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Affiliated Faculty

Over 970 faculty are affiliated with Stanford Bio-X and are eligible to apply for our grants and be notified about fundraising opportunities, collaborations with industries, events, courses and available facilities and instruments. Learn how to become an affiliate.

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  • Bio-X Affiliated Faculty

    Dr. Onn Brandman's lab studies how cells sense and respond to stress. They employ an integrated set of techniques including single cell analysis, mathematical modeling, genomics, structural studies, and in vitro assays.

    Research areas include:

    • Protein Quality Control: Cells monitor protein quality from the moment it is synthesized until it is ultimately degraded. We are studying how these pathways function to identify and cope with defective protein.
    • Quality Control of Translation: Failures in protein synthesis are inevitable given the massive number of proteins that cells create. We are studying how protein synthesis that stalls midway can lead to translation arrest, degradation of the partially synthesized nascent chain, and degradation of the mRNA.
    • HSF1 and Stress Signaling: Heat Shock Factor 1 (HSF1) is a conserved eukaryotic transcription factor that drives a protective program in response to stress. We are characterizing and studying the effectors of HSF1 to gain a better understanding of this important regulator.
    • Translation Under Stress: Selective translation in response to stress is a highly conserved, adaptive phenomenon. We are studying the mechanisms that regulate translation during stress.
  • Photo of Dr. Fei-Fei Li, Professor of Computer Science at Stanford University.
    Bio-X Affiliated Faculty

    Dr. Fei-Fei Li is the inaugural Sequoia Professor in the Computer Science Department at Stanford University, and Co-Director of Stanford’s Human-Centered AI Institute. She served as the Director of Stanford’s AI Lab from 2013 to 2018. During her sabbatical from Stanford from January 2017 to September 2018, she was Vice President at Google and served as Chief Scientist of AI/ML at Google Cloud.

    Dr. Fei-Fei Li’s current research interests include cognitively inspired AI, machine learning, deep learning, computer vision and AI+healthcare especially ambient intelligent systems for healthcare delivery. In the past she has also worked on cognitive and computational neuroscience. Dr. Li has published more than 200 scientific articles in top-tier journals and conferences, including Nature, PNAS, Journal of Neuroscience, CVPR, ICCV, NIPS, ECCV, ICRA, IROS, RSS, IJCV, IEEE-PAMI, New England Journal of Medicine, Nature Digital Medicine, etc. Dr. Li is the inventor of ImageNet and the ImageNet Challenge, a critical large-scale dataset and benchmarking effort that has contributed to the latest developments in deep learning and AI. In addition to her technical contributions, she is a national leading voice for advocating diversity in STEM and AI. She is co-founder and chairperson of the national non-profit AI4ALL aimed at increasing inclusion and diversity in AI education.

    The Stanford Vision and Learning Lab (SVL) at Stanford is directed by Professors Fei-Fei Li, Juan Carlos Niebles, and Silvio Savarese. The lab is tackling fundamental open problems in computer vision research and are intrigued by visual functionalities that give rise to semantically meaningful interpretations of the visual world. Their research addresses the theoretical foundations and practical applications of computational vision. They are focused on discovering and proposing the fundamental principles, algorithms and implementations for solving high-level visual perception and cognition problems involving computational geometry, automated image and video analysis, and visual reasoning. At the same time, their curiosity leads us to study the underlying neural mechanisms that enable the human visual system to perform high level visual tasks with amazing speed and efficiency.

  • Photo of Dr. Gregory Valiant, Assistant Professor of Computer Science at Stanford University.
    Bio-X Affiliated Faculty

    Dr. Gregory Valiant's research explores how to extract as much information as possible from data, with a focus on understanding the interplay between the accuracy of the extracted information and various factors such as the amount of available data, the quality/reliability of the data, the amount of memory that is available to process the data, etc. One of the main themes in Dr. Valiant's work is the design of efficient algorithms for accurately inferring information about complex distributions, given limited amounts of data, or limits on other resources such as the computation time, available memory or communication, or the quality of the available data.

  • Photo of Dr. Sherry Wren, Professor of Surgery at Stanford University.
    Bio-X Affiliated Faculty

    Dr. Sherry Wren is a board certified general surgeon who specializes in the surgical treatment of gastrointestinal cancer: including stomach, pancreas, intestinal, and colon and rectal cancers. She completed fellowship training in advanced hepatobiliary surgery and performs open, laparoscopic, and robotic approaches to these cancers.

    Dr. Wren is also very involved in humanitarian surgery and global surgery. She works and manages educational partnerships in Sub Saharan Africa.

    Dr. Wren's group's research interests are primarily in global surgery, quality improvement and surgical oncology, especially gastrointestinal cancers. They have ongoing studies in medical management trials for post operative ileus, robotics, pneumonia prevention, telehealth, and care delivery in low income settings.

  • Photo of Dr. Alberto Salleo, Professor of Materials Science & Engineering at Stanford University.
    Bio-X Affiliated Faculty

    Dr. Alberto Salleo's Research Group is interested in novel materials and processing techniques for large-area and flexible electronic/photonic devices. They also study defects and structure/property relations of polymeric semiconductors, as well as nano-structured and amorphous materials in thin films.

    Dr. Salleo's group's additional research interests include:

    • Novel materials and processing techniques for large-area and flexible electronic/photonic devices
    • Polymeric materials for electronics, bioelectronics, and biosensors
    • Electrochemical devices for neuromorphic computing
    • Defects and structure/property studies of polymeric semiconductors, nano-structured and amorphous materials in thin films
    • Advanced characterization techniques for soft matter
  • Executive Committee Member, Bio-X Affiliated Faculty

    Dr. Moler's laboratory builds and operates tools for measuring magnetic fields on small length scales. They use these tools to study superconductivity and mesoscopic quantum mechanical effects at low temperatures. The lab currently operates and improves on several home-built scanning apparatuses. These systems include a 4 Kelvin (K) magnetic force microscope, and a 4 K, 300 mK He3, and 12 mK dilution refrigerator that are used for scanning SQUID and Hall probe studies. These setups have mechanical and acoustic vibration isolation measures and use piezo positioners for precise sensor control.

  • Executive Committee Member, Seed Grant Committee Member, Scientific Leadership Council Chair, Clark Center Faculty, Clark Center Working Group Member

    By studying the visual system of mammals, the Shatz Lab discovered that adult wiring emerges from dynamic interactions between neurons involving neural function and synaptic plasticity. Even before birth and long before vision, the eye spontaneously generates and sends coordinated patterns of neural activity to the brain. Blocking this activity in utero, or preventing vision after birth, disrupts normal tuning up of circuits and brain wiring. In turn, neural activity regulates the expression of genes involved in the process of circuit tuning. To discover cell and molecular underpinnings of circuit tuning, her lab has conducted functional screens for genes regulated by neural activity. Among these genes is the MHC (major histocompatibility) Class I family. This finding was very surprising because these genes- HLA genes in humans- are involved in cellular immunity and were previously not thought to be expressed by neurons at all! The Shatz Lab showed that other components of a signaling system for Class I MHC are also present in neurons, including a novel receptor, PirB. By studying and/or generating knockout mice, the lab is exploring a role for these molecules in synaptic plasticity, learning, memory and neurological disorders. The lab employs a variety of approaches in these studies, ranging from molecular biology to slice electrophysiology to in vivo imaging to behavior. Research has relevance not only for understanding brain wiring and developmental disorders such as Autism and Schizphrenia, but also for understanding how the nervous and immune systems interact.

  • Seed Grant Committee Chair, Scientific Leadership Council Member, Bio-X Affiliated Faculty

    Dr. Cohen's research interests extend from hypothesis-driven studies in biochemistry and cell biology to discovery-driven interests in proteomics and systems biology to clinical treatment of acute lymphoblastic leukemia of children.

    The lab's biochemical studies have centered on the identification and characterization of members of the glutathione peroxidase family of antioxidant enzymes that contain an enzymatically active selenocysteine residue within the primary structure of the protein.

  • Photo of Dr. Mehrdad Shamloo, Professor of Neurosurgery at Stanford University.
    Bio-X Affiliated Faculty

    Dr. Mehrdad Shamloo's laboratory aims to better understand normal and pathological brain function so that they can contribute to the discovery of novel therapeutic approaches for neurologic disorders such as stroke, Alzheimer’s disease (AD), and autism. The lab has focused their efforts on a subset of genes/proteins involved in neuroprotective or neurodegenerative pathways, which they have shown to be regulated in the diseased brain.

  • Photo of Dr. Christopher Potts, Professor of Linguistics at Stanford University.
    Bio-X Affiliated Faculty

    Dr. Christopher Potts's group uses computational methods to explore how emotion is expressed in language and how linguistic production and interpretation are influenced by the context of utterance. This research combines methods from linguistics, cognitive psychology, and computer science, in the service of both scientific discovery and technology development. In many cases, they have taken theoretical models of language use and applied techniques from machine learning to scale those models for use on massive data sets and in complex environments. In a similar vein, they have developed and released large annotated data sets for work in natural language processing. These data sets span a range of subareas within the field and have enabled new classes of data-hungry deep learning models to be evaluated.

  • Photo of Dr. Christine Jacobs-Wagner, Professor of Biology at Stanford University.
    Bio-X Affiliated Faculty

    Cellular replication is a defining feature of life. But how do cells reproduce themselves? Dr. Christine Jacobs-Wagner's laboratory addresses this fundamental question by probing the governing principles and the spatiotemporal mechanisms that underlie cellular replication, with an emphasis of cell morphogenesis, cell growth, chromosome dynamics and cell cycle regulation. They use bacteria as model systems for two main reasons. First, bacteria lack the complex control systems of eukaryotes (e.g., cyclin/Cdk machinery); yet their multiplication process is remarkably efficient and faithful. Therefore, their study will help identify the core mechanisms involved in cellular replication. Second, bacteria have an immense impact on humans, including our health. Understanding how bacteria multiply will provide a basis for the rational design of new therapeutics and for the creative use of bacteria in medicine, industry, and the environment.

    The Jacobs-Wagner lab primarily uses three model systems: Escherichia coli, Caulobacter crescentus and the Lyme disease agent Borrelia burgdorferi. Each model has distinct advantages. There is a wealth of knowledge on E. coli and studies are facilitated by the availability of large collections of strains, tools and databases. The highly polarized dimorphic C. crescentus provides a unique set of strengths for addressing questions pertinent to positional and temporal information. With the human pathogen B. burgdorferi, we investigate how unusual properties in bacterial growth and replication contribute to pathogenesis and disease.

    Cellular life cannot be sustained and propagated without temporal and spatial organization. This also applies to bacteria, as they display polarity, possess a cytoskeleton, order their chromosomes in space, localize proteins, and depend critically on this surprisingly sophisticated cellular organization. The Jacobs-Wagner laboratory addresses the molecular and physical mechanisms involved in the internal organization of bacteria at several levels, from its origin, maintenance and replication in time and space to its function in cellular physiology and morphogenesis.

    All the processes they study depend on the physical and chemical properties of the cell. In recent years, they discovered that the bacterial cytoplasm does not behave as a simple (viscous) fluid. Instead, it exhibits non-linear dynamics. These dynamics arise from the nature of the cytoplasm: it is a chemically complex material, crowded by long entangled polymers, compact polymers, aggregates and solutes. The lab investigates how the physical and chemical properties of the cytoplasm impact intracellular organization and processes essential for cellular replication. Their ultimate goal is to obtain a complete mechanistic understanding that integrates the spatiotemporal and physicochemical information of the cell.

    For their studies, they use an interdisciplinary approach that combines genetics, genomics, and biochemistry with a battery of quantitative single-cell and single-molecule microscopy techniques. A large part of the Jacobs-Wagner lab's current effort is to improve our knowledge of the inventory of components involved in cellular replication and to characterize the function and interplay of known components and processes. To this end, they also develop new image analysis tools and mathematical models.

  • Photo of Dr. Serena Yeung, Assistant Professor of Biomedical Data Science and (by courtesy) of Computer Science and of Electrical Engineering at Stanford University.
    Bio-X Affiliated Faculty

    Dr. Serena Yeung's research focuses on machine learning in medicine and healthcare, and in particular, the development of computer vision algorithms to extract new insights and knowledge from visual data ranging from surgery and behavioral science videos to cell images. Her research has been broadly in the areas of computer vision, machine learning, and deep learning, with particular focus on human activity and video understanding, and applications to healthcare.

  • Photo of Dr. Jon-Paul Pepper, Assistant Professor of Otolaryngology at Stanford University.
    Bio-X Affiliated Faculty

    Facial paralysis is a debilitating condition that affects thousands of people.  The loss of movement on one side of the face can distort the appearance of one’s face during emotional expression, impact speech, the ability to eat and drink normally, and the health of one’s eye. When appropriate, surgery can help to rehabilitate a patient with facial paralysis. Despite excellent surgical technique, we are currently limited by the regenerative capacity of the body and perfect symmetry is impossible to restore.

    Directed by Dr. Jon-Paul Pepper, the mission of the Pepper lab's research is to identify new methods of increasing the capacity of the body to regenerate the facial nerve after injury.

    They do this by exploring the regenerative cues that are normally used to restore tissue after nerve injury, in particular through pathways of neurogenesis, nerve injury response, and Schwann cell response after injury.

  • Photo of Dr. Monroe Kennedy, Assistant Professor of Mechanical Engineering at Stanford University.
    Bio-X Affiliated Faculty

    Dr. Monroe Kennedy's research is to develop technology that improves everyday life by anticipating and acting on the needs of human counterparts. The research can be divided into the following sub-categories: robotic assistants, connected devices and intelligent wearables. Dr. Kennedy uses a combination of tools in dynamical systems analysis, control theory (classical, non-linear and robust control), state estimation and prediction, motion planning, vision for robotic autonomy and machine learning. His Assistive Robotics and Manipulation lab focuses heavily on both the analytical and experimental components of assistive technology design. While their application area domain is autonomous assistive technology, their primary focus is robotic assistants (mobile manipulators and humanoids) with the goal of deployment for service tasks that may be highly dynamic and require dexterity, situational awareness, and human-robot collaboration.

  • Photo of Dr. William Mitch, Professor of Civil & Environmental Engineering at Stanford University.
    Bio-X Affiliated Faculty

    Employing a fundamental understanding of organic chemical reaction pathways, Dr. William Mitch's research explores links between public health, engineering and sustainability. Topics of current interest include:

    • Public Health and Emerging Carcinogens: Recent changes to the disinfection processes fundamental to drinking and recreational water safety are creating a host of highly toxic byproducts linked to bladder cancer. Dr. Mitch's lab seeks to understand how these compounds form in order to be able to adjust the disinfection process to prevent their formation.
    • Global Warming and Oceanography: Oceanic dissolved organic matter is an important global carbon component, and has important impacts on the net flux of CO2 between the ocean and atmosphere. The lab seeks to understand some of the important abiotic chemical reaction pathways responsible for carbon turnover.
    • Sustainability and Persistant Organic Pollutants (POPs): While PCBs have been banned in the US, we continue to produce a host of structurally similar chemicals. Dr. Mitch's lab seeks to understand important chemical pathways responsible for POP destruction in the environment, in order to design less persistent and problematic chemicals in the future.
    • Engineering for Sustainable Wastewater Recycling: The shortage of clean water represents a critical challenge for the next century, and has necessitated the recycling of wastewater. The Mitch lab seeks to understand ways of engineer this process in ways to minimize harmful byproduct formation.
    • Carbon Sequestration: The lab is evaluating the formation of nitrosamine and nitraminecarcinogens from amine-based carbon capture, as well as techniques to destroy any of these byproducts that form.
  • Headshot photo of Dr. Karthik Balakrishnan, Associate Professor of Otolaryngology at Stanford University
    Bio-X Affiliated Faculty

    Dr. Karthik Balakrishnan studies ways to improve outcomes of pediatric airway reconstruction for diseases such as laryngotracheal, subglottic and tracheal stenosis, congenital tracheal stenosis and complete tracheal rings, laryngeal clefts, and vocal fold immobility and paralysis. He also examines the same questions for vascular malformations such as lymphatic malformations, venous malformations and hemangiomas.

    Dr. Balakrishnan's research focuses on ways to standardize treatments and measure outcomes in these complex diseases, as well as ways to reduce treatment costs and medical errors, particularly those related to cognitive bias. By improving outcomes and reducing costs, he aims to improve the value of care, while also optimizing patient and caregiver experience during the care process.

    Focus areas

    1. Standardizing outcomes and processes in pediatric airway reconstruction. Dr. Balakrishnan co-leads unique international and national multidisciplinary collaborative groups to develop standard processes and outcome measures for airway surgery and aerodigestive (breathing/voice/swallowing) care in children. His previous work has led to the development of similar standards for lymphatic malformations in the head and neck and for reconstructive surgery of the larynx (voice box) and trachea (windpipe) in children. He has internationally recognized expertise in developing consensus statements for these complex questions.
    2. Costs of otolaryngology care. Dr. Balakrishnan has studied thousands of patients and otolaryngology operations to identify factors that may predict more costly medical care. This will lead to process improvements that will allow Stanford and other institutions to reduce the cost burden that patients and the U.S. health care system face while maintaining quality and access to care. Dr. Balakrishnan's current work connects these costs to the outcomes and value of care provided.
    3. Cognitive bias and implicit bias and medical error. Dr. Balakrishnan is working to improve otolaryngology resident and provider education related to the effects of cognitive and implicit bias on medical decision-making, and ways to reduce medical errors related to those biases.
    4. Evidence-based care of vascular anomalies. Dr. Balakrishnan leads a task force of colleagues around the country to develop better scientific evidence to guide the care of challenging vascular anomalies such as lymphatic malformations.
    5. Innovative approaches to pediatric airway reconstruction. Dr. Balakrishnan has studied several minimally invasive endoscopic approaches to airway surgery and is currently developing new robotic techniques to reconstruct the airway.

    Significance to patient care

    Complex and rare conditions such as airway stenosis and vascular malformations greatly impact children's survival and quality of life, but treatment pathways and standardization of care are still lacking. Dr. Balakrishnan hopes that increasing standardization of care and outcome reporting for these conditions will help doctors provide better care for these patients, with reduced costs and a better experience for children and their families and caregivers. Meanwhile, by developing and studying new and potentially better ways to do airway surgery, Dr. Balakrishnan hopes to provide families with innovative options that may better suit their children's needs.

  • Bio-X Affiliated Faculty

    The Huang group employs diverse interdisciplinary methods of inquiry to understand the relationships among cell shape detection, determination, and maintenance in bacteria. Cell shape plays a critical role in regulating many physiological functions, yet little is known about how the wide variety of cell shapes are determined and maintained. Inside the cell, many proteins organize and segregate, but how they detect and respond to the cellular morphology to end up at the right place at the right time is also largely mysterious. The lab utilizes a combination of analytical, computational, and experimental approaches to probe physical mechanisms of shape-related self- organization in protein networks, membranes, and the cell wall.

    Current topics of interest are: (i) cell-wall biosynthesis, (ii) the regulation and mechanics of cell division, (iii) membrane organization, and (iv) membrane-mediated protein interactions. Ultimately, the manipulation of cell shape may provide a direct tool for engineering complex cellular behaviors.

  • Headshot photo of Dr. Johannes Eichstaedt, Assistant Professor of Psychology at Stanford University
    Bio-X Affiliated Faculty

    Dr. Johannes Eichstaedt applies Natural Language Processing and machine learning to social media data to study and measure the psychological states of large populations. His primary focus is the measurement of societal well-being and mental health.

    Dr. Eichstaedt uses Facebook and Twitter to measure the psychological states of large populations and individuals, to determine the thoughts, emotions and behaviors that drive illness, depression or support well-being. AI-based methods allow us to better understand these psychological phenomena, as well as measure their expression unobtrusively and at scale for large populations.  This is especially relevant for the measurement of subjective well-being for populations around the world - in places where no traditional measures are available with sufficient spatial and temporal resolution for public policy.  A key emphasis is on using these data and algorithms for good, to benefit well-being and health (and not sales).

  • Headshot photo of Dr. Julia Kaltschmidt, Associate Professor of Neurosurgery at Stanford University
    Bio-X Affiliated Faculty

    Dr. Julia Kaltschimidt's lab’s goal is to understand the molecular basis of neuronal circuit formation. They are particularly interested in circuits that underlie locomotion, sexual function and gut motility.

    Spinal circuits underlying locomotor function:
    Local inhibitory microcircuits have a fundamental role in shaping animal behavior. In the mammalian spinal cord inhibitory interneurons modulate the sensory-motor signaling that controls locomotion. The lab is using a specific interneuron circuit to understand (i) how distinct neuronal populations are generated, (ii) how these distinct neuronal populations recognize and choose their correct synaptic partners from among different available targets, and (iii) how postsynaptic signals induce the differentiation of presynaptic terminals in service of balanced circuit function.

    Spinal circuitry of sexual function:
    During mammalian copulation, spinal circuits reflexively integrate sexually-specific sensory information. The lab is performing anatomical reconstructions of erectile circuits in the spinal cord, and are analyzing copulatory behavior in males with disrupted interneuron circuitry.

    Enteric nervous system structure and function:
    The enteric nervous system (ENS) in the gut contains more neurons than the spinal cord and presents a translational model relevant to many human illnesses. However, relatively little is known about the development, connectivity and function of ENS circuitry. The mouse ENS is experimentally tractable and allows application of molecular genetic and high-resolution imaging techniques, as well as innovative in vivo experimental approaches. The Kaltschmidt lab aims to (i) map ENS circuit connectivity and (ii) explore functional consequences of ENS circuit abnormalities.

  • Photo of Dr. Gheorghe Chistol, Assistant Professor of Chemical & Systems Biology at Stanford University
    Bio-X Affiliated Faculty

    Dr. Gheorghe Chistol's lab studies how eukaryotic cells replicate their DNA, and how the replication machinery copes with various challenges during this process. They use single-molecule approaches to understand the mechanisms that safeguard the integrity of our genomes, and what happens when these mechanisms fail.


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