Focus Areas in the Genomic Medicine Cycle
Major leadership positions

Faculty – Harvard Chemical Biology PhD Program


Our lab uses experimental approaches at the intersection of chemical biology, genetics and stem cell biology to investigate cellular pathways relevant to schizophrenia, bipolar disorder, autism and related neuropsychiatric disorders.

We utilize complementary approaches in specific cellular subtypes and in three-dimensional cerebral organoids generated from human iPSCs. We employ a range of methods including high-content imaging to investigate synaptic biology, multi-electrode arrays to examine neuronal function along with transcriptomic, proteomic and metabolomic experiments. We seek to develop new small molecules that can modulate disease-related processes in patient-derived neurons and develop new therapeutic approaches for targeting cognitive deficits in psychiatric disorders.

Priority Projects

  1. Investigating neurobiology of schizophrenia and bipolar disorder using scRNA-seq and multi-electrode arrays in human cerebral organoids
  2. Interrogating cell-type specific differences in disease using iPSC-derived neuronal and glial subtypes, microglia and brain microvascular endothelial cells
  3. Dissecting the role of Arc in synaptic function in human cortical neurons in order to develop novel therapeutics targeting cognition in psychiatric disorders
  4. Elucidating mechanistic underpinnings of maternal immune activation using stage-specific environmental perturbation in developing human cerebral organoids

Lab Members

Stephanie Santarriaga, PhDssantarriaga [@] mgh.harvard.eduPostdoctoral Fellow
Wei-Kai Huang, PhDwhuang19 [@] mgh.harvard.eduPostdoctoral Fellow
Annie Kathuria, PhDakathuria [@] mgh.harvard.eduPostdoctoral Fellow
Paulo Lizano, MD, PhDplizano [@] partners.orgAssistant Professor
Kaia Gerlovinkgerlovin [@] mgh.harvard.eduResearch Technician
Sovannarath Pongspong [@] mgh.harvard.eduResearch Technician
Yasmin Layadiylayadi [@] mgh.harvard.eduGraduate student
Hieu Tranhtran19 [@] mgh.harvard.eduUndergraduate student
Lance Wardlanceward [@] college.harvard.eduUndergraduate student
Suravi Upadhyaysupadhyay3 [@] mgh.harvard.eduHigh school student
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