REINHARD HINTERLEITNER, PHD
Dr. Reinhard Hinterleitner is the principal investigator of the lab. Reinhard studied Biotechnology at the University of Applied Sciences in Vienna. He received his PhD from the Medical University of Innsbruck where he worked on T cell signaling and cancer immunotherapies in the lab of Prof. Gottfried Baier. In 2013, Reinhard joined the lab Prof. Bana Jabri at the University of Chicago where he performed his Postdoctoral research on the intestinal immune system. Reinhard joined the University of Pittsburgh, Department of Immunology in 2018, where he leads his own lab trying to understand the crosstalk between intestinal microbes and the host mucosal immune system.
In his free-time Reinhard likes to travel and is up to all kinds of outdoor adventures. He is also eager to try all kinds of foods including insects.
SURYA PANDEY, PHD
Since my master degree I have been fascinated by the intricacy and complexity of the immune system. With this passion, I pursued my PhD from National Centre for Cell Science, India in 2014. For my post-doctoral study, I moved to Yale University where I investigated the mechanisms of mucosal immunity during inflammation and infection in mouse models. My future goal is to delve deep understanding of intestinal mucosal immunity in gastrointestinal disorders, food allergy, and infections.
Fun: Driving is my favorite thing and to go where I’ve never been! And ohh.. of course, partying with friends!
ARIADNA SOTO, PHD
Ariadna is a post-doctoral student from Argentina. She studied biotechnology at the National University of San Martin in Buenos Aires, where she also received her PhD degree, studying a serine-protease inhibitor from Toxoplasma gondii (TgPI-1) as a new immunomodulatory molecule for the development of asthma therapies.
Ariadna's future goal is to become a scientific leader in the field of mucosal immunology. At the Hinterlaitner lab, Ariadna will study the immunomodulatory functions of commensal colonizing protists in health and disease, particularly focusing on IBD.Fun fact: When Ariadna was a child, she was afraid of opening her eyes under water, but then she turned into a high-performance swimmer. As an Argetinian, Ariadna knows and loves to make asado on the weekends.
LUZMARIEL MEDINA SANCHEZ, B.S.
Luzmariel Medina is a PhD student currently pursuing a degree in Microbiology and Immunology through the University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine. Her research interest is primarily in understanding how gut microbes impact the host mucosal immune responses. She received her Bachelor of Science degree from the University of Puerto Rico in Aguadilla. Prior to moving to Pittsburgh, she did a PREP program at the University of Michigan in Dr. Jason Weinberg laboratory. Fun facts: Luzmariel speaks fluently two languages, enjoys to kayak and her favorite holiday is Halloween!
LEE HEDDEN, B.S.
Interests - I became a microbiologist by degree because I am fascinated by the world of interactions that are continually occurring in and around us that we can not see. I became a molecular cellular biologist by trade which I have enjoyed for the same reason. Outside the lab I enjoy most outdoor activities, video games, and sitting around doing nothing while watching TV.
Fun ? fact - I have traveled across the United States by car several times, and I have lived in seven different states; in cities ranging in population from 500 people to over 17 million.
CLARISSE ENGL, B.S.
I am a Masters student from Germany, and I am currently working on my thesis about the impact and interactions of protozoa on and with the host immune system in health and disease. I received my Bachelor of Science at the Medical University of Innsbruck, which is where I will receive my Masters following my thesis completion in the MR Laboratory. Prior to coming to Pittsburgh, I worked for the Department of Virology in Innsbruck as a student assistant for 6 months alongside my studies.
Fun fact: I love dogs and know nearly every dog breed by heart!