Lab Members


Sichen (Susan) Shao

Principal Investigator

sichen_shao [at]
Google_scholar   ORCID   @sshao714

Susan was born in China and grew up in Texas. She trained with Manu Hegde in the JHU-NIH graduate partnerships program and at the MRC LMB. She enjoys designing experiments, interpreting unexpected results, and marveling at the elegance of cellular mechanisms. Work in the Shao lab has been recognized by the Vallee Foundation, a Packard Fellowship, and the NIH New Innovator award.


Michael McKenna

Postdoctoral Fellow

michael_mckenna [at]
AHA Fellow 2018-2020

Mike is from the UK and did his PhD with Prof. Stephen High at the University of Manchester.


Jingjing Gao

Postdoctoral Fellow

jingjing_gao [at]
Reed Memorial Fellow

Jingjing is from China and did her PhD research in the lab of Ye Xiang at Tsinghua University.


João Coelho

Postdoctoral Fellow

joao_coelho [at]

João is from Portugal and did his PhD with Prof. Matthias Feige at the Technical University of Munich.


Haruka Chino

Postdoctoral Fellow

haruka_chino [at]
Takeda Science Foundation Fellow

Haruka is from Japan and did her PhD research in the lab of Noboru Mizushima at The University of Tokyo. She is interested in how cells maintain protein quality control.


Yingshi Peng

Postdoctoral Fellow

yingshi_peng [at]
ORCID   @sshao714

Yingshi is from China and did his PhD with Prof. Elizabeth R. Gavis at Princeton University. He enjoys hiking, skiing, and running marathons.


Michael Rale

Postdoctoral Fellow

michael_rale [at]

Michael is from Los Angeles, California and did his PhD research with Prof. Sabine Petry at Princeton University. He enjoys writing short stories, reading, photography, and being near the ocean. Also loves dogs and cats.


Dawafuti Sherpa

Postdoctoral Fellow

dawafuti_sherpa [at]

Dawa grew up in Nepal and moved to Germany for higher education. She did her PhD with Prof. Brenda Schulman at the Max Planck Institute of Biochemistry, Munich. Outside of lab, she loves taking long walks in nature, running, and hiking.


Samantha Sedor

Graduate Student (BBS)

sedors [at]
NHLBI F31 Fellow
ORCID   @sshao714

Sam is from Philadelphia, where she did her undergraduate research with Virginia Lee at the University of Pennsylvania. Outside of lab, she likes to go hiking and camping.


Muskaan Vasandani

Research Associate

muskaan_vasandani [at]

Muskaan is from India and did her undergraduate research with the Bergstralh lab at the University of Rochester. She enjoys painting, reading, and watching movies.



Lab Dog

bark [at] squirrels

Sage is from Texas. She can be persuaded to sit, stay, speak, shake, high-five, lie down, roll over, catch, jump, and (usually) come when called.

Lab Pets