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Lab Members

Principal Investigator

Graduate Students


Christina Brock, PhD; to be conferred on August 2017

Christina graduated from Texas A&M University in 2011 with a Bachelor of Science in Molecular and Cell Biology. Her thesis work centers around the characterization of vonWillebrand Factor A domain containing proteins of B. burgdorferi and the application of these proteins as novel Lyme disease vaccine candidates.


Amer Fadhl, DVM; PhD student

Amer graduated from College of Veterinary Medicine, Baghdad University, Iraq in 1993 with a Bachelor of Veterinary Medicine and Surgery. He worked for large animal hospitals before he rejoined the College of Veterinary, Baghdad in 2006. He received his MS in Vet. Parasitology from the same university in 2011. At Texas A&M University, his PhD program started with molecular and morphological characterization of a haemoparasite in both wildlife and livestock animals. By his second year, he conducted several Babesia spp. cultivation and cryopreservation projects. His current thesis focuses on genotyping of Babesia bovis and B.bigemina.


Wisam Hassan; PhD student

Wisam graduated with his Bachelor of Veterinary Medicine & Surgery in 2003 and his Masters in Internal and Preventive Veterinary Medicine in 2008 at the College of Veterinary Medicine, University of Mosul, Iraq. Wisam is in his third year and his research focus is working on the development of subunit vaccine against Lyme disease


Annah Lee, MPH; PhD student

Annah graduated from University of California, Davis in 2011 with a Bachelor of Science in Animal Science. She worked in the biotech industry for a few years before going to Colorado State University for her Master in Public Health. She is a first year doctoral student focusing on pathogen-detection in mammalian tissue, focusing on Borrelia spp, Rickettsia spp, and Ehrlichia spp for sequence analysis.


Joseph Modarelli; PhD student

Joseph graduated from Texas A&M University in 2012 with a Bachelor of Science in Biomedical Science. He is a third year doctoral student focusing on the development of a molecular tool that aims to detect the presence of 12 agents responsible for causing Borreliosis, Anaplasmosis, Rickettsiosis, Ehrlichiosis, and Babesiosis in animal samples. His research is utilizing a novel LayerPlexing real-time PCR methodology that could potentially screen an animal for all 12 pathogens simultaneously by utilizing a single DNA sample.


Mackenzie Tietjen; PhD student, Entomology

Mackenzie graduated from Brigham Young University-Idaho in 2014 with a Bachelor of Science in Zoology. After her undergraduate degree, she worked for a year at Deer Flat National Wildlife Refuge in Idaho. She is a second year PhD student and works in both the Lyme lab and the Medina lab in the Entomology Department. She is conducting research on the population genetics, behavior, and phenology of Ixodes scapularis.


Undergraduate Students


LabPhoto_Helen Helen Chen
Picture Coming Soon! Ryan Garland
LabPhoto_Kristen Kristen Jansen
Picture Coming Soon! Jaisal Patel

Former Undergraduate Students

  • Gabi Castellanos, Biomedical Science
  • Elaine Wood, Biology
  • Juang Mee "Mee-A" Pavey, Mathematics
  • Alexandra Brown, Biomedical Science
  • Juan Gomez, Cellular and Molecular Biology
  • Joseph Modarelli, Biomedical Science
  • Erin McGregor, Biomedical Science
  • Brandon Nettles
  • Robert Chouffot
  • Ross Wittenborn
  • Thomas Reeve, Biomedical Science
  • Annie Waite, Biomedical Science
  • Brittany McCune, Biomedical Science
  • Brian Doss, Biomedical Science

Former Visiting Undergraduate Scholars (Air Force Academy)

  • Stone Frankford
  • Hillary Perkins
  • John White

Former Visiting Scholars

  • Lais Sanseverino
  • Jiannan Liu
  • Shakirat Adetunji
  • Jaqueline Matias
  • Eman Hassan

Former Graduate Students

  • Dhwani Khotari, Masters in Public Health

Former Post-Doctorates

  • Pam Ferro, PhD
  • Carolina Sosa Gutierrez, DVM, PhD