Graham McVicker

Principal Investigator

Graham received his B.Sc. in Computer Science from the University of British Columbia and subsequently worked on the Ensembl Genome Browser at the European Bioinformatics Institute. Graham then did his Ph.D. with Phil Green at the University of Washington where he studied how mutation and selection shape human genetic variation. In his postdoctoral research with Jonathan Pritchard at the University of Chicago and Stanford University Graham researched how human genetic variation affects chromatin state. Since 2016, Graham has been an Assistant Professor in the Laboratory of Genetics and the Integrative Biology Laboratory at the Salk Institute.

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Arko Sen

Postdoctoral Scholar

Arko received his B.Sc. from Bangalore University, Bangalore, India where he worked on lead poisoning with NRCLPI and Intel Environment Projects. After completing his B.Sc he completed his M.Sc in Molecular pathology and toxicology at the MRC Toxicology Unit, University of Leicester, with Dr. Don JL Jones where he identified bio-markers of Cadmium exposure with Mass Spectrometry. Following his MSc, Arko worked for a year in development of mobile applications for maternal health workers in rural areas of India and Tanzania. Arko obtained his PhD in Pharmacology at Wayne State School of Medicine, Detroit under the guidance of Dr. DM Ruden where he studied how epigenome and transcriptome changes contribute to post-concussive syndrome.‚Äč

Shanna Lavalle

Postdoctoral Scholar

Shanna Lavalle received her undergraduate degree from California State University, Long Beach, where she majored in Biology-Physiology with a minor in Chemistry. She completed her Ph.D. at the University of California, San Diego, in Dr. Pamela Mellon's lab. In her thesis she studied how the Kiss1 neuroendocrine gene is regulated by the homeodomain transcription factors SIX3 and VAX1 to influence reproduction.

Jessica Zhou

Ph.D. Student

Jessica is a PhD student in the Bioinformatics and Systems Biology program at the University of California, San Diego. She graduated with her BS in Biomedical Engineering from the University of Southern California in 2017.

Mickey Lorenzini

Ph.D. Student

Mickey is a current trainee in the Biomedical Sciences Graduate Program at UC San Diego. He earned his B.S. and M.S. in Bioengineering at UCLA, where he studied therapeutic immune cell engineering in the lab of Dr. Yvonne Chen. Prior to joining the Salk Institute and UCSD, Mickey was an Associate Scientist in preclinical cell therapy development at Kite, a Gilead Company.

Jeff Jaureguy

Ph.D. Student

Jeff is a Ph.D. student in the UCSD Bioinformatics and Systems Biology program. He completed a Bachelor's degree in Molecular and Cellular Biology from California State University, San Marcos in 2020 and an associates degree in Mathematics and Sciences from MiraCosta College in 2018.

Kimberly Spaulding

Ph.D. Student

Kiki is a Ph.D. student in the UCSD Bioinformatics and Systems Biology program. She completed a Bachelor's degree in Music at UCSD in 2010, and a Masters degree in Cell and Molecular Biology from San Francisco State University in 2017.

Aaron Ho

Scientific Programmer

Aaron completed his Bachelor's degree in Bioinformatics with a minor in Computer Science from UCSD in 2020. Since joining the McVicker laboratory he has worked on the analysis of genomics datasets and methods for estimating allele-specific expression.

Ariana Fonseca

Research Assistant

Ariana completed her Bachelor's degree in Neurobiology from UCSD in 2022. Since joining the McVicker Laboratory, she has worked to develop reporter assays to measure the effects of genetic variants on gene expression.

Karthik Guruvayurappan

Undergraduate Researcher

Karthik is UCSD undergraduate research student pursuing a double major in Data Science and General Biology. He is analyzing data from genome perturbation experiments. In his free time, he enjoys playing tennis.

Karthy Sajeev

Undergraduate Researcher

Karthy is a UCSD undergraduate research student majoring in Molecular and Cellular Biology with a minor in Data Science.

Ella Say

Undergraduate Researcher

Ella is a UCSD undergraduate research student majoring in Biology with a specialization in Bioinformatics.

Beverly Kennedy

Lab Administrative Manager


Lab Affiliates

Mike Cuoco

Ph.D. Student (Primary Advisor: Rusty Gage)

Mike worked for several years in the Regev lab at the Broad institute before joining the BISB program at UCSD. His primary Ph.D mentor is Rusty Gage, and he is co-advised by Graham McVicker and Eran Mukamel.


Lab Alumni

Postdoctoral scholars

Hsiuyi Chen
Postdoctoral Scholar
2016-2022
Current and Next Position: Research Scientist, A*STAR Infectious Diseases Labs, Singapore


Graduate Students

Patrick Fiaux
UCSD Ph.D. Student in Bioinformatics and Systems Biology
9/2016-2/2021
Current and Next Position: Bioinformatics Scientist, PetDx

Jing Gu
UCSD M.Sc. Student in Chemistry and Biochemistry
1/2016-9/2017
Next Position: Bioinformatics Programmer in Joe Gleeson Lab, UCSD Current Position: Ph.D. Student at University of Chicago (He Lab)


Undergraduate Students

Jasmine Castellanos
STARS Undergraduate Researcher from CS Fullerton
6/2021-8/2021

Arya Massarat
Undergraduate student from Harvey Mudd.
5/2018-9/2020
Current and Next Position: PhD Student in Bioinformatics and Systems Biology Program at UCSD (Gymrek Lab)

Aaron Chen
UCSD Undergraduate Researcher
8/2018-6/2020
Research Associate
7/2020-6/2021
Current and Next Position: Medical Student at Renaissance School of Medicine, Stony Brook University

Ishika Luthra
Undergraduate Co-op student from SFU
9/2016-12/2016
Next Position: Co-op student in Marco Marra Lab at Canada's Michael Smith Genome Sciences Center
Current Position: Ph.D. Student in de Boer and Mostafavi Labs at University of British Columbia

Etchi Ako
STARS Undergraduate Researcher from UC Riverside
6/2021/8/2021


High School Students

Lillian Petersen
High school student intern from Los Alamos High School
6/2019-5/2020
Current and Next Position: Undergraduate Student, Harvard

Halimo Farah
High School Summer Student, Heithoff-Brody Scholars Program
7/2018-8/2018
Current and Next Position: Undergraduate Student, UCSD


Scientific Staff

Sherry Huang
Jr. Scientific Programmer
5/2021-8/2021
Current and Next Position: Masters Student in Computer Science at UCLA

Sélène Tyndale
Lab Coordinator
3/2016-2/2020
Next Position: Associate Scientist I, Illumina
Current Position: Fate Therapeutics


Admin Staff

Annabell Garcia
Lab Administrative Manager (shared with Azim, Asahina, Engle, Lyumkis Labs)
2018-2021

Rachel Burgess Lab Administrative Manager (shared with Busch, Law, Michael, Labs)
9/2021-5/2022

Beth Coyne
Lab Administrative Manager (shared with Verma Lab, Gage Lab)
1/2016-12/2018
Current and Next Position: Full-time Lab Administrative Manager for Gage Lab.


Lab affiliates

Fred Monroe
5/2021-1/2023
Machine Learning Advisor

Kayla Chase
Postdoctoral Scholar (in Palmer Lab at UCSD)
2/2016-8/2017
Next Position: Research Assistant Professor, University of Illinois at Chicago
Current Position: Medical Science Liason, Collegium Pharmaceutical, Inc.,


Rotation Students

Kohan Lee (BISB | Winter 2023), Avery Pong (BISB | Fall 2022), Gege Qian (BISB | Winter 2022), Kimberly Spaulding (BISB | Winter 2022), Jeff Jaureguy (BISB | Fall 2020), Mickey Lorenzini (BMS | Summer 2020), Chris Balak (MS | Spring 2020), Joe Solvason (BISB | Winter 2019), Jennifer Havens (BISB | Fall 2018), Adam Jussila (BISB | Fall 2018), James Sorrentino (BISB | Fall 2017), Jessica Zhou (BISB | Summer 2017), Patrick Fiaux (BISB | Spring 2016)