The Toronto RNA Club is primarily organized by a group trainees (graduate students and post-docs) who are highly motivated in establishing a more tight-knit RNA community. If you are interested in participating or would like to share your ideas, feel free to email us with your suggestions.
Nevraj is a PhD student in Dr. Alex Palazzo’s lab in the Department of Biochemistry at the University of Toronto. His graduate research focuses on elucidating the role of the metabolic enzyme Pyruvate Kinase as a non-canonical RNA-binding protein. Nevraj is of the opinion that RNA is the most remarkable of biological macromolecules – it is the link between the modern and the ancient, a humble molecule which has defined the earliest forms of life. Naturally, he enjoys his role as an organizer in the Toronto RNA Club – and is especially keen on meeting members of the RNA community and getting to know their research.
Ashley is a PhD student in Dr. Lori Frappier’s lab at the University of Toronto. She is investigating the role of Epstein-Barr virus proteins and their role in miRNA/mRNA regulation. She hopes to be able to engage with other people from the RNA field and highlight the importance in RNA in not just living things but also non-living things (like viruses!). She hopes that by joining the Toronto RNA Club she can help bring together the great ideas, people, and energy from the RNA field.
Giovanni is a PhD student in the Greenblatt Lab at the University of Toronto, based in the Donnelly Centre for Cellular and Biomolecular Research. He is investigating the role of C2H2-zinc finger proteins in post-transcriptional nucleotide modification of mRNA (the ‘epitranscriptome’) and their effects on gene expression through interactions with m6A-related proteins. As an organizer, Giovanni hopes to foster an environment for RNA biologists in Toronto and beyond to meet, interact and share their exciting research, ideas, wisdom, insight, to build friendships, and inspire collaborations.
Marjan Moallem is a PhD student in Dr. Emanuel Rosonina’s lab at York University. Her graduate research is focused on exploring the effect of global levels of sumoylation, a post-translation modification, on gene transcription. These include the transcription of genes that are important for translation. Marjan hopes to expand the RNA community network across the GTA and connect with trainees and researchers who are excited about the intriguing world of RNA.
Sean is a M.Sc student co-supervised by Dr. Alex Palazzo and Dr. Kate Lee. His primary research interests lie in RNA biology and cellular liquid-liquid phase separation. More specifically, Sean is investigating the role of RNA in the stress granule assembly. As an organizer, Sean is excited to help build and support the community of RNA biologists in Toronto.
Nujhat Ahmed is a PhD student in Dr. Jack Greenblatt’s lab at the University of Toronto. Her research is focused on identifying and characterizing novel regulators of alternative cleavage and polyadenylation (APA) through the use of genome-wide CRISPR screens. Additionally, she utilizes biochemical approaches to investigate the role of C2H2-zinc finger proteins in post-transcriptional regulation, primarily focusing on APA. As an organizer of the Toronto RNA Club, she aspires to bring together experts in the RNA field and facilitate exchange of exciting ideas among RNA enthusiasts.
Kyra is a Ph.D. student in the Bayfield lab at York University. She is investigating the function of the RNA-binding protein La in tRNA precursor processing and mRNA translation during cellular stress. As an organizing member of the RNA club, she wants to help with creating an environment for junior and senior RNA scientists in sharing their work and meeting other interesting researchers in the field.
We would also like to thank our amazing faculty advisors for their mentorship and guidance.
- Eesha Sharma
- Cigdem Sahin
- Matthew Hildebrandt
- Eliza Lee