Recruiting lab members at all levels now, apply here.


Huaiying Zhang, Ph.D.
Principal Investigator

Assistant Professor, Department of Biological Sciences, Department of Chemical Engineering (courtesy), Molecular Biophysics and Structural Biology (MBSB) graduate program, CMU
Postdoctoral fellow
     Dartmouth College, Cell Biology, lab of Dr. Amy Gladfelter
     Princeton University, Biophysics, lab of Dr. Clifford Brangwynne
     University of Pennsylvania, Cancer Cell Biology, lab of Dr. Michael Lampson
Ph.D., Chemical Engineering, McGill University, lab of Dr. Reghan Hill
M.S., Chemical Technology, Chinese Academy of Sciences, lab of Drs. Jianming Xing and Huizhou Liu
B.E., Applied Chemistry, China University of Mining and Technology (Beijing)


Meng XuMeng Xu, Ph.D.

I come from China and I got my Ph.D. degree at the Institute of Genetics and Developmental Biology (IGDB), Chinese Academy of Sciences (CAS) in 2016. I am interested in cell biology, especially membrane-less organelle formation by phase transition and its biological role in physiological and pathological conditions. I like playing basketball, pickleball, or just walking outside during my free time.    


Jason Tones

B.S. in Microbiology and Cell Science, University of Florida

After 20 years in the restaurant industry and 3 years as a stay home dad I earned my   microbiology degree in 2018 and began working in the Zhang lab in 2019. In my free time I like to make pasta, try my hand at home fermentation, and occasionally golf.    


Rongwei Zhao
Ph.D. Student  

B.S. in Biological Sciences, Beijing Normal University

I am from Beijing, China. Among the various fields in biology, molecular and cell biology intrigues me most because it not only allows us to elucidate the unknown mechanism of cell regulation, but is also essential for discovery and development of therapeutics and pharmaceuticals in the long run. In my free time I like hiking, traveling and appreciating sweeties.


Tafadzwa Chigumira
Ph.D. Student

M.S. in Chemical Engineering, Howard University

I completed my master’s in Chemical Engineering at Howard University and moved right into the PhD program at CMU. I’m looking forward to delving into the world of cell biology and discovering extended applications of chemical engineering principles. My hobbies include listening to audible books, watching C, K and Thai dramas and hunting down good (and cheap) food.    


Josiah KratzJosiah Kratz
Ph.D. Student

B.S. in Physics and Chemistry, Houghton College

I completed my bachelor’s degree in physics and chemistry at Houghton College. At CMU, I look forward to using my quantitative skills to study biological problems. When I’m not doing schoolwork, you can probably find me playing or watching soccer.


Will O’Connell
Ph.D. Student in Chemical Engineering

A.S. in Pre-Engineering, Henry Ford College
B.S. in Chemical and Biomolecular Engineering, New York University

As a researcher, I am interested in furthering the understanding of liquid-liquid phase separation as it pertains to ALT cancers.  Outside the lab, I love to engage with all different types of animals–I started my own shelter to help rehabilitate rescue dogs, and I am in the process of building a vivarium for a chameleon I plan to adopt.


Sabrina TsaiSabrina Tsai
M.S. Student in Computational Biology 

B.S. in Biochemistry & Molecular Biology University of Massachusetts Amherst

My bachelor’s in Biochemistry as well as a minor in Information Technology developed my interest in the field of Computational Biology. After beginning my studies at CMU, I wanted to apply my knowledge from both fields to research. I enjoy drawing & painting and going rock climbing during my free time.


Astha Tripathi
Undergraduate Student in Biology

I am currently pursuing a Major in Biological Sciences and Minor in Hispanic Studies at CMU. I joined the Zhang lab in 2020, and have since enjoyed combining my studies in biology with real world research applications. In my free time, I like trying new food, hiking, and volunteering as an EMT.