Posdoctoral Association Committee Members 2018

Chitra ThakurChitra Thakur, PDA Chair
Department of Pharmaceutical Sciences
Eugene Applebaum College of Pharmacy and Health Sciences

Chitra Thakur is a research associate in the Department of Pharmaceutical Sciences in the Eugene Applebaum College of Pharmacy and Health Sciences at Wayne State University. She was awarded the prestigious Graduate School of Life Sciences (GSLS) fellowship from the Excellence Initiative of the German Federal and State Governments to conduct her doctoral training in Germany. She earned her Ph.D. in molecular oncology from the Julius Maximilian University of Würzburg and conducted her doctoral studies at the Max Planck Institute of Biochemistry, Martinsried Munich, Germany. Her primary research was focused on the mechanism and the signaling pathways that are deregulated in the development of lung cancer. In her postdoctoral research, under the mentorship of Prof. Dr. Fei Chen, she is investigating the role of mineral dust induced gene, mdig in the context of environmental mediated carcinogenesis of human breast cancers.

Stefanie BaierStefanie Baier, PDA Vice Chair
Academic Affairs, Student Success
Office of the Provost

Stefanie Baier is a postdoctoral fellow with Academic Affairs, Division Student Success in the Office of the Provost. She earned her Ph.D. in Educational Psychology from Theoretical and Behavioral Foundation at Wayne State University. Her research interests include student development and learning, specifically psycho-social factors influencing student academic success and retention. She is currently studying how self-efficacy, mentorship and sense of belonging impact the success of diverse and first-generation freshman college students. She is also involved with the evaluation of student success initiatives under the supervision of Dr. Monica Brockmeyer and the mentorship of Prof. Shlomo Sawilowsky.

Md Hafiz Uddin PDAMd Hafiz Uddin, PDA Secretary
Department of Oncology
School of Medicine

Md Hafiz Uddin is a postdoctoral fellow in the Department of Oncology, College of Medicine at Wayne State University. He was awarded the prestigious Graduate Scholarship for Excellent Foreign Student (GSFS) fellowship for his Ph.D. program at Seoul National University, Seoul, South Korea. During his Ph.D. he worked on the mechanism of oncogenesis in carcinogen/parasite induced hamster cholangiocarcinoma (bile duct cancer) model. In his postdoctoral research, he focused on the mechanism of chemoresistance in ovarian and breast cancer through the modulation of stem cell related gene ALDH1A1, cell division associated gene NEK2, metabolism and MAPK pathway.

Deepthi YedlapudiDeepthi Yedlapudi, PDA Treasurer
Department of Pharmaceutical Sciences
Eugene Applebaum College of Pharmacy and Health Sciences

Deepthi Yedlapudi is a postdoctoral fellow in the Department of Pharmaceutical Sciences in the Eugene Applebaum College of Pharmacy and Health Sciences at Wayne State University. She conducted her graduate work in Dr. Kalivendi's lab at CSIR-Indian Institute of Chemical Technology, where she studied the role of alternatively spliced isoforms of α-synuclein in human neurodegeneration. Her current research focuses on understanding the potential mechanisms through which Metformin-Methylglyoxal metabolite might reduce diabetic complications at Dr. Monks' lab.

Amy PennarAmy Pennar, PDA Chair of Professional Development
Family Medicine and Public Health Sciences
School of Medicine

Amy Pennar is a Researchers of Biobehavioral Health in Urban Settings Today (RoBUST) Postdoctoral Fellow in Family Medicine and Public Health Sciences in the School of Medicine at Wayne State University. She earned her Ph.D. in Family and Human Development from the T. Denny Sanford School of Social and Family Dynamics at Arizona State University. Her primary research interests focus on the mechanisms through which health and culture affect individual development and family dynamics as they evolve over time and in diverse contexts. Her postdoctoral research, under the direction of Dr. Sylvie Naar-King and Dr. Mark Luborsky, centers on the effect of HIV-infection on adolescent biopsychological functioning, medication adherence, and long-term health outcomes.

Marufa RummanMarufa Rumman, PDA Chair of Publications, Media network
Department of Oncology, Karmanos Cancer Institute
School of Medicine

Marufa Rumman is a postdoctoral fellow in the Department of Oncology, Karmanos Cancer Institute, School of Medicine at Wayne State University. She was awarded the prestigious Korean Government Scholarship to pursue her doctoral study in the drug development program in the College of Medicine at Inha University, South Korea. Her primary research focused on understanding molecular and cellular regulations of cancer progression, development and dissemination. She is working on unfolded protein response (UPR) in ovarian cancer under the supervision of Dr. Ira Winer, MD, Ph.D. to find effective therapies at the translational level.

Amina WoffordAmina Wofford, PDA Liason
Biochemistry, Immunology, and Microbiology
School of Medicine

Amina Wofford received her Ph.D. from Tuskegee University, Tuskegee, Alabama, in the integrative biosciences program. Her research interests involve evaluating novel therapeutic strategies for viral infection, specifically Herpesviruses. As a postdoctoral fellow at Wayne State, Dr. Wofford is continuing her research aimed at investigating and identifying novel strategies to combat viral infections and understanding the complex relationships that contribute to viral pathogenesis. As a Postdoctoral to Faculty Transition (PFT) Fellow, she aspires to ultimately transition to an independent researcher position in which she can continue her research while contributing significantly to the growth and development of Wayne State students interested in science and/or research careers.

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