Team

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Dr. Agnieszka Apple | Principal Investigator

Agnieszka (Aga) was appointed Assistant Professor in the Department of Immunology and Microbiology in 2016. Her research unravels complex links between viruses, bacteria and the host immune environment. As part of her scientific accomplishments, she received the prestigious Parker B. Francis Fellowship for Pulmonary Research that supports her research. Aga is also actively involved in science mentoring and outreach, through partnership with the Blackfeet Community College in Browning, MT.

Email: agnieszka.rynda@montana.edu


Kelly Shepardson, Ph.D. | Postdoctoral Researcher

Kelly is a research scientist that joined the Apple laboratory in July of 2014. Her career in science began with a B.A. in Biochemistry and Molecular Biology in 2009 from Wells College in NY. She then continued on to graduate school at Dartmouth College, NH for a Ph.D. in Microbiology and Immunology where she worked on determining the role of hypoxia in the pathogenesis of a human fungal pathogen. During her postdoc, working under Dr. Apple, she worked on determining the early immune events during viral infection that shape the ability of the host to respond to subsequent pathogen encounters. Now, developing her independent research program, she aims to understand how anti-viral immune responses and damage during viral infection allow for subsequent fungal infections to occur (funded by a Parker B. Francis Fellowship). With her award of a NIH/NIAID K22 career transition grant, she is currently applying to tenure-track assistant professor positions to start her own laboratory.

Email: kelly.shepardson@montana.edu

LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/in/kelly-shepardson


Monica_Hall1.JPG (Photo by Glenn Asakawa/University of Colorado)

Monica Hall, Ph.D. | Research Associate

Monica joined the Apple Lab March of 2020. She has a Ph.D. in Genetics and Molecular Biology from Emory University and B.S. in Chemistry from the University of Louisville. At the University of Colorado, her postdoctoral work uncovered defects in muscle stem cell proliferation in aged mice by combining cellular barcoding with high-throughput sequencing to quantify cell divisions in vivo during muscle repair. Monica has many research interests, but her overarching philosophy is to “follow the science.” Outside the lab, she enjoys skiing and hanging out with her 60 lb Asian Water Monitor, the second largest lizard by weight after the Komodo Dragon.

Email: monica.hall@montana.edu

LinkedIn: www.linkedin.com/in/monicanicolehall


EvelynBenson

Evelyn Benson, B.A. | Research Associate

Evelyn is a Research Associate who joined the Apple Lab in November of 2018.  She has an AAS in Animal Health Technology from Colorado Mountain College and a B.A. in Environmental Biology from University of Colorado Boulder.  She has worked in various environments including as a certified Veterinary Technician, certified Laboratory Animal Technician, Research Assistant for biotech companies, and Research Associate for pharmaceutical companies.  Her most recent work has been at the bench performing various assays including ELISA’s, qRT-PCR and Bacterial Killing Assays.

Currently, she is working with the Apple Lab team on optimizing and validating several types of immune assays for bat samples.

Email: evelyn.benson1@montana.edu


Abby Luu

Abby Luu, B.S. | Graduate Student

Abby is a graduate student who joined the Apple Laboratory in August of 2019. She received her B.S. in Biomedical Sciences from Colorado State University in 2015. Prior to joining the Apple Lab, she worked in the AgriGenomics industry performing SNP analysis. She aims to understand the role that cellular metabolism plays in viral infection and subsequent regulation of Type I Interferons.

Email: abby.luu@student.montana.edu


Erika Anderson | Undergraduate Student

Erika is an undergraduate student working with Evelyn and is assisting with research involving the generation of immune assays for bat samples.


Emma Ankringa | Undergraduate Student

Emma is an undergraduate student working with Abby and Monica.
 

Madison Hebner, B.S. | Graduate Student

Madison is working with graduate students Dan Crowley and Caylee Falvo of the Plowright Laboratory. She is studying the innate immunity of Jamaican fruit bats.


Lab Alumni

Julia Roemer | Undergraduate Student

Clyde Schulein | Undergraduate Student

Gabby Rizzo | Undergraduate Student

Sophia Springfield | Undergraduate Student

Ema Robinson | Graduate Student

Alexis Hatton | Graduate Student

Emiliano Hernandez | Undergraduate Student

Julia Wellham | Undergraduate Student

Logan Johns | Research Associate

Kyle Larson | Research Associate

Libby Fones | Graduate Rotation Student

Rebecca Orlando| Graduate Rotation Student (Spring 2018)

Gary Dunn | Graduate Rotation Student (Spring 2019)

Lillie Watson | Undergraduate Student

Hanbyul (Hannah) Cho | Undergraduate INBRE Scholar

Coy Harwood | Undergraduate INBRE Scholar

Kayla Stanek | Undergraduate Student

Lilianna Bento | Undergraduate Student

Kendra Bertrand | Undergraduate Student