Principal Investigator

Mitchell Guttman

Professor, Division of Biology and Biological Engineering, Caltech;
Associate Director, UCLA-Caltech Medical Scientist Training Program (MD-PhD program);
Robertson Investigator, New York Stem Cell Foundation;
Investigator, Heritage Medical Research Institute

Mitch Guttman is a Professor of Biology in the Division of Biology and Biological Engineering at the California Institute of Technology (Caltech). He received his PhD from the Department of Biology at MIT where he worked with Eric Lander at the Broad Institute of MIT and Harvard. He established his lab as an independent Fellow at the Broad Institute of MIT and Harvard prior to joining the faculty at Caltech in June 2013. He is currently an Investigator at the Heritage Medical Research Institute and a Robertson Investigator of the New York Stem Cell Foundation. He is a recipient of numerous scientific honors and awards including the NIH Director’s Early Independence Award, Pew-Steward scholar in Cancer Research, a Searle Scholar, Ben Barres Early Career Investigator at the Chan Zuckerberg Initiative, and is the recipient of the Wilson S. Stone Memorial Award from the MD Anderson Cancer Center in recognition of his “outstanding contribution to biomedical research” and a 2020 NIH Director’s Transformative Research Award.

 

Postdocs

Joanna Jachowicz

Postdoc

B.S., M.S. Biology; M.S. Psychology, Warsaw University;
Ph.D. Molecular Biology, Strasbourg University

Joanna is studying non-coding DNA and RNAs in early mammalian development and reprogramming, specifically how they regulate 3D genome organization and gene expression. Specifically, she is studying the Xist lncRNA with the goal of dissecting molecular mechanisms controlling Xist-triggered gene silencing and working to develop single cell tools to study 3D DNA and RNA interactions in the nucleus.

jjach@caltech.edu

Jamie Wangen

Postdoc

B.A. Biology/Chemistry, St. Olaf College;
Ph.D. Biochemistry, Cellular, and Molecular Biology, Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine

Jamie is investigating the role played by RNA in coordinating nuclear compartments to regulate transcription.

jwangen@lncrna.caltech.edu

Graduate Students

Prashant Bhat

MD/PhD Graduate Student, Biology

B.A. University of California, Berkeley

Prashant is studying how sites of RNA processing (e.g nucleoli, nuclear speckles, histone locus bodies, and Cajal bodies) are compartmentalized in 3D structures within the nucleus in the context of normal physiology and disease. He maps the spatial compartmentalization of active genes at nuclear speckles and investigates the resulting impact this has on the kinetic efficiency of RNA splicing.

Google Scholar | pbhat@lncrna.caltech.edu

Paulomi Bhattacharya

Graduate Student, Bioengineering

B.S. Massachusetts Inst. of Technology (MIT)

Paulomi is investigating nuclear changes that result from RNA-mediated toxicity in amyotrphic lateral sclerosis (ALS). She is developing a scalable, high-throughput technology that allows the multiplexed detection of proteins in complex with other proteins, DNA, and RNA in the nucleus to better understand mechanics of neurodegeneration.

pbhattacharya@lncrna.caltech.edu

Linlin Chen

Graduate Student, Bioengineering

B.A. Wellesley College

Linlin is working to make protein targeting more accessible by developing a pipeline for discovery and screening of new affinity reagents in a rapid, inexpensive manner. This will allow us to better target and understand protein complexes and interactions.

Google Scholar | lchen3@lncrna.caltech.edu

Noah Epstein

Graduate Student, Biology

B.S. University of California, Berkeley

Noah is investigating the regulatory function and biophysical properties of phase-separated protein compartments in cell nuclei. He is developing a method to profile nucleic acid content and stoichiometry in compartments formed by proteins of interest.

nepstein@caltech.edu

Isabel Goronzy

MD/PhD Graduate Student, BMB

B.S. Stanford University

Isabel is investigating compartmentalization of the nucleus and the role of nuclear organization in transcription and RNA processing. She designs computational and experimental tools to understand the functional consequences of complex, multi-way interactions of DNA, RNA and proteins within the nucleus.

igoronzy@lncrna.caltech.edu

Jimmy K. Guo

MD/PhD Graduate Student, Biology

B.A. University of California, Berkeley

Jimmy is developing high-throughput genomic tools to study direct, multi-way DNA and RNA interactions.

Google Scholar | jguo@lncrna.caltech.edu

Drew Honson

Graduate Student, Biology

B.S. University of Minnesota, Twin Cities

Drew is studying X-chromosome counting and choice, the process by which a female mammalian cell determines which X-chromosome remains active and which is silenced. X-chromosome counting is poorly understood and requires a complex interplay of nuclear architecture, non-coding RNAs, and regulatory proteins.

Google Scholar | dhonson@lncrna.caltech.edu

Andrew Perez

Graduate Student, Biology

B.S. California State University, Fullerton

Andrew is developing new, high-throughput, genome wide, technologies to study RNA, DNA, and nuclear proteins simultaneously. Once established, these technologies will be used to understand how RNA and DNA work with proteins to influence nuclear structure, gene expression, and cell identity.

Orcid  |  aaperez@lncrna.caltech.edu

Mackenzie Strehle

Graduate Student, Biology

B.S. University of Nebraska, Lincoln

Mackenzie is investigating how the lncRNA Xist interacts with a variety of protein effector molecules to mediate X chromosome inactivation in female mammals. She uses molecular biology, cell biology, and genomics approaches to understand how these RNA-protein interactions lead to stable, chromosome-wide silencing.

Google Scholar | mstrehle@lncrna.caltech.edu

Undergrad Students

Wesley Huang

Undergraduate Student

Wesley is studying the highly conserved lncRNA Malat1, which is hypothesized to play a role in regulating transcription and splicing. Dysregulation of Malat1 is associated with many cancers, though its exact molecular function is unknown. Wesley is using genomic methods to uncover the molecular mechanisms by which Malat1 functions.

whuang@lncrna.caltech.edu

Research
Staff

Amy Chow

Senior Research Scientist

B.S. Arizona State University;
Ph.D. Yale University

Amy is investigating functional and cell biological outcomes following perturbations of RNA-protein interactions found to be important from other studies within the group. Most commonly, she uses mouse embryonic stem cells as a model system, with genomic targeting carried out by CRISPR-Cas9 strategies.

Google Scholar  |  achow@caltech.edu

Mario R. Blanco

Research Scientist

B.S. Biochemstry, Florida State University;
Ph.D. Cell and Molecular Biology, University of Michigan

Mario is working to develop and implement methods that can help us understand the role of RNA-protein interactions in gene regulation.

Google Scholar  |  mblanco@lncrna.caltech.edu

Olivia Ettlin

Lab Technician-Assistant

B.S. University of California, Los Angeles

Olivia is working with several members of the lab to support their work on RNA-protein interactions. She generates valuable data that furthers the group’s research progress.

oettlin@caltech.edu

Our Team

We are an integrated team of experimental and computational biologists who work together to understand how lncRNAs control gene expression programs and cell state decisions.

We believe that the strength of our science arises from the diversity of our ideas and experiences. We welcome students, postdocs, and visiting scholars from all backgrounds to join our group.

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Join Us!

Alumni

Post Docs

Peter Chovanec
Postdoctoral Scholar, UCLA

Noah Ollikainen
Senior Computational Scientist, National Institutes of Health

Tony Szempruch
Senior Scientist, Cell Biology, Pfizer

Vlad Grishkevich
Senior Scientist, Celsius Therapeutics

Colleen McHugh
Assistant Professor, University of California, San Diego (Department of Biochemistry)

Graduate Students

Abhik Banerjee
Keck School of Medicine of USC

Sofia Quinodoz
HHMI Hanna Gray Fellow, Princeton University (Brangwynne lab)

Chun-Kan Chen
Helen Hay Whitney Fellow, Stanford University (Howard Chang lab)

Jesse Engreitz
Assistant Professor, Stanford University (Department of Genetics)

Research Staff

Dev Majumdar
Assitant Professor, M.D. College of Medicine at The University of Vermont

Ward Walkup
Senior Research Scientist, Casma Therapeutics

Charlotte Lai
Aurora Electrolysis

Pamela Russell
Principal Bioinformatics Engineer, Fulcrum Genomics

Patrick McDonel
Director, Applied Biology Team Lead, Dyno Therapeutics