SYSTEMS BIOLOGY OF HOST-MICROBIOME INTERACTIONS

Weldon School of Biomedical Engineering
Purdue University

The Brubaker Lab develops systems biology approaches

to model host-microbiome interactions and identify novel

 therapeutic strategies for complex inflammatory diseases. 

 
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PI: DOUG BRUBAKER

He/Him/His

Dr. Brubaker obtained his Ph.D. in Systems Biology and Bioinformatics under the supervision of Dr. Mark R. Chance in the Center for Proteomics and Bioinformatics at Case Western Reserve University. As part of the March of Dimes Prematurity Research Center - Ohio Collaborative, his dissertation focussed on network and dynamical systems modeling of signaling networks in preterm birth. Dr. Brubaker pursued postdoctoral studies with Dr. Douglas Lauffenburger in the Department of Biological Engineering at MIT where he developed computational methods to translate observations from animal models to humans. Dr. Brubaker started as an Assistant Professor in the Weldon School of Biomedical Engineering at Purdue University in Fall 2020. The Brubaker Lab aims to understand the core mechanisms by which (i) host physiology is regulated by microbiomes and (ii) microbiome ecology and function are regulated by the host. We are a highly collaborative group with current efforts focused on Inflammatory Bowel Diseases, Musculoskeletal Pathologies, Type 2 Diabetes, and Bacterial Vaginosis. 

 

THE TEAM: GRADUATE STUDENTS AND RESEARCH STAFF

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BRENDAN BALL

Graduate Research Assistant

T32 BTDR Fellow

Hometown:

Degree Program: Ph.D. (Biomedical Engineering)

Project:

Goals and Hobbies:

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JAVIER MUNOZ

(HE/HIM)

Graduate Research Assistant

Hometown: Quito, Ecuador

Degree Program: Ph.D. (Agricultural and Biological Engineering)

Project: Modeling host-microbiome interactions in inflammatory bowel disease pathobiology and therapeutic resistance.

Goals and Hobbies: I am interested in developing computational models to study how the microbiome impacts human health. When not in lab, I like hiking and learning computer languages. 

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ALAN TRINH

(HE/HIS)

Summer IMPRS Fellow

Co-mentored with Dr. Deva Chan

Hometown: Lafayette, IN
Degree Program: Doctorate of Medicine - Indiana University School of Medicine
Graduation Year: 2024
Project: Trans-omic Modeling of Metabolomics and Transcriptomics
Goals and Hobbies: I plan to pursue a career as a physician in which I can integrate research knowledge with clinical skills to provide the best care for patients. In my free time, I like to enjoy the outdoors by hiking and golfing.

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MEGAN BAKER

(SHE/HER)

Laboratory Technician

Hometown: Fort Collins, CO
Graduation Year: BS 2019 (Rose-Hulman), MS 2021 (Purdue)
Project: Lab administration and establishing a germ-free gut model
Goals: Gain skills and knowledge by getting my PhD so that I can become a better professor and scientist, summit one of the major peaks in the world
Hobbies: hiking, climbing, my kitty

 

THE TEAM: UNDERGRADUATE STUDENTS

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ALEXANDER BERGENDORF

(HE/HIM)

Undergradaute Researcher

Hometown: Glen Ellyn, IL

Degree Program: Bachelor of Science - Biomedical Engineering

Graduation Year: 2023

Project Description: Developing cell type deconvolution approaches for cell type-specific modeling of host-microbiome interactions in IBD. 

Goals and Hobbies: My goal is to continue to get experience in the field of medicine andbioinformatics so I will be able to continue my higher education at a graduate or medical school. My hobbies include playing tennis, working out, traveling, and volunteering.

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MAYA FEDERLE

(SHE/HER)

Undergraduate Researcher

Co-mentored with Dr. Deva Chan

Hometown: Columbus, IN

Degree Program: Bachelor of Science - Biomedical Engineering

Graduation Year: 2024

Project: The role of vitamin D metabolism in osteoarthritis and the gut-joint axis.

Goals and Hobbies: Maya hopes to attend medical school after her time at Purdue. She hopes to spend time abroad and minor in Spanish. Maya enjoys spending time outside (especially with her dogs), trying new foods, painting, exercising, and reading. 

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JASON MAIR

(HE/HIM/HIS)

Undergraduate Researcher

Hometown: Jasper, IN

Degree Program: Biological Engineering, concentration in cellular and biomolecular engineering

Graduation Year: 2024

Project: Microbiomes, endometriosis, and diagnostics.

Goals and Hobbies: My goals include graduating and having an impact on the world through biomedical or pharmaceutical engineering.  Some hobbies of mine include sports (golf, soccer, baseball, basketball) and consumer technology.

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ANIRUDH SIVARAJAN

(HE/HIM/HIS)

Undergraduate Researcher

Hometown: Naperville,IL

Degree Program: Biomedical Engineering, minor: statistics

Graduation Year: Fall 2022

Project: My project involves creating models from several cancer databases to understand drug resistance. 

Goals and Hobbies: Running, hiking, tennis, and anything fun!

 

CONTACT INFORMATION

206 S. Martin Jischke Dr.
MJIS 3096
Weldon School of Biomedical Engineering
West Lafayette, IN 47906

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