Our Research Team

Christina Curtis, PhD, MSc

Assistant Professor of Medicine and Genetics
Stanford University School of Medicine
Co-Director, Molecular Tumor Board, Stanford Cancer Institute

Christina Curtis, PhD, MSc is an Assistant Professor in the Departments of Medicine (Oncology) and Genetics in the School of Medicine at Stanford University where she leads the Cancer Systems Biology Group and serves as Co-Director of the Molecular Tumor Board at the Stanford Cancer Institute. Trained in molecular and computational biology, she received her doctorate from the University of Southern California in 2007 advised by Simon Tavaré, and holds Masters degrees in Bioinformatics and Computational Biology from the University of Southern California and in Molecular and Cellular Biology from the University of Heidelberg, Germany. She has been the recipient of several young investigator awards, including the 2012 V Foundation for Cancer V Scholar Award, the 2012 STOP Cancer Research Career Development Award, a 2016 AACR Career Development Award and was named a Kavli Fellow of the National Academy of Sciences in 2016. Dr. Curtis is the principal investigator on grants from the NIH/NCI, Department of Defense, American Association for Cancer Research, Breast Cancer Research Foundation, Susan G. Komen Foundation, V Foundation for Cancer Research and Emerson Collective. She also serves on the Editorial Boards of Breast Cancer Research, Carcinogenesis: Integrative Biology, the Journal of Computational Biology and JCO Precision Oncology.

Jennifer Caswell, MD

Clinical fellow/Postdoc
MD Harvard

Jennifer is an Oncology fellow at Stanford. She did her internal medicine residency training at UCSF and her medical school and undergraduate studies at Harvard. She is interested in using genomic data to uncover germline and somatic determinants of breast cancer traits, including drug resistance vs response and metastasis.

Joe Charalel

Graduate Student, Genetics
BS, Columbia University (Mathematics)

Joe is interested in (epi)genetic resistance mechanisms.

Jie Ding, PhD

Senior Computational Scientist
PhD Ohio State University;
Postdoc Johns Hopkins/Harvard Biostats (Parmigiani Lab)

Jie has a B.S. in biochemistry and molecular biology and a Ph.D. in biostatistics. His research interests include statistical genetics, statistical computation and Bayesian analysis and the analysis of high-throughput sequencing data for the modeling of tumor heterogeneity and tumor evolution during tumor development, metastasis and the development of drug resistance.

Zheng Hu, PhD

Postdoc (Innovative Genomics Initiative Postdoctoral Fellow)
PhD Beijing Institute of Genomics

Zheng is interested in applying population genetics approaches to study mechanisms of tumor evolution.

Kasper Karlsson, PhD

PhD Karolinksa Institute

Kasper is interested in studying tumor dynamics using experimental and computational approaches.

Zhicheng Ma, MD, MS

Senior Research Associate
MD Hunan Medical University;
MS Central South University, China

Zhicheng is interested in characterizing mechanisms of tumor progression and evolution, as well as in technological developments for cancer ‘omic’ profiling and single cell sequencing.

Katherine Pogrebniak

Katherine received an undergraduate degree in Computer Science from Princeton University and a master's degree in Computational Biology from the University of Cambridge. She is presently an MD/PhD student at Stanford. She is passionate about using computation and data-driven techniques to conduct translational research and is currently interested in using "-omics" data to model cancer metastasis and resistance.

Chris Probert

Graduate Student, Genetics (NSF Fellow); jointly advised with Prof. Anshul Kundaje

Chris is interested in cancer regulatory genomics.

Jose Seoane, PhD

Postdoc (Susan G. Komen Postdoctoral Fellow)
PhD University of Coruna, Spain

Jose obtained his PhD in Computer Science at the Universidade da Coruña (Spain). Throughout his doctoral training, he focused on methods development and application for bioinformatics and machine learning approaches. During his postdoctoral training he contributed to the development of machine learning based approaches and applied them to  cardiovascular and cancer genetic data.  His current interest is in the development of methods to investigate how different layers of (epi)genomic data can be integrated in order to establish a holistic view of the molecular mechanisms underlying cancer initiation and progression.

Alexandra Sockell

Graduate Student, Genetics (NSF Fellow); jointly advised with Prof. Polly Fordyce

BA, Vanderbilt University (Molecular and Cellular Biology)

Alex is interested in developing and applying single-cell microfluidics methods to characterize tumor evolution. 


Krystal Straessler, PhD

Postdoc (Cancer Systems Biology Fellow); jointly advised with Prof. Alejandro Sweet-Codero

Krystal is interested in the genomics and evolution of pediatric sarcomas.

Ruping Sun, PhD

Research Associate
PhD Fudan University, China
Postdoc Columbia University (Califano Lab)


Ruping  is interested in developing novel tools for cancer genome analysis and interpretation. He is also interested in the contribution of non-coding variation to tumor progression.

Johannes Reiter, PhD

Instructor (Erwin Schrödinger Fellow); jointly advised with Prof. Sanjiv Sam Gambhir
PhD Institute of Science and Technology Austria
Postdoc Harvard University

Hannes works at the interface of computer and biomedical sciences and focuses on the stochastic processes underlying cancer evolution. He designs computational methods to learn from large-scale biological data sets and develops mathematical models to generate novel hypothesis and explain clinical observations on a mechanistic level.

Sanavy Lou

Administrative Support

Lab Alumni

Mark Berger

Intern (CS undergrad)

Mark is jointly pursuing a BS and a MSc in Computer Science with emphases in machine learning and biocomputation, respectively. He is interested in a variety of topics that are within the intersection of computer science, biology, and medicine, including rare genetic variation, the heritability of complex diseases, and regulatory genomics.


Sean Hunter

Cancer Bio Rotation Student
BS University of California, Los Angeles

Christina Ji

Summer Student (Computer Science, MIT)

Victoria Li

Summer Student (Biochemistry, UCLA)

Emma Pierson, MSc

Graduate Student (Rotation), Computer Science

Emma Pierson earned a MSc in computer science at Stanford and an MSc in statistics at Oxford and is now a PhD student in computer science. 

Swetha Revanur 

Summer Student (Evergreen Valley High School, San Jose, CA)


Oscar Rueda, PhD

Visiting Scientist (University of Cambridge)



Andrea Sottoriva, PhD

Group Leader, Institute for Cancer Research London
Former Postdoc Curtis Lab