Current Lab Members



Leor Weinberger, PhD

William and Ute Bowes Distinguished Professor Director, Gladstone Center for Cell Circuitry Professor of Pharmaceutical Chemistry, Biochemistry and Biophysics University of California, San Francisco

Leor's background is in physics and virology and he has had a long-standing interest in viral dynamics and decision circuits. He is a Professor of Pharmaceutical Chemistry, Biochemistry and Biophysics at UCSF,  Director of the Gladstone Center for Cell Circuity, and a QB3 faculty member. He is a member of UCSF's Biophysics (iPQB), Tetrad, and Biomedical Sciences (BMS) Graduate Programs, and the UC Berkeley/UCSF Bioengineering Graduate Program. He enjoys mountaineering and American craft whiskey.

Email: leor dot weinberger at gladstone dot ucsf dot edu

UCSF Profile: Click here


Sonali Chaturvedi, PhD

Post-Doctoral Scholar

Sonali got her PhD as a member of Professor A.L.N. Rao’s Lab in UC Riverside. Before that she was a graduate student at Sardar Patel University, and an RA at the University of Hyderabad in India. She is now interested in employing proteomics and structural biology to study the negative feedback regulation in Cytomegalovirus. Outside work, she enjoys hiking, sketching and adventure sports.

Email: sonali dot chaturvedi at gladstone dot ucsf dot edu

Elizabeth Tanner, PhD

Post-Doctoral Scholar

Elizabeth earned her PhD in Genetics from Stanford University. She is interested in developing therapeutic strategies for rapidly evolving pathogens. Elizabeth spends most of her free time as a Bay Area cliche, practicing yoga and determining who makes the best loaf of sourdough (Acme. It's always Acme).

Email: elizabeth dot tanner at gladstone dot ucsf dot edu

Noam Vardi, PhD

Post-Doctoral Scholar

Noam received his PhD from the department of molecular genetics in the Weizmann Institute of Science, where he studied regulation of nutrient homeostasis in the lab of Naama Barkai. Before that he received his BSc in Physics and Biology from Tel-Aviv University. He is interested in the relation between viral circuitry, fitness and infection dynamics. Outside the lab he enjoys spending time with his family, hiking, and going to the beach. 

Email: noam dot vardi at gladstone dot ucsf dot edu       

Maike Hansen, PhD

Post-Doctoral Scholar

Maike received her PhD from the department of Physical Organic Chemistry, Radboud University Nijmegen (the Netherlands). Before this, she obtained her Master’s degree in Chemical Biology from the University of Warwick. She is now interested in the mechanism of noise in HIV gene expression. In her free time Maike enjoys hiking, jogging, and painting.

Email: maike dot hansen at gladstone dot ucsf dot edu


Marie Wolf, PhD

Staff Scientist

Marie received her PhD in Molecular and Cellular Biology from the Universite de Strasbourg (France) where she worked on viral translation mechanisms. During her postdoc at Stanford she developed an interest in virus trafficking and microscopy. As an Associate Specialist at UCSF she studied inflammation signaling, ECM remodeling and molecular changes following ocular injuries and infections. Having worked with various virus models, she is interested in developing new ways of disrupting viral infections. In her free time she enjoys knitting/hoarding yarn and urban hiking

Email: marie dot wolf at gladstone dot ucsf dot edu

Ravi Desai

Graduate Student Tetrad - MD/PhD Program

Ravi is an MD/PhD student at UCSF. He graduated from Johns Hopkins University with a BA in Biophysics. His research interests are in infectious diseases. His current work explores noise in gene expression and its role in cell-fate decisions. Outside of the lab, he enjoys cycling and hiking.

Email: ravi dot desai at gladstone dot ucsf dot edu


Sushil Sobti

Graduate Student Tetrad PhD Program

Sushil first entered the biology world through a lab that designed small molecule sensors for catecholamines. After graduating from the University of Missouri with a BS in Chemistry, He joined a lab specializing in piRNA precursor processing in Drosophila as part of a postbaccalaureate program at the NIH. Outside of lab, Sushil likes hiking, stand-up comedy, and playing tennis.

Email: sushil dot sobti at gladstone dot ucsf dot edu

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Erin Isaza

Graduate Student UCSF - MD/PhD Biophysics

Erin is an MD/PhD student at UCSF. She completed her undergraduate degree at Caltech, where she studied bioengineering and English. While at Caltech, she worked in Pamela Bjorkman’s laboratory on engineering broadly neutralizing antibodies against HIV. In the Weinberger lab, Erin is interested in viral latency circuitry. Outside of lab, she can usually be found weightlifting, trying out a new brewery, or loitering in a bookstore.

Email: erin dot isaza at gladstone dot ucsf dot edu

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Joshua Glazier

Research Associate II

Josh joined the lab in 2017 after receiving his BS in Biomedical Engineering from the University of Virginia. Josh is currently working on new transmissible antivirals for HIV, ZIKV, and Influenza through the development of therapeutic interfering particles. Outside of the lab, Josh enjoys playing soccer and basketball, hiking, and is an avid Game of Thrones fan. 

Email: josh dot glazier at gladstone dot ucsf dot edu


Kelvin Du

Research Associate I

Kelvin earned his B.S. in Molecular, Cell and Developmental biology at UC Santa Cruz, where he studied chromatin as an undergrad in Ro Kamakaka’s lab. Kelvin is interested in studying viral mechanisms. Outside of the lab, Kelvin likes to longboard, play basketball and play with his dog. 

Email: kelvin dot du at gladstone dot ucsf dot edu

Sarah Larkin

Administrative Assistant

Sarah earned her B.S. in Child Development at California Polytechnic State University, San Luis Obispo, where she also received minors in Psychology and Biology. With the Weinberger lab, she manages scheduling meetings, organizing seminars, and other administrative tasks. Outside of the lab, Sarah enjoys reading, backpacking, and seeing live music.

Email: sarah dot larkin at gladstone dot ucsf dot edu


Lab Alumni

Benjamin Martin (Summer Intern 2019)

Current Position: Masters student in the Biology department at École Normale Supérieure Paris-Saclay

Cassandra Thompson (Research Associate 2016-2019)

Current Position: PhD student at the Division of Biology and Biomedical Sciences at Washington University, studying Molecular Microbiology and Microbial Pathogenesis

Seung Yong Jung, PhD (staff scientist 2013-2019)

Roy Dar, Ph.D. (postdoc 2011-2015)

Current Position: Assistant Professor of Bioengineering, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign

Abhyudai Singh, Ph.D. (postdoc 2008-2011)

Current Position: Assistant Professor of Electrical & Computer Engineering, Biomedical Engineering, and Mathematical Sciences, University of Delaware

Igor Rouzine, Ph.D. (Staff Scientist 2011 - 2014)

Current Position: Group Leader - Pierre and Marie Curie University

Jon Klein (Research Associate 2014-2017)

Current Position: MSTP (MD/Ph.D. Program), Yale University

Hye-In Son (Research Associate 2015 - 2017)

Current Position: Bioengineering Ph.D. Program, Duke University

Victoria Saykally (Research Associate 2014 - 2017)

Current Position: University of Pacific Dental School

Kay Aull, Ph.D (Graduate Student - Bioinformatics 2011-2016)

Current Position: Staff Scientist, Thermo-Fisher Scientific.

Elena Ingerman, Ph.D. (Staff Scientist 2013-2016)

Current Position: Staff Scientist, Thermo-Fisher Scientific

Brandon Razooky, Ph.D. (Ph.D. student, 2009-2014)

Current Position: Merck Fellow - Rockefeller University (labs of Dr. Charles Rice)

Soon to be Dr. Luke Rast (Research Associate 2013-2015)

Current Position: Systems Biology PhD. Program, Harvard University

Kate Franz, PhD (Master's student 2009-2011)

Current Position: Scientist at Benitec Biopharma

Timothy Notton (Joint Graduate Program in Bioengineering, UCB & UCSF 2012 - 2017)

Current Position:  Lead Scientist, Autonomous Therapeutics Inc

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Cynthia Bolovan-Fritts, PhD                        

We lost a beloved member of Weinberger lab when Cynthia Bolovan-Fritts passed away in 2017.

Cynthia was the stalwart of the Weinberger lab for many years – in her 10 years here she was a mentor, scientist, friend and supporter both to our lab members, and to the wider scientific community.

Cynthia was born in Miami, received a PhD in Virology from the University of Cincinnati, and completed post-doctoral training with Ed Mocarski at Stanford.  She then came to the Weinberger lab where she spent the last 10 years.  Cynthia loved science and discovery above pretty much all else; she dedicated her career, and truly her life, to studying herpes viruses, and had an encyclopedic knowledge of these viruses.  She was exacting in her technique; to her the science and the lab were what really mattered.  She was an incredibly loyal and principled researcher – the glory didn’t concern at all, the work did.  Few people know that in 1994 during PhD, Cynthia cloned the first mutants of HSV-1 ICP34.5; these mutants went on to become the first approved oncolytic virus therapy, Amgen’s ‘oncovex’, now used to treat late stage Melanoma.  Cynthia never hyped this contribution, despite her claim to precedence. She was one of those unsung heroes.

Over her lifetime, Cynthia supported the preservation of nature and the environment, taking many trips to national parks across the United States with her husband Dan. When walking with Cynthia through San Francisco, one would often have to stop so that she could give money to the homeless.  She also loved music, taught herself to play the guitar, and attended over 50 Grateful Dead concerts. She was a true "dead head” - when Jerry Garcia passed away, Cynthia went to the Pacific Ocean with 5 dozen roses and threw the bouquet into the ocean as a tribute.

She is remembered as a wonderful colleague and friend who was always willing to go the extra mile to help, regardless of the size of the problem. She was a welcoming, generous, dedicated and beloved mentor to young students of virology. Many of her trainees are now in top PhD and medical training programs around the country, including Harvard, Yale and Duke.

As well as the impact she has made to so many aspiring and successful scientists, Cynthia’s memory will live on with the awarding each year of the Cynthia Bolovan-Fritts Research Excellence Award at the Bay Area Virus Meeting. This award will help young researchers embark on careers in research by providing some recognition.

Past Cynthia Bolovan-Fritts Award Winners

2019: Pooja Bhardwaj, PhD

Awarded for her collaborative work with System Biosciences Inc. and ONI Nanoimaging titled ‘Surface engineering of exosomes to block HIV infection as a novel antiviral approach’.

2018: Melanie Ott, PhD

Awarded for her work entitled ‘Hepatitis C Virus Infection and Lipid Droplets: a New Connection via DGAT1’.