NYC lab photo-current


Itai Yanai
Professor, Biochemistry and Molecular Pharmacology
Institute for Systems Genetics
New York University, School of Medicine

2016-Present: Professor, New York University Grossman School of Medicine
2016-2021: Director of the Institute for Computational Medicine, New York University Grossman School of Medicine
2014-2015: Sabbatical, Radcliffe Institute for Advanced Study, Harvard University
2008-2016: Assistant Professor and Associate Professor, Technion Israel Institute of Technology
2004-2008: Postdoctoral fellow, Molecular and Cellular Biology Department, Harvard University
2002-2004: Koshland Scholar, Molecular Genetics Department, Weizmann Institute of Science
1998-2002: PhD in Bioinformatics, Boston University
1997-1998: Post-bac in the Institute Pasteur, Paris
1993-1997: Bachelor of Sciences (Computer Engineering) and Arts (Philosophy of Science), Boston University

guishengGuisheng Zhao, Ph.D., Lab Manager
I am the lab manager in the Yanai lab. I take on lab administrative duties and conduct research projects. I received my MD degree from Beijing Medical University in China, and earned my PhD degree in Pathobiology and Molecular Medicine from University of Cincinnati. 

APAndrew Pountain, Postdoctoral Fellow
I joined the Yanai lab in the summer of 2020 and I am a postdoctoral fellow applying single cell transcriptomics approaches to study infectious processes. I have a background in microbiology, studying parasite drug resistance for my PhD at the University of Glasgow, followed by postdoctoral work in fungal pathogenesis at the University of Texas Health Science Center at Houston. I received my undergraduate degree in Molecular and Cellular Biochemistry from the University of Oxford.

Anjali Rao, Postdoctoral Fellow
I am a post doctoral fellow in the Yanai lab using single cell genomics to study the role of transcriptionally heterogeneous cancer states driving tumor progression. During my PhD at Northwestern University, I studied the epigenetic regulation of maintenance of pluripotency of neural crest stem cells in the lab of  Dr. Carole LaBonne. I got my undergraduate degree in Biotechnology from SASTRA University in India.

gustavoGustavo S. França, Postdoctoral Fellow
I joined the Yanai lab in the summer of 2016. I did my undergraduate studies in Biology and obtained M.Sc and PhD degrees in Molecular Biology from the University of Sao Paulo – Brazil. I have been using bioinformatics approaches to understand the transcriptome complexity through evolutionary perspectives.

Maayan Pour, Postdoctoral Fellow

I joined the Yanai lab as a postdoctoral fellow, in the fall of 2019. I’m interested in studying cell state transitions in development and disease, at the single-cell level. I did my Ph.D. at Tel Aviv University, focusing on cell fate decisions during stem cell differentiation.
I received my BSc in Biotechnology engineering from Ben-Gurion University.

Bo Xia, PhD studentPicture1.jpg

I’m fascinated by the genetic codes underlying human development, diseases and evolution. I did my undergraduate study in biological science in China Agricultural University. Before joining the graduate program at NYU School of Medicine in 2015, I worked with Dr. Chengqi Yi in Peking University and developed chemical tools for genome-wide analysis of DNA epigenetic modifications. At NYU, I’m fortunate to be co-mentored by Drs. Itai Yanai and Jef Boeke, allowing me to think broadly about our genome and its evolution. I’m combining both experimental approaches and computational tools to understand the genome evolution by point mutations and transposable elements. Ultimately, I hope to understand how integrated genetic changes modulate human development, behavior and evolution.

feliciaFelicia Kuperwaser, PhD student
I’m a graduate student in the Yanai lab interested in temporal dynamics of the immune response in inflammatory disease and infection. I graduated from Brandeis University with a BSc in neuroscience in 2013. Before starting grad school, I worked for three years in Dr. Andrew Lichtman’s lab at Brigham and Women’s Hospital investigating T lymphocyte responses in cardiovascular disease.

Version 2Dalia Barkley, MD/PhD Student
I am an PhD student in the Yanai lab and am interested in studying cancer evolution at the single-cell level. Before joining the MD/PhD program at NYU, I obtained my undergraduate degree in Cellular and Molecular Biology from the Ecole Normale Superieure in Paris and my master’s in Computational Biology from the University of Cambridge.

ayushiAyushi Patel, PhD Student
Before joining the graduate program at NYU School of Medicine in 2020, I obtained my undergraduate degree at University of Rochester and a Master’s in Biomedical Science from Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai. During my master’s program I worked in Dr. Hideo Watanabe’s lab where I studied lineage plasticity in lung cancer. Now, as a graduate student in the Yanai and Wong lab interested in studying epigenetic regulation of lung cancer cell states.

debbieDeborah Liberman, PhD Student
I joined the Yanai lab in the spring of 2021, and I am interested in investigating shifts in cancer cell states during tumorigenesis and in response to therapy. I received my BS in Biological Sciences and Bioethics from DePaul University. Prior to starting the PhD program at NYU, I spent three years studying neuroinflammatory responses to an endocrine disrupting compound at my undergraduate institution.

peienPeien Jiang, PhD Student

I joined the Yanai lab as a PhD student in 2021 and I’m interested in host-pathogen interaction and bacteria heterogeneity. Before joining the Biology PhD Program in NYU, I got my bachelor degree in Biological Science (Poling Class) from Nankai University in 2020. During my summer research in Yale University, I used CRISPR/dCas9 imaging system to study X chromosome interaction in Dr. Inhyun Park’s lab. And I investigated endoplasmic reticulum membrane network dynamics for my undergraduate thesis project in Dr. Junjie Hu’s lab at Institute of Biophysics, Chinese Academy of Science.

jyingieJingye Wang, Phd Student

I am a PhD student in Yanai Lab broadly interested in statistical modeling and cancer systems biology. I got a bachelor’s degree in Integrated Science in 2021 at Peking University, where I constructed biophysical models of living systems under the mentorship of Dr. Chao Tang and Dr. Yuhai Tu. In the fall semester of 2019 I was also fortunate to work on mechanisms of bacterial persistence in Dr.Philippe Cluzel’s lab at Harvard University.

Linda_Photo_scaleLinda Procell, Phd Student

I joined the Yanai lab as a PhD student in the fall of 2022, where I’m interested in studying the spatial aspects of tumor evolution at a single-cell resolution. Before joining the graduate program at NYU, I received my BS and MSE from John Hopkins in Chemical and Biomolecular Engineering while working in the Gerecht lab on projects related to tumor vasculogenesis and erythrocytosis.


Dr. Tamar Hashimshony, Lab Manager
Tamar served as our amazing lab manager at the Technion. She graduated from the Technion’s Biology Faculty in 1996 and later received her MSc and PhD degrees from the Hebrew University’s medical school under the guidance of Prof. Howard Cedar. Her post-doctoral work as a HFSP fellow was done in the lab of Prof. Harinder Singh at the University of Chicago.

PhD students: 

Dr. Reuben Moncada
Dr. Gal Avital
Dr. Maayan Baron
Dr. Vladislav Grishkevich
Dr. Michal LevinDr. Harel Zalts

Masters students:

Shay Ben-Elazar
Dr. Florian Wagner
Avital Polsky
Dr. Leon Anavy
Sally Khair
Natalya Mostov
Martin Feder
Naftalie Senderovich

Undergraduate students:

Yun Yan
Rachelly Normand
Katya Kovalev
Dafna Yaron Gurevich
David Silver
Ronny Beer

Postdocs and Research Associates:

Dr. Gal Avital (both PhD student and Postdoc in the lab)
Dr. Leon Anavy (both MSc student and Postdoc in the lab)
Dr. Florian Wagner (both MSc student and Postdoc in the lab)
Dr. Marta Chiodin, Lab Manager
Dr. Alison G. Cole
Dr. Noa Sher
Dr. Itai Sharon
Dr. Eitan Winter
Dr. Dov Hershkovitz

The Yanai lab began in Israel in 2008 at the Department of Biology in the Technion – Israel Institute of Technology. The lab moved to NYU in 2016. Below are images of members of the Yanai Lab at the Technion.

Technion lab.png
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