Team Members

Maria Vera Ugalde Ph.D. Principal Investigator

Maria obtained her Ph.D. from the University of Navarra, Spain. She moved to New York City for her postdoctoral training with Evgeny Nudler at NYU Medical Center, where she became interested in the regulation of the stress response. Then, she moved to the laboratory of Robert Singer at Albert Einstein College of Medicine, where she developed single-cell and single-molecule fluorescence microscopy approaches to resolving the stress response.




Postdoctoral Fellow

Celia Alecki

PhD. FRQS fellow

I obtained a master’s in genetics at the University of Bordeaux Segalen, France. I moved to Montreal and obtained a Ph. D. in biochemistry at the University of Montreal, during which I studied the function of R-loops in the targeting of Polycomb group protein in Drosophila . Joining Dr. Vera Ugalde lab as a postdoc, I will continue studying the function of R-loops in mammals in the context of the stress response.


Graduate Students

Lokha Ranjani Alagar Boopathy

Ph.D. Student. FRQS fellow

Lokha obtained her Master’s from the University of Illinois. She joined the lab in 2019 and has been working on the induction and attenuation of heat shock responses.   




Stella Xu

Master’s Student

Stella studied biochemistry and computer science as an undergraduate at McGill University. In 2022, she joined the lab to study heat shock protein’s mRNA translation and trafficking in dendrites. She will combine single-molecule fluorescence microscopy tools, computational pipelines, and molecular tools in her research work. Outside the lab, she likes exploring coffee shops and taking care of her plants 🌱




Luca Lazzari

Incoming MSc Student – FALL 2023

NSERC fellow summer 2022

I am a third-year undergraduate studying Pharmacology and Therapeutics. I am interested in cellular biology and how the dysregulation of essential processes leads to disease.









Talar Ghadanian

Incoming MSc Student – FALL 2023

I’m a third-year biochemistry honours student. I am completing an independent research project on heat shock response in yeast.








Shruti Iyer

Incoming MSc Student – FALL 2023

Shruti studied biochemistry as an undergraduate at McGill. She is thrilled to be joining the Vera Ugalde lab in Fall 2023 as an M.Sc student. In her free time, she likes to sit out in the park (weather permitting) and is in search of the best coffee in Montreal.










Honours Students

Tad Wu

I am a fourth-year Honours student studying Computer Science and Biology. In my Honours project, I am investigating the dynamics of the transport of heat shock protein mRNAs when eukaryotic cells undergo stress. I enjoy playing badminton, going to the gym, and reading.








Jan Mak


I am a U3 biochemistry student and I am interested in protein aggregates in yeast. In my spare time, I enjoy playing soccer and reading. 






Kevin Munos: Biochemistry Student

Alexandra Dimitrov: Second-year Pharmacology Student

Jessamine Mattson: Biochemistry Student                                                                                  











 Lab Alumni

Graduate Students

  • Alan Xiao (2019-2021).
  • Suleima Jacob-Tomas (2019-2022).

Honour’s and BIOC 396 Undergraduate Students

  • Kyla Edelmeier (Fall 2022).
  • Zoe Wefers (Winter 2022).
  • Emma Beadle (Fall 2021).
  • Ryan Huang (Summer 2020).
  • Maanasa Koripalli (Fall 2020-Winter 2021).

Undergraduate Students

  • Idia Boncheva (Winter 2022-Summer 2022).
  • Delina Efren (Winter 2022-Summer 2022).
  • Jennifer Jiang (Summer 2020-Fall 2021).
  • Sonya Madan (Summer 2019-Fall 2020).

Visiting students from Universidad Francisco de Vitoria

  • Aitana Garia Bueno Rico (Winter 2022).
  • Irene Garcia de Andres (Winter 2020).




María Vera Ugalde

McIntyre Medical Sciences Building
3655 promenade Sir-William-Osler
Montreal, Quebec H3G 1Y6