Team Members

Maria Vera Ugalde, PhD. Principal Investigator.

María Vera Ugalde

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 Fellows

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 RanjaniLokha Ranjani Alagar Boopathy. Ph.D. Student. FRQS fellow

I am very excited to start my research on age-related neurodegenerative diseases as a first doctoral student in Dr. Maria Vera’s laboratory. I am fortunate to be a part of this laboratory and use Single-Molecule Fluorescence microscopy approaches in my research work.


Suleima Jacob-Tomas. Ph.D Student. Vanier Fellow

Suleima obtained her BSc in Animal Science from Berry College located in Rome, Georgia, USA. She traded the warmness of South Georgia and moved to Montreal where she attained her MSc in Neuroscience from McGill University. She is interested in understanding how complex neural interactions can influence an organism’s behavior in the hope of someday contributing to our ability to intervene and heal. Outside of the lab she enjoys spending time with her two furry boys, Chuy and Tuchis.




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Stella Xu. Master Student

Stella studied biochemistry and computer science as an undergraduate at McGill University. In 2022, she joined the lab to study heat shock proteins’ translation and their mRNA trafficking motors 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 🌱


Honor Students

Luca Lazzari

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






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Kyla Edelmeier

I am an undergraduate student from British Columbia studying Biochemistry at McGill. Currently, I am completing my Honours project investigating the heat shock response in yeast. When not at the lab or library, I enjoy reading, listening to podcasts and music, and spending time outdoors and with my friends. 



Tad Wu




RyanRyan Huang.

I am a first-year undergraduate student in life sciences. I am very grateful to have the opportunity to learn biochemistry lab techniques and participate in frontier biochemistry research about heat shock response. I am very excited to start my first research experience.




Former Lab Members

Mater Students

  • Alan Xiao (2019-2021).

Honor and BIOC 396 Undergraduate Students

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

Undergraduate Students

  • Luca Lazzari (Winter 2022-Summer 2022). NSERC fellow summer 2022.
  • 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