Western University of Health Sciences College of Veterinary Medicine Western University of Health Sciences
College of Veterinary Medicine

CVM Research Technical Support

Hannah Mirrashed, PhD – Research Laboratory Manager

PhD, Carleton University, Ottawa, Canada, 2007
MSc, Carleton University, Ottawa, Canada, 1999

I am a research scientist with more than 5 years of experience in research. Throughout this experience, I was given the opportunity to co-author six peer-reviewed publications and develop skills in a variety of fields, including Molecular Biology, Microbiology, Mycology, Biotherapeutics, organization management and regulation.

I completed a B.Sc. in Microbiology, followed by a M.Sc. and Ph.D. in Molecular Bio/Chemical sciences with a specialization in Biotherapeutics and Pharmacokinetics.  During my two post-doctoral positions, I have focused my research on environmental issues such as biological wastewater treatment and risk assessment of microbial contaminants and data generation on microbial consortia stability and Ecotoxicology.

During my B.Sc. in Microbiology, I obtained experience in quality assurance in veterinary sciences and animal pharmacotoxicology by evaluating and analyzing biological and veterinary drugs and vaccines in a Drug Quality Control Laboratory.  My graduate work initially focused on the use of large-scale techniques to study fungal populations and their distributions world-wide. I investigated molecular genetic variation in fungal populations (M.Sc.), yeast proteomics and gene expression profiles in response to plant-derived antimicrobial macromolecules. This approach improved bioactive herbal compounds, contributing to the development and optimization of pharmaceutical agents (Pharmacokinetics) (Ph.D).

In addition, prior to my current position, I worked as a research associate in the Food science and Nutrition division at Carleton University from Sep 2011- Feb 2012. My research focused on nutrigenomics and interdisciplinary studies of novel antimicrobial bioactive compounds from natural products.  The research focuses on the mode of action of two major antioxidants and anti-inflammatory compounds; (1) Alkylresorcinols (phenolic acids) in cereal bran and (2) melatonin in sour cherries, in food and biological membranes in vitro.   The results improved our understanding of the relationship between these natural compounds and their function in living microorganisms.



Jane Cho, PhD, MS- Laboratory technician

PhD, University of California, Irvine, Irvine, CA  2011
MS, Chungnam National University, Daejeon, South Korea, 1998

I have been involved with research since my freshmen year of college and have accumulated many skills and experiences in research. I received my MS and BS in microbiology, studying the stress response in Schizosaccharomyces pombe.  I recently graduated with a PhD from the Department of Developmental and Cell Biology of UC Irvine.  My research focused on the mechanisms of  gene regulation in response to a specific BMP (Bone Morphogenic protein) signaling that is known to be crucial for patterning and growth in Fruit flies.  During my graduate studies, I have taught multiple labs and discussion groups of many levels. I joined Western University in January 2011, and currently spent most of my time in the stem cell laboratory on the 4th floor of HEC.

Some of my research skills are summarized below:


José Santiago Aguilar, PhD-Research Technician

PhD, Universidad Complutense, Madrid, 1981.
BSc, Universidad Complutense, Madrid, 1977.

I have extensive research experience in Molecular and Cell Biology. My research has resulted in the publication of over fifty papers in peer-reviewed journals.  Before joining WesternU, I have worked in different research institutions in the USA (Northwestern, U. Illinois at Chicago, U. California Irvine) and abroad (Instuto Cajal, Madrid; Instituto Eduardo DeRobertis, Buenos Aires; Bath University, UK).   During this research work, I have trained many graduate and undergraduate students publishing their work in peer-review journals.

My research work has focused mainly on cell membrane receptor interactions and signaling. I have carried out studied on different membrane G protein coupled receptors (cholinergic muscarinic, adenosine). A hallmark of these studies was the development of a novel system to generate proteo-liposomes and utilize it to study receptor interactions with membrane proteins.  I have also studied ionotropic receptors (cholinergic nicotinic, GABA). A significant conclusion of these studies was the demonstration that allosteric modulators affect both the rate of activation and desensitization of receptors by agonists.

In addition, I have done research on the interactions of enveloped viruses (herpes simplex) with the cell membrane during penetration and cell-to-cell passage. In this work, I did research on gene expression (viral and cellular) during infection.  Important accomplishments related to this work were the development of micro-arrays to study herpes infection and the demonstration that polysaccharides are involved in cell-to-cell passage of herpes virus.

I have combined my research work with teaching activities. I have taught Basic Virology and Molecular Biology lab in UCI, Nutritional Biochemistry in CSULB, I have collaborated in post-graduate courses in Northwestern University, the University of Illinois at Chicago and University of Buenos Aires (Argentina) and I have been an invited professor in the University of La Laguna (Spain).

In my research and teaching work I have utilized a broad variety of methodological procedures including, molecular biology, biochemistry, electrophysiology and fluorescence dynamic analysis in life cells and animals, as detailed below.

Research Skills and Expertise