I was born and raised in Florence, Italy from an Italian/Argentinian mother and a French/Armenian father. I studied and trained in Italy, Australia, Switzerland (PhD) and USA (Postdoc). I lead an academic laboratory at the Gladstone Institutes/UCSF which studies gene regulation in heart disease. I teach theater at Improv at UCSF, a non-profit association that trains scientists to develop their communication skills, spontaneity and leadership through improvisational theater. In my free time, I love to enjoy the wonderful San Francisco with my family and friends.
With a BS in Communications and a unique career background that includes advertising, teaching, and medicine, I eventually found true passion in research and lab work. I am most interested in genomics and immunology, and I am excited for the opportunity to explore both of these interests in the context of heart failure with the Alexanian Lab. I enjoy spending my time exploring both the culinary offerings and the natural beauty of the Bay Area with my family.
My name is Ada Zhu and I graduated from UCLA with a B.S. in Molecular, Cell, and Developmental Biology and a B.A. in Chinese. I am interested in expanding my understanding of gene expression and epigenetic regulation.
In my free time, I like to explore the different neighborhoods of San Francisco and the Bay Area. Although being a San Francisco native, I always feel like there’s so much more to see and do. I also enjoy spending time and trying out new food spots with my family and friends.
Senior Administrative Specialist
I’m a Bay Area native and first generation American. Half Latvian, half Lebanese (via Lima, Peru). I have trained in martial arts for years (kung fu and tai qi), and I have a son at Sonoma State U. I’ve been with Gladstone for nearly 20 years! Feel very lucky to have been part of this organization’s growth. Recently I took up Lagree, which I’d describe as similar to Pilates, but meaner 😉
Senior Research Technologist
Hello I’m Yu, a mouse surgeon and sonographer in the Lab, and a bookworm at home!
I received my PhD from Shanghai Institute of Biochemistry and Cell Biology, Chinese Academy of Sciences, China (2016-2022), where I studied neuroinflammation and senescence in Alzheimer’s disease and found novel drugs. I joined the Alexanian Lab in 2023, where I am studying immunometabolism and neuroinflammatory pathways in cardiovascular diseases. I also want to detect cell-cell connection including muscle, immune and vascular cells in cardiovascular disease.
I worked in international co-production film and media technology before migrating back to a science research journey. To ensure a smooth transition and to improve scientific literacy, I interned at UCSF through the CCSF biotechnology program, working on protein screening and single-cell microfluidics. I completed my undergrad in engineering and economics from Smith College and Graduate Certificates in Film Studies and Big Data Analysis from Beijing Film Academy and UIBE. I am very excited to be a part of the Alexanian Lab as part of my CIRM-funded Stem Cell Internship to explore gene regulation in heart disease.
I’m beginning my graduate studies in biomedical sciences this fall. I like spending time outside, and hanging out with friends. When I can, I like to get away from the city and visit different bodies of water, and if possible camp in the area. My favorite uplifting thing to do is to dance.
The absolute most fun part of being a scientist is the enormous possibility to develop collaborative work at various institutions across the word. Our lab is strongly committed to a culture of collaboration and we feel honored to work with such creative scientists both in academia and industry.