Evandro F. Fang, Ph.D. (CUHK), PI (2017.10-present)
Email: evandrofeifang [at] yahoo.com; e.f.fang [at] medisin.uio.no
Evandro is a molecular gerontologist and runs a research lab aimed at understanding the molecular mechanisms of human aging. His team uses bench-top knowledge to guide the development of novel interventional strategies towards human aging, with a final goal of improving the quality of life in the elderly. He is passionate about teaching and training junior scientists.
Hobbies: Badminton; Soccer; Hiking; Cycling.
Thale Dawn Patrick-Brown, MSc, MIET, PPT, Lab manager (2021.03-)
Email: thale [at] orthrus.no
Thale started her research career last century at the precocious age of 12, when she took up her first post as a summer research assistant, pulling catheters, packing and autoclaving surgical equipment and assisting with things requiring small fingers. Eventually, she graduated from lower school and obtained an honours degree in Neuroscience studying under the profs who literally wrote the book (Kolb and Whishaw), who likely only remember her as that lass whose senior project proposed a neural network for diagnosis of psychiatrically-relevant changes in the brain using fMRI before such things were computationally possible (she got a D). Thale completed an eye-watering three full undergraduate theses in Foetal Physiology, Aerospace Neurophysiology, and 11-Beta Hydroxysteroid Dehydrogenase Type 1&2 in foetal development respectively. Thale recently published a paper describing a novel statistical methodology for the estimation of prevalence and incidence in rare diseases using Pseudomyxoma peritonei (PMP) as a model. She has undertaken specialist training in gross anatomy and is interested in the role of the HPA axis in physiological activities, including parturition and metastatic disease. Thale is a professional medical project manager and can usually be found staring intently at a computer screen, muttering incoherently about grammar.
Interests: Thale is a licensed race driver and sports therapist, plays polo and is terminally British.
Sofie H. Lautrup, Ph.D. (Aarhus University, Denmark), Postdoc Fellow (2018-present)
Email: s.h.lautrup [at] medisin.uio.no
During her PhD program, Dr Lautrup studied the connections between the DNA repair pathway base excision repair (BER) and cognitive capacity during aging and disease, under the supervision of Associated Professor Tinna Stevnsner at Aarhus University, Denmark. In addition, she has worked with premature aging by characterising two Danish patients suffering from Cockayne Syndrome (MAD 2018). Dr Lautrup also worked in the laboratory of Dr Vilhelm A. Bohr at National Institute on Aging, Baltimore, USA during her PhD programme. At NIA, she examined the effect of treatment with the NAD+ precursor Nicotinamide Riboside (NR) on different Alzheimer’s disease (AD) mouse models, including a DNA repair deficient AD mouse model (PNAS, 2018). Furthermore, she worked on elucidating the effects of treatments with mitophagy-inducing compounds on an AD mouse model. In the Fang laboratory, she is very interested in studying how NAD+ supplementation affects features seen during both normal aging and premature aging including reduced stem cell proliferation and premature senescence. Dr Lautrup utilises fly-models (Drosophila Melanogaster) of the premature aging disorder Werner Syndrome (WS), in addition to C. elegans and human iPSCs, to elucidate how WS patients show reductions of stem cells and how this is related to compromised mitophagy.
Hobbies: Hiking/exploring the nature, being a scout, hanging out with friends/family.
Maria Jose Donate Lagartos, Ph.D. (University of Castilla-La Mancha, Spain), Postdoc Fellow (2019.11-)
Email: m.j.l.donate [at] medisin.uio.no
I did my PhD with Professor Ricardo Insausti at the University of Castilla-La Mancha, working on the characterisation of age-dependent changes in the interneuron populations in the hippocampus of two murine models, SAMP8 and Pol mu mice. Later, I become a postdoctoral fellow in Professor Menno Witter’s group at the Kavli Institute for Systems Neuroscience/Centre for Neural Computation in Trondheim (Norway), NTNU. The research project I carried out in this laboratory was focused on the postnatal development of the postrhinal cortex to the medial entorhinal cortex projection. During my years as a PhD student and a post-doc, I learned anatomy, intracellular injections, tracing, and several electrophysiological approaches including anterograde tracing, intracellular injections, confocal imaging, VSD-imaging, patch-clamp, and optogenetics. Currently, I am a postdoctoral fellow in Dr Evandro F. Fang’s laboratory and I am interested in studying lysosome pathway in Alzheimer´s disease (AD) by the use of a unique cross-species platform, involving C. elegans, mouse models and human iPSCs.
Hobbies: Reading, hiking, movies, tai-chi, martial arts.
Janet Jian-ying Zhang, Ph.D. (Sun Yat-sen University, China), Postdoc Researcher (2021.02-)
Email: zhjianying [at] gmail.com
Dr Zhang got her PhD degree in Clinical Science of Stomatology from Sun Yat-sen University, China in 2016. After graduation, she became a licensed dentist in China, while working as a researcher at Central South University. Dr Zhang is fascinated with observing the progression of life from tiny cells up to a well crafted tooth via all kinds of experimental microscopies as well as her favorite dental operating microscope. In the Fang lab, Dr Zhang is devoted to unveiling the causes of delirium and how it progresses to Alzheimer’s disease via examination of several possible molecular mechanisms.
Hobbies: Travel, gourmet lover, work out
Shuqin Cao, visiting Ph.D candidate (2020.02-2022.01), postdoc fellow (2022.02-present)
Email: queenaqin27 [at] gmail.com
Shu holds a bachelor degree from The University of Malaya, Malaysia, and did a PhD programme in Clinical Biochemistry and Molecular Medicine at the Chulalongkorn University, Thailand. She was working as a visiting student in the Fang lab (UiO) from Feb 2020 to Jan 2022 and finished her PhD thesis in the Fang lab and defended her PhD in Oslo via zoom. Her PhD project was focused on the identification of potential anti-AD drug candidates from natural molecules isolated from Thai medicine. In her postdoc programme, she is continuing in depth characterization of a few novel mitophagy inducers she has identified during her PhD period. She is also working on NAD+ and TFEB in AD.
Hobbies: Exploring the world, Snorkelling, Hiking, Yoga, Belly dance
Manuele Novello, PhD (ErasmusMC, Erasmus University of Rotterdam, Netherlands), Postdoc Fellow (2023 – present)
Email: manuele.novello01 [at] universitadipavia.it
Manuele did his PhD in the lab of Professor Chris De Zeeuw at the ErasmusMC of Rotterdam, under the supervision of Dr. Laurens Bosman. During his PhD, he investigated cerebellar connectivity with the cerebral cortex and brainstem structures in mouse models, in healthy and disease conditions. During this period he learned to perform electrophysiological, behavioral, and histological analysis. After his PhD, he joined the Evandro Fang group. He wants to investigate the chaperone-mediated mitophagy pathway in normal aging and Alzheimer’s disease (AD) in human brain samples and mouse models. Moreover, he wishes to analyse which compounds or drugs may restore such pathways.
Hobbies: Hiking, running, tennis, reading, photography.
Tomás Schmauck-Medina, MSc Neuroscience (UCL, UK), Lab engineer (2020.10-2021.03) then Ph.D. student (2021.04- )
Email: tschmauck [at] gmail.com
Tomás is interested in the mechanisms of ageing and age-related neurodegenerative diseases. After his bachelor degree in Biomedicine he went to University College London (UCL) to study Neuroscience and worked on ageing in the laboratory of Professor Dame Linda Partridge. At UCL, he studied the neuroprotective role of GADD45 in ALS. In the Fang laboratory at the University of Oslo (UiO), he is interested in the mechanisms of ageing, autophagy, mitophagy, and how they impact neurodegeneration, with a focus on Alzheimer’s disease. He is using C. elegans, mice, and iPSCs in combination with CRISPR and confocal microscopy techniques to address related questions.
Hobbies: Writing, debating, real-time strategy games
Junping Pan, PhD (Jinan University, China), Postdoc Fellow (2022.9 – present)
Email: panjunpingjnu319 [at] 163.com
Junping obtained his Master’s degree from the Neuropharmacology Department of Jinan University under the supervision of Professor Huanmin Luo in 2018. He is mainly engaged in research on how methyl 3,4-dihydroxybenzoate induces neural stem cells to differentiate into cholinergic neurons in vitro. Junping worked in the Neurosurgery Department of Guangdong Women and Children’s Medical Center in 2019. He received doctoral degree in immunology from the School of Basic Medical Sciences, Jinan University under the supervision of Professor Guobing Chen and Evandro F. Fang in 2022. His PhD project was focused on ULK1 abrogation of memory loss and pathologies in 5XFAD and hTau.P301S murine models of Alzheimer’s disease. In his postdoc programme, he is continuing to study the mechanics of ULK1 in AD and the role of ULK1 in healthy aging. He is also studying the role of traditional Chinese medicine in inducing mitophagy to improve AD.
Hobbies: Hiking, boxing, swimming, gourmet cooking.
Caroline Shi-qi Zhang, MSc ( China Medical University, China), Ph.D. student (2021.05-)
Email: zhangshiqi5251 [at] outlook.com
Caroline has a Master of Science degree from the China Medical University, China. During this period she did a one-year internship program with Professor Clifford Woolf’s lab at the Harvard Medical School/Boston Children’s Hospital, USA. At Harvard, her research was mainly focused on developing an ALS-associated human motor neuron model of mutant ¬TDP-43 for genome-wide CRISPR screens. In the Fang lab at the University of Oslo (UiO), she is focusing on mechanistic studies of Alzheimer´s disease (AD), with a focus on ApoE4, NAD+, and autophagy/mitophagy. She uses a cross-species approach, covering human iPSC-derived neurons and glial cells, nematodes, mice, and postmortem brain tissue from individuals affected with AD to address related questions.
Hobbies: TV shows, writing.
Alice Ruixue Ai, Ph.D candidate (2021.05-)
Email: ruixue.ai [at] outlook.com
Alice Ruixue Ai studied in oral medicine from Sichuan University, China. During her Masters period, she investigated microenvironmental regulation of the progression of potentially malignant oral disorders towards malignancy; she published four papers in international peer-reviewed journals during this time. With the Fang lab and their collaborators, she is applying artificial intelligence to the screening and designing of drug candidates for ageing and Alzheimer’s disease. She is also very interested in studying the role of mRNA splicing in NAD+-mitophagy axis and age-dependent mitophagy changes in AD.
Hobbies: Traditional Chinese painting and yoga.
Alexander (Sasha) Anisimov, MSc ( Saint Petersburg State University, Russia), Ph.D. student (2021.09-)
Email: sasha.anisimof [at] yandex.ru; alexander.anisimov1997 [at] gmail.com; aleksandr.anisimov [at] studmed.uio.no
Alexander (Sasha) Anisimov received his Master’s degree from Saint Petersburg State University, Russia, working with the Institute of Cytology of the Russian Academy of Sciences in the cell stress mechanisms laboratory. Alexander investigated the role of HSP70 protein in AD and worked on the study of the effectiveness of inducers of heat shock proteins and the modification of these compounds. He is interested in studying the mechanisms of protein homeostasis and its decline in aging, autophagy and mitophagy deficits in AD. He is also interested in the development of new therapeutic strategies for Alzheimer’s disease and the search for potential neuroprotective agents..
Hobbies: My own project: https://campion.ai, running, chess.
He-ling Wang, MDS, DDS, student
Email: helingwang.med [at] gmail.com
Heling holds a Bachelor’s degree in Medicine and a Masters degree in Oral Medicine from Jilin University, China. During her Masters, she completed a one-year internship program at Okayama University, Japan, where she received training in microbiota, focusing her research mainly on microbiota related-diseases. In the Fang lab at the University of Oslo (UiO), she is focusing on mechanistic studies of Alzheimer´s disease (AD), with focus on ApoE4, NAD+, and autophagy/mitophagy. She will also conduct research on microbiota and AD to address related questions.
Hobbies: Documentary, swimming，gourmet
Name: Ping-Jie Wang, MSc, PhD Student, ZhengZhou University (2021.09 – )
Email: wpj0405 [at] 163.com
Ping-jie received her Master’s degree in Neurobiology from Jinan University’s Guangdong-Hong Kong-Macao Institute of Central Nervous System (CNS) Regeneration (GHMICR) under Professor Kwok-Fai So. She is mainly engaged in research on the mechanism of adiponectin-mediated exercise to improve symptoms of depression. She is very interested in the mechanism of neurodegenerative diseases, and is carrying out her PhD project in the Fang laboratory, where she will mainly study the mechanism of Alzheimer’s disease, focusing on ULK1, NAD+ and mitophagy.
Hobbies: Hiking, jogging, yoga.
Jared Rice, Student (2021)
Email: jaredcr [at] student.ibv.uio.no
Jared earned his BSc in Biology with emphasis on Molecular Biology from the College of Charleston, South Carolina. He completed a capstone in phage informatics and was selected by his alma mater to represent them at the Howard Hughes Medical Institute SEA-PHAGE symposium. Jared worked a year in a Covid-19 analysis and diagnosis laboratory at the height of the 2020 pandemic. Currently he is working towards his MSc in Bioscience on the Molecular Biology and Biochemistry track at the University of Oslo. He joins the Fang lab with a long-standing interest in exploring endogenous retroviral/infectious viral impacts on the molecular mechanisms of aging and has aspirations of restoring vitality in geriatric populations.
Hobbies: Cooking, riichi-mahjong, scuba diving, exercise, mentoring, urban explorationeries and traveling.
Erica Caci Back, MSc Student (01-2023 to 05-2023)
Email: ericacback [at] gmail.com
Erica has a bachelor’s degree in chemistry. In the fall of 2022, she started the last year of her masters degree in chemistry and biotechnology with specialisation in molecular biology at the Norwegian University of Life Sciences. She is completing her Master’s thesis project in the Fang lab from January to May 2023, during which she will be investigating mechanisms of autophagy and the effect of interventions such as rapamycin on lifespan and healthspan of C. elegans worms.
Hobbies: Hiking and other outdoor activities, exercise, and reading.
Sifang Liao, Ph.D. (Stockholm University), Postdoc Fellow (2018-present)
Email: sifang.liao [at ]medisin.uio.no
Sifang obtained his doctoral degree from the Zoology Department of Stockholm University under the supervision of professor Dick Nässel in 2018. During his Ph.D. studies, he became interested in examining the role of insulin signaling pathways and environmental conditions on aging in the fruit fly, Drosophila melanogaster. After his doctorate, he worked as a postdoc in the Department of Neuroscience, Functional Pharmacology, Uppsala University, under the supervision of Helgi Schiöth for two years. There he studied the effects of environmental pollutants on neuroendocrine function. As a researcher, he worked in Tor Erick’s lab to screen tumor microenvironment factors affecting tumor growth. Currently, he is a postdoc in the Fang laboratory, where he collaborates with Professor Nilsson at the Karolinska Institute, Sweden, to study the effects of mitophagy on inflammation in Alzheimer’s disease, with mice as the model organism.
Hobbies: Badminton, Ping-Pong, swimming, hiking.
Nina Alaburic, MSc Student (03-2023 – 12-2024)
Email: ninaalaburic01 [at ] gmail.com
Nina is a third year medical student at the University of Oslo who is interested in biology and chemistry. She is especially interested in the fields of evolution, genetics, and genomics, as well as pharmacology and personalised medicine. She will be working with her daily mentor Alexander (Sasha) Anisimov looking into the development of combined drug applications to treat Alzheimer’s disease. She will be using C. elegans as the major model system for her experiments.
Hobbies: Listening to 80’s music, trying new foods, running and drawing.