Research

I apply quantitative methods to make predictions about the regulation of complex biological processes, including stem cell differentiation and tissue regeneration. My research is focused on identifying and interpreting lineage trajectories that arise from the stem cells of the olfactory epithelium.

Located at the basal side of the epithelium, these stem cells are normally quiescent, occasionally giving rise to cycling progenitors that are responsible for cell replacement under homeostatic conditions (like regular home maintenance). However, following severe injury, the stem cells become activated and regenerate the epithelium in as little as 14 days in mice, like rebuilding a house after a tornado.

I’m interested in how olfactory stem cells become activated and the choices they make as they choose between neuronal and non-neuronal (support cell) fates, or remaining stem cells for the next round of regeneration. Working with wet lab biologists and statisticians, I analyze these processes using single-cell RNA-sequencing.


  1. Sniffing out stem cell fates in the nose.

  2. The promise of stem cells: Regeneration in the adult nervous system.