chao Chen. During his PhD, he studied the function and molecular regulation of Protein Tyrosine Phosphatase in lung cancer. Meng Yen joined the Ezhkova lab in February 2018. In the lab, he is interested in  skin cancer.


Pooja Flora, PhD

Postdoctoral Fellow   (K99/R00 Awardee)

Pooja received her PhD  at University at Albany in Dr. Rangan's lab. She joined the Ezhkova lab in September 2018 and is interested in uncovering how epigenetic regulators control hair follicle stem cell function in the adult skin. Outside of the lab, Pooja is an avid reader and enjoys fantasy fiction. She is also fascinated by true crime podcasts and documentaries.

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Madison Weber

Graduate Student     (F31 Awardee)

Madison earned her BA in biology and philosophical studies from Bard College at Simon's Rock. She joined the lab in December 2019 and is interested in skin cancer. Outside the lab, she stays busy with sewing, crafts, and creative writing, and she loves to dance!


Meagan Branch

Graduate Student     (F31 Awardee) 

Meagan received her BS in Biochemistry at Elon University in North Carolina, and after graduation she went on to participate in the NIH’s post-baccalaureate research education program (PREP) at the Medical University of South Carolina. She joined the lab in 2020 and is interested in wound healing. Outside of lab, Meagan enjoys trying new foods and restaurants as well as hanging out with friends. 


Maria Mercedes

Graduate Student   (T32 Awardee)

Maria received her BA/BS in Spanish Literature and Biology at Brooklyn College (CUNY). She has a master’s degree in Biomedical Science from Drexel University. She joined the lab on Fall 2021 and is interested in epigenetic regulators in epidermal stem cell control. As a first-generation student, she advocates for Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion (DEI) in STEM.


Nazifa Salsabeel

Graduate Student

Nazifa received her BS in Biotechnology at The City College of New York (CUNY), then went on to participate in the Research Pipeline Program (ResTep) at Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center. She joined the lab in Spring 2024 and is interested in skin cancer. As a first-generation student, she advocates for the Girls Education in Medicine and Science (GEMS) program.

Megha Padubidri

Megha Padubidri

Master's Student

Megha received her BS (Honors) in Biology at Azim Premji University in Bangalore, India. She joined the lab in Fall 2023 and is interested in studying the role of stem cells in wound healing. She is also interested in studying epigenetic modifications in cells damaged by UV exposure. Outside the lab, she enjoys wildlife photography, doodling and is an avid reader.

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Yudong Zhou

Master's Student

Yudong received his Bsc from Imperial College London studying biomedical sciences. His research interests have been focused on studying iPSC-derived organoids in hydrogels as well as stem cell differentiation in development. He joined the lab in October 2023 to study Merkel cells' decrease and regeneration. Outside of the lab, he enjoys singing, running, longboarding, gaming, and playing chess. 


Sergei Ezhkov

Laboratory Technician

Sergei joined the lab in April 2016. He is helping with genotyping and lab upkeep. 


Tasnim Sumaita

CEYE High School & Undergraduate Scholar, 2022-2023

Current position: Undergraduate Student, Macaulay Honors College, Hunter College

Alua Zhanuzakova

CEYE High School Scholar, 2022-2024

Current position: Undergraduate Student, Columbia University

Minh Nguyen

Postdoctoral Fellow, 2017-2023

Current position: Senior Scientist, Erini Papapetrou Lab, Mount Sinai

Carmit Bar

PhD Candidate, 2015-2020

Current position:​ Scientific Associate, IMPRINT Publication Science

Idan Cohen

Postdoctoral Fellow, 2014-2019

Current position: Assistant Professor, Ben-Gurion University, Israel 


Katherine Dauber

PhD Candidate, 2012-2017

Current position: Senior research coordinator, Northwell Health


Julian Valdes

Postdoctoral Fellow, 2012-2017

Current Position: Assistant professor, UNAM Mx


Carolina Perdigoto

Postdoctoral Fellow, 2012-2016

Current Position: Chief Editor, Nature Structural & Molecular Biology

Francis Santoriello

Laboratory Manager, 2014-2015

Current Position: Postdoctoral Fellow, Princeton University

Evan Bardot

Laboratory Manager, 2011-2014

Current Position: Associate Editor, Nature Communications

Jisheng Zhang

Postdoctoral Fellow, 2011-2013 

Current Position: Assistant Professor, Qingdao University of Science and Technology, China


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