Current Group Members

MIR Research Group
Aryan Galani ‘21

Aryan is a Biochemistry and Molecular Biology major who has worked in Dr. Stoddard’s lab since summer 2018.  Aryan’s work focuses on developing new approaches to autoimmune disorders. Aryan's work focuses on development of therapeutic interventions for patients who express antibodies to the thrombospondin type-1 containing domain 7A protein. Aryan's work involves both computational techniques such as protein-protein docking, in silico protein engineering and experimental techniques such an protein expression and purification.  Aryan plans to attend medical school after Rhodes College.

Brandon James ‘21

Brandon is a Chemistry major who has worked in Dr. Stoddard’s lab since spring 2019. Brandon’s work focuses on understanding the inhibitor selectivity between histone deacetylase enzymes. Brandon has also worked on the design, synthesis and evaluation of novel therapeutics for the cancer disorder glioma which is sensitive to histone deacteylase 4 (HDAC4) expression level. Brandon's work involves both computational techniques such as molecular docking and in silico drug design in addition to synthesis of cyclopropane hydroxamate acid derivatives developed in this lab to target HDAC4 as a potential treatment for glioma.  Brandon plans to attend dental school after Rhodes College.

Kaylah Whalum ‘21

Kaylah is a Chemistry major who has worked in Dr. Stoddard’s lab since spring 2019.  Kaylah’s work focuses on developing novel therapeutic proteins for primary membranous nephropathy.  Kaylah's focuses on design on therapeutics for patients who express antibodies against the thrombospondin type-1 containing domain 7A. Her work involves both computational in silico protein engineering, protein-protein docking, and experimental biochemical techniques to express, purify, and characterize the engineered proteins. After Rhodes Kaylah plans to go to dental school. 

Kathryn Edwards '21

Kathryn is a chemistry major who joined Dr. Stoddard's MIR research Lab summer 2019.  Kathryn's work focuses on synthesis and biological investigation of novel HDAC4 inhibitors.  Her project is a collaborative project between Dr. Stoddard's lab and Dr. Bea's lab.  Kathryn's work involves the synthesis of cyclopropane hydroxamate acid derivatives being developed in this lab for glioma therapeutics.  After graduation from Rhodes Kathryn plans to pursue a degree in medicine. 

Keerthana Kasetty '21

Keerthana is a Chemistry major who joined Dr. Stoddard's Lab in Fall 2019. Keerthana's work focuses on developing novel therapeutics for idiopathic membranous nephropathy. She focuses on therapeutics designed for patients who have antibodies targeting the thrombospondin type-1 containing domain 7A protein. Keerthana's work utilizes both computational and experimental techniques such as protein-protein docking, in silico design, protein expression and purification. After Rhodes Keerthana plans to go to medical school.

Kennedi Fitts '21

Kennedi joined Dr. Stoddard's research lab fall 2019.  Kennedi is a Chemistry major and her research focuses on development of selective inhibitors for histone deacetylases (HDAC), with an emphasis on HDAC11.  After Rhodes Kennedi plans to attend medical school.  Kennedi's work involves molecular docking simulations, in silico design of novel drug compounds, and optimization of molecular features leading to enhanced binding to protein receptors of interest. Kennedi also recently published a journal article on development of optimization guidelines for coronavirus antivirals in the journal Viruses in 2020.

Nicole Luthcke '22

Nicole is a neuroscience major who joined Dr. Stoddard's Lab in Spring 2019. Nicole's work focuses on biological evaluation of engineered proteins as a potential therapeutic route for autoimmune disease therapy. Currently her work focuses focuses on therapeutics designed for patients who have antibodies targeting the phospholipase A2 protein receptor.  After Rhodes Nicole plans to go to medical school.

Ayanna Kemp '22

Ayanna, joined the MIR lab in Summer 2020 and is neuroscience major. Her project focuses on using a number of in silico techniques to define the essential features needed to develop inhibitors that selectively targeting histone deacetylase 4 (HDAC4). Ayanna uses quantitative structure activity relationships, molecular docking, and other bioinformatics tools to study HDAC4. After Rhodes Ayanna plans to attend medical school.

Arrington Moses '22

Arrington is a neuroscience major who joined the MIR lab fall 2020. His who work focuses on synthesis and evaluation of novel therapeutics for the for Huntington's disorder. Arrington is currently synthesizing a series of cyclopropane hydroxamate acid derivatives developed in this lab to target HDAC4 as a potential target for Huntington's and for glioma. Arrington is a member of the Rhodes swim team and plans to attend medical school after Rhodes College.

Adrian Russ '22

Adrian Russ is a Chemistry major, who joined the MIR lab Fall 2020. He is a member of the Rhodes football team. His work focuses on development of broad-spectrum inhibitors for coronaviruses. He uses computational chemistry to identify molecular interactions that increase the binding affinity of drug compounds to coronaviruses main protease. After Rhodes Adrian plans to continue his education earning a graduate degree in Pharmacology then pursue a career at the Center for Disease Control. 

Guadalupe Calderon '23

Guadalupe who joined the MIR lab in Summer 2020 plans to major in biochemistry and molecular biology and minor in music. She was born and raised in Houston, TX, is a latina, and first generation student. Guadalupe's work focuses on protein engineering and biological evaluation of synthetic binding proteins as potential therapeutic route for autoimmune disease therapy. Currently her work focuses focuses on therapeutics designed for patients who have antibodies targeting the phospholipase A2 protein receptor. 

Benjamin Oelkers '23

Ben Oelkers plans joined the MIR lab in Summer 2020. Ben's work focuses on the design of therapeutic agents for coronavirus. The work Ben has performed so far led to the design of novel antivirals for COVID-19, which the lab is currently pursuing as a therapeutic options coronavirus. Ben also engineers proteins as another therapeutic route to treatment for coronaviruses. Ben plans to attend medical school after Rhodes, and wants to have a career combining medicine and research.

Felissa "Emma" Wallace

Emma Wallace is a senior at Walnut Hills High School. Emma joined the MIR lab summer 2019. Emma is currently working on the design of novel antivirals for coronaviruses and engineering proteins to target as another viable therapeutic route for COVID-19. Currently Emma's work has lead to one publication where she designed novel antiviral compounds for COVID-19 that target the coronavirus main protease.

Summer 2019 Emma worked on a project focusing on evaluating novel compounds for histone deacetylase 2 (HDAC2). Through her work she helped to define the molecular interactions that optimized binding to the HDAC2 protein, which is a target for colorectal cancer. After high school Emma plans to attend college to pursue a career as a scientist.