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The Baas Lab Members

 
Peter W. Baas, Professor and Lab Director, Baas Lab Member

Peter W. Baas

Professor and Lab Director
  pwb22@drexel.edu

Dr. Baas (view profile) earned his PhD in 1987 from Michigan State University, and then trained as a postdoctoral fellow at Temple University. From there, he was on the faculty of the University of Wisconsin for ten years before joining the faculty of Drexel University in 2000. Dr. Baas is interested in all aspects of the neuronal cytoskeleton, with a particular emphasis on the regulation of microtubules in developing neurons. He is also interested in various aspects of microtubules during neurodegenerative diseases as well as during nerve injury and regeneration. He is currently the director of the Graduate Program in Neuroscience at Drexel University.


 
Wenqian Yu, Research Instructor, Baas Lab Member

Wenqian Yu

Research Instructor
  wyu@drexelmed.edu

Dr. Yu (view profile) earned her MD from Shanghai Medical University, and then joined the Baas Laboratory in 1993 as a postdoctoral fellow. She has remained in the laboratory since, and is currently a research instructor. She is the chief cell biologist in the laboratory, and is involved in several of the ongoing projects as well as the training of graduate students and postdoctoral fellows. She has published on microtubule transport in the axon, the role of the centrosome in generating axonal microtubules, the regulation of the dendritic microtubule array, the fragmentation of microtubules underlying collateral branch formation, and the role of microtubule-severing proteins and molecular motor proteins in regulating key events in the establishment of neuronal polarity. Dr. Yu is the recipient of the prestigious Edward Jekkal Award.


 
Emanuela Piermarini, Senior Scientist, Baas Lab Member

Emanuela Piermarini

Senior Scientist
  emanuela.piermarini@drexelmed.edu

Emanuela earned her PhD degree in biochemistry and molecular biology at University of Rome "Tor Vergata" in November 2016. During her PhD training she studied the role of oxidative stress in neurodegeneration, focusing her attention on the role of glutathione in the pathogenesis of Friedreich's ataxia. She joined the Baas Lab as a postdoc in December 2016, where she is involved in the project of characterizing a new mouse model of hereditary spastic paraplegia.


 
Koray Kirimtay, Postdoc, Baas Lab Member

Koray Kirimtay

Postdoctoral Fellow
  kk3482@drexel.edu

Koray earned his PhD degree in molecular biology, genetics and biotechnology at Istanbul Technical University in 2021. At the beginning of his PhD, he studied transcriptional regulation of Spastin and Katanin. Additionally, during his PhD, besides generating induced pluripotent stem cell lines of rare neurodegenerative diseases, he also conducted genetic research to identify disease associated mutations and studied their functional relevance with the diseases. He joined the Baas Lab as a postdoc in September 2021, where he will investigate the role of tau in Gulf War Illness, as well as the molecular basis of tau’s role in regulating microtubule stability in neurons.


 
Ankita Patil, Graduate Student, Baas Lab Member

Ankita Patil

Graduate Student
  ap3326@drexel.edu

Ankita is a doctoral student in the Neuroscience program. She earned her BS in life sciences from the University of Mumbai, India, in 2014, and joined Drexel's program in 2015. After completing her MS in the Baas Llab, she is now continuing her work as a PhD student. She is working on motor proteins and their role in microtubule organization in neurons.


 
Shrobona Guha, Graduate Student, Baas Lab Member

Shrobona Guha

Graduate Student
  sg3536@drexel.edu

Shrobona is a doctoral student in the Neuroscience program. She earned her MS in biotechnology from St. Xavier's College, Kolkata, India. After her MS, she worked on the neuronal circuit development of zebrafish for a year at IISER Pune. In the Baas Lab, she will be working on motor proteins and their role in microtubule organization in neurons.


 
Xaohuan (Beanie) Sun, Doctoral Student, Baas Lab Member

Xaohuan (Beanie) Sun

Graduate Student
  xs77@drexel.edu

Xaohuan (Beanie) Sun is a doctoral student in the Neuroscience program at Drexel University. She earned her MS in biology from Nantong University, China. As a visiting student, she spent 1.5 years in the Baas Lab during her MS, studying tau function in neurons, specifically the role of tau in regulating microtubule stability in the axon. For her doctoral work, she is expanding these studies into studies on tau in neurodegenerative diseases, using neurons differentiated from human induced pluripotent cells.


 
Kendra Case, Graduate Student, Baas Lab Member

Kendra Case

Graduate Student
  klc356@drexel.edu

Kendra is a doctoral student in the Neuroscience program. She earned her BS in Biology with minors in Neuroscience and Psychology from Drexel University in 2018. Post-graduation she worked in the lab of Denise Garcia at Drexel and studied a subpopulation of astrocytes during development. In the Baas lab she will join the Gulf War Illness project, continuing to investigate tau in GWI.


 
Angela Altadonna, Research Technician, Baas Lab Member

Angela Altadonna

Research Technician
  aja54@drexel.edu

Angela earned her MS in Histotechnology from Drexel University and is now a Research Technician in the Baas Lab, focusing mainly on the Hereditary Spastic Paraplegia Project.


Former Lab Members (Recent)

 
┼×eyma Akarsu, Visiting Graduate Student, Baas Lab Member

┼×eyma Akarsu

Visiting Graduate Student


 
Timothy Austin, Graduate Student, Baas Lab Member

Timothy Austin

Graduate Student


 
Silvia Fernandes, Graduate Student, Baas Lab Member

Silvia Fernandes

Graduate Student


 
Ilgin Isiltan, Visiting Graduate Student, Baas Lab Member

Ilgin Isiltan

Visiting Graduate Student


 
Andrew Matamoros, Graduate Student, Baas Lab Member

Andrew Matamoros

Graduate Student


 
Hemalatha Muralidharan, Graduate Student, Baas Lab Member

Hemalatha Muralidharan

Graduate Student


 
Alessia Niceforo, Visiting Graduate Student, Baas Lab Member

Alessia Niceforo

Visiting Graduate Student


 
Liang Qiang, Research Instructor, Baas Lab Member

Liang Qiang

Research Instructor


 
Joanna Solowska, Senior Scientist, Baas Lab Member

Joanna Solowska

Senior Scientist


 
Qinghua Wang, Visiting Scholar Fellow, Baas Lab Member

Qinghua Wang

Visiting Scholar Fellow


 
Philip Yates, MD/PhD Student, Baas Lab Member

Philip Yates

MD/PhD Student


 
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Baas Lab researchers used electron tomography to construct a 3D model (bottom), and found that whereas most microtubules (green) are attached to the centrosome (blue), a small number are unattached. The unattached microtubules are able to undergo motor-driven sliding, which helps neurons migrate in a straight line.