• Title PhD Student – Harris Lab
  • Education BS in Biochemistry from Eastern Connecticut State University
  • Office Harris Lab/K206
  • Area of Interest Prion Disease, Cell Biology of Strain Susceptibility, Neurodegenerative Diseases

Originally from Southeastern Connecticut, I earned by BS in Biochemistry at Eastern Connecticut State University and completed an undergraduate thesis on the potential anti-inflammatory and antioxidant properties of cannabidiol as a part of the University’s Honors Program. During my undergraduate career, I interned as a summer chemistry research assistant under Dr. Bruce Branchini at Connecticut College to develop a bioluminescent system for in vivo imaging. These experiences sparked an interest in biomedical research and encouraged me to pursue a career in research. After graduation, I worked as a research assistant in the Spirochete Research Group at the UConn Health Center under Drs. Juan Salazar and Kelly Hawley on the development of a vaccine for syphilis. As a research assistant, I purified recombinant outer membrane proteins to be tested for immunogenicity to identify strong antigens. After two years as a research assistant, I knew I wanted to take the next step in my research career and pursue a PhD.

Upon acceptance to the PhD in Biomedical Sciences program at BU, I was interested in applying my biochemical knowledge and cell biology experience in translational research on neurodegenerative disorders. In the summer of 2023, I joined the lab of Dr. David Harris to study the cell biology of prion strain susceptibility and to investigate potential therapeutic mechanisms in prion disease.


Ferguson, MR, et al. (2023) “Use of Epivolve phage display to generate a monoclonal antibody with opsonic activity directed against a subdominant epitope on extracellular loop 4 of Treponema pallidum BamA (TP0326)” Frontiers in Immunology,14:1222267.

Delgado, K., et al. (2022) “Extracellular loops of the Treponema pallidum FadL orthologs TP0856 and TP0858 elicit IgG antibodies and IgG+-specific B-cells in the rabbit model of experimental syphilis.” mBio, 13 (4).

Orbe, I. (2020) “Analysis of Anti-inflammatory and Antioxidant Properties of Commercial Cannabinoids extracted from Cannabis sativa.” Proceedings of the National Conference on Undergraduate Research, 135-141.

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