Personal Statement

I am an associate professor in the Board of Governors Regenerative Medicine Institute Eye Program in the Department of Biomedical Sciences at Cedars-Sinai. I am also an adjunct assistant professor at the David Geffen School of Medicine at UCLA.

I received my doctorate in molecular biology from UCLA. The research area of my doctorate was the identification and characterization of a new gene expressed in cone photoreceptors in the retina. After receiving my PhD, I engaged in postdoctoral training in molecular mechanisms of corneal diseases at Cedars-Sinai. I have been a faculty member of the Surgery Department and Department of Biomedical Sciences since 2011. Currently, I am a principal investigator and co-investigator on several National Institutes of Health grants.

I have a strong background in molecular biology, ocular diseases (both corneal and retinal), genetics and cell biology and organ culture. I am a member of several organizations including the Association for Research in Vision and Ophthalmology and the International Society of Eye Research. My research experience has been summarized in more than 40 peer-reviewed publications in respected journals such as Journal of Clinical Investigation, Journal of Biological Chemistry, American Journal of Pathology, Progress in Retinal and Eye Research and Scientific Reports. For my studies, I have collaborated with a number of research groups and assembled a comprehensive team of researchers, including corneal clinicians, corneal and stem cell specialists, plus genomics and proteomic experts with complementary experience covering all aspects of the application.