Malika Sud

Malika is an undergraduate at the University of Washington studying molecular and cellular biology. After participating in genetics research in Amsterdam during a semester abroad she knew she wanted to pursue the area further and is excited to do so as part of the Mefford lab. She hopes to continue doing research after she graduates. She loves to swim, bake treats (and eat them), watch any movie she can get her hands on, and play music in her free time.

Joseph Cook, MS

Research Scientist/Engineer

Joe received his Bachelors degree in Biology from Western Washington University in 1984 and a Masters degree in Molecular Biology from California State University, Sacramento in 1989. Prior to coming to the Mefford Lab, Joe was employed by Bristol-Myers Squibb (18 years) and Signature Genomic Laboratories (2 years). Joe's technical expertise is DNA Sequencing, Array CGH, Bioinformatics and Laboratory Automation and other molecular biology methods. In addition, Joe was a long time Laboratory Manager at BMS. Joe joined the Mefford Lab in the spring of 2010. Joe performs Array CGH experiments, DNA Sequencing and Microsatellite analysis in support of Dr. Mefford's goals of discovery of novel chromosomal aberrations involved in neurocognitive disorders. Joe has designed a Laboratory Information Management system for the Mefford lab and maintains the Mefford Lab Web Site. Outside of work, Joe enjoys outdoor activities which include backpacking, canoeing, fishing and geocaching.

Gemma Carvill, PhD

Post-Doctoral Fellow

Gemma graduated with a BSc degree in Human Genetics from University of Pretoria, South Africa in 2004. Subsequently, the call of the sea took her to the beautiful Cape on the southern tip of Africa where she completed her BSc Honours in 2005 at the University of Cape Town (UCT). Having cemented both her love for medical genetics, as well as the sea air, Gemma embarked on the PhD journey(reference: exploring the molecular etiology of X-linked intellectual disability in a cohort of South African patients. "The journey" took Gemma to several interesting places, from investigating copy number variants (CNVs) in the Brunner lab in The Netherlands, to DNA methylation profiling in Switzerland, until finally graduating with her PhD from UCT mid-2010. Having been bitten by both the travel bug and the "genomes" bug, Gemma has just kicked off her postdoc in the Mefford lab. Whilst here she will be looking to further define the molecular basis of epilepsy, perhaps dabble in epigenomics, and do much riding of her mountain bike in the wilds around Seattle.

Candace Myers, PhD

Post-Doctoral Fellow

Candace received her B.S. in Biochemistry & Molecular Biology at the University of Nevada, Reno in 2007 and her Ph.D. in Molecular & Cellular Biology at the University of Arizona in 2013. She has worked with a number of model organisms including her favorite, the African-clawed frog Xenopus laevis, to understand gene regulation during development. Candace joined the Mefford Lab in the fall of 2013 to study the ultimate (and her new favorite) model system – humans. Candace is translating her knowledge of basic science and learning many new techniques to study the genetic causes of some of the early-onset epilepsies.

Matty Zemel

Research Scientist

Matty received his Undergraduate degree in Aerospace Engineering from the University of Colorado in 2011. Matty has only recently altered his studies from engineering to medicine as he hopes to continue on to medical school in the Fall of 2014. As a research scientist in the Mefford Lab, Matty is getting his feet wet in the world of genetics by learning many genetic theories and lab techniques. When not in the lab, Matty can be found at the nearest field playing Ultimate Frisbee or on the nearest mountain skiing.

Adiba Khan


Adiba is in her final year of undergraduate studies at the University of Washington, Seattle. She is double majoring in biochemistry and journalism. At the Mefford Lab she conducts validation experiments using PCR and Sanger sequencing. She has searched for copy number variants in the genomes of Fragile X Syndrome patients who have seizures, utilizing array comparative genome hybridization. She hopes to pursue studies in neurology and global health in the future.

Amy LaCroix

Research Scientist

Amy received her BS in Biology at Northeastern University of Boston, MA in 2009. Upon graduation she worked for a small contract lab just outside of Boston before getting into academic research at Harvard Medical School where she was helping to investigate the intracellular mechanisms of Dengue virus. She then decided to explore the world outside of New England and moved here to Seattle. Amy began working for the Mefford lab in October of 2014 as our Research Scientist and Lab Manager where she assists with various projects. She hopes to eventually have a project in the lab to call her own. In her spare time, she bikes around Seattle, including her daily commute, and enjoys hiking in the beautiful Pacific Northwest.

Nicholas Lim

Research Scientist

Nick is our newest Research Scientist. Prior to joining the lab, he received his B.A. in Biology from the University of Pennsylvania in 2015. As an undergraduate, he studied the molecular basis of FTLD-ALS and blood-based biomarkers for Parkinson’s disease. Nick joined the Mefford Lab to learn the latest genomic techniques and gain a better understanding of how genome science is revolutionizing the practice of precision medicine. He plans to continue on to medical school next year. During his free time, Nick likes to run, hike, and kayak the PNW.

John Nguyen

Research Assistant

John is a junior at the University of Washington, Seattle. He is currently a Molecular and Cell Biology major but is soon applying to be a Neurobiology major. John’s interest in genetics, medicine, and neuroscience has brought him to the Mefford Lab family as a new undergraduate member to learn more about the work the team does in pediatric epilepsy. Brand new to the world of research, John is learning a lot of laboratory techniques and strategies as well as research topics from lab meetings and talks. Because of this, John is really enjoying his time spent with the Mefford team and the exposure to genetic research. John is an alumnus from the UW School of Medicine’s Summer Medical and Dental Education Program (SMDEP) in 2013. John hopes to continue on into medical school after he finishes his undergraduate studies. Outside of the lab, John loves spending time with his friends or family. He also devotes time to his student community as Vice President of the UW Minority Association of Pre-Health Students (UW MAPS).

Zoe Thuesmunn

Research Assistant

Zoe is a sophomore at the UW intending on majoring in biochemistry with a minor in diversity. She has always been fascinated by genetics and is extremely excited to join the Mefford lab as an undergraduate research assistant and to get hands-on experience with lab techniques and genetic sequencing. After graduating she plans to go on to graduate school to become a genetic counselor. In her free time she enjoys doing ballet, running, and hiking around the Pacific Northwest.

Aaron Rosen

Aaron is an undergraduate studying Biochemistry at the University of Washington and is grateful and excited for the opportunity to be pursuing undergraduate research as part of Dr. Mefford's Lab. Aaron enjoys learning about genome sciences and hopes to continue developing this understanding here and beyond. With spare time, Aaron is probably reading, practicing scientific writing, or exploring Seattle.