My academic training is in biology, immunology, medical and environmental microbiology, and public health epidemiology.
It is an overarching goal to advance scientific understanding at the intersection of molecular epidemiology and systems biology using advanced biotechnologies. One of my primary objectives is to evaluate technology platforms for utility in environmental and public health interventions and provide recommendations to operationalize and scale interventions where merited.
There is a need to apply epidemiological and technology risk analyses to better understand targets for intervention, resource requirements, and data analysis approaches to inform next steps developing and deploying technologies to environmental and public health interventions.
I believe it is in the pubic interest to bring a more robust data-driven public health voice to industry and technology development.
Current Academic and Research Focus Areas
- Public health epidemiology | environmental and infectious disease epidemiology
- Molecular epidemiology | genetic and epigenetic determinants of disease and correlation of disease to environmental exposures
- Medical microbiology | molecular detection and fingerprinting techniques for outbreak and epidemic intelligence gathering
- Systems biology | tissue specific microenvironment gene-expression analyses of interactions with other organisms, chemicals, and environmental exposures
- Risk analysis | risk analyses and risk management for technology-based public health interventions
- Government regulation | policies surrounding integrated regulatory frameworks for biotechnology and genetic engineering
Former Academic Research Institutions
- George Mason University, Department of Global and Community Health | master of public health graduate studies in epidemiology (pending program completion)
- UCSD Scripps Institution of Oceanography, Marine Biology Research Division | independent research: environmental and extremophilic microbiology natural products chemistries for molecular tools, medicines, and bioremediation
- The Scripps Research Institute, Department of Immunology | immunology basic research focused on virology, cancer, and Alzheimer's disease during undergraduate studies
- University of California San Diego, Department of Biology | undergraduate studies in biology
Throughout my career I have leveraged my biomedical and life sciences knowledge to address significant risks to the public health. I was fortunate to gain early basic research experience in immunology and virology in the Neil Cooper Lab at The Scripps Research Institute, Department of Immunology, beginning in 1992 during my undergraduate study in biology at the University California San Diego.
Between 1998 and 2004, I was at Gen-Probe working on HIV blood safety screening and molecular diagnostic tests. I began independent research in 2005 on environmental microbiology and natural product chemistries at the Marine Biology Research Division of the UCSD Scripps Institution of Oceanography.
After working on environmental biothreat detection for the US Intelligence Community in 2008 and my subsequent global health fieldwork experiences in Sub-Saharan Africa, I moved to Washington DC in 2010 to focus on biosecurity and begin my graduate education in public health epidemiology in the Department of Global and Community Health at George Mason University.
As a result of my public health graduate studies and experience advancing genetically engineered technologies for public health, I recognized more enhanced risk analysis and risk management studies are required to successfully deploy interventions while building and maintaining government regulatory support and public trust. I look forward to continued learnings on topic and opportunities to share lessons from my experiences.Big Picture Interests
- Intersecting molecular epidemiology and systems biology approaches to identifying genetic and epigenetic determinants of disease
- Quantitative biomarker testing and medical diagnostics
- Biosecurity and epidemic intelligence programs
- Chemical and biological environmental threat detection systems and sensor technologies
- Quantitative measurements and risk assessments for air and water quality environmental safety testing
- Remediation of environmental contaminants of concern
- Environmental infectious disease vector control
- Emerging technologies in healthcare and environmental biosecurity (e.g. A.I., genetic engineering, gene-editing, biosafety, bioremediation, etc.)