The Team

Jing Chen

Jing Chen is a research scientist who obtained her Bachelor­ of Medicine in China, and double Master degrees in Public Health and Environmental Toxicology in China and Canada, respectively. Before joining the Santa Maria lab, Jing worked at the University of Louisville in Kentucky as a technician, technologist and then research associate in three different labs specializing in different animal diseases models combined with microsurgery. This included pressure overloaded hypertrophic cardiomyopathy and heart failure through ascending aortic constriction (AAC), myocardial ischemia induced by coronary artery occlusion (CC), and hind-limb ischemia by ligation of femoral artery in mice. She has experience in techniques to create chemical lung injury (inflammation and fibrosis) induced by chlorine gas in mice and rabbits. She was also focused on studies in diabetic complications including cardiomyopathy, nephropathy and ischemic angiogenesis.

Dr. Anping Xia

Dr. Anping Xia is a Sr. Research Scientist specializing in inner ear research. She has been assisting and advising Dr. Peter Santa Maria on the setup of his Lab. She has also been actively helping out on the projects in the Lab. In her prior role, she was working in Dr. John Oghalai’s Lab in creating a transgenic mouse model, gene regulation, and gene therapy in the inner ear. In recent years, she also worked on cochlea physiology and cochlea mechanics in different animal models including mouse, gerbil, and chicken. While in Dr. Oghalai’s Lab, she trained other researchers routinely. She obtained her Ph.D. in Neuroscience from Tohoku University, Japan, and her MD from Shandong University School of Medicine, China.

Dr. Kelly Khomtchouk

Dr. Kelly Khomtchouk is a postdoctoral scientist in the lab working on determining how bacterial biofilms in chronic suppurartive otitis media manage to escape detection and evade defense by the immune system. Before joining the Santa Maria lab, Kelly worked in Miami as a Senior Scientist specializing in clinical affairs and taught biology courses as a faculty member at a local college. She graduated with her PhD from the University of Miami's Microbiology and Immunology Program in the laboratory of Dr. Richard Riley and received her B.Sc. in Biology from Indiana University.

Dr. Solange Massa

Dr. Solange Massa is a medical doctor and scientist developing biomaterials for tissue engineering. An MIT Innovator under 35 and Women at the Frontier Game Changer, Massa explores the latest technologies in 3D printing and material science to create medical devices. In her latest award-winning work she developed vascular, liver and cardicac Organ-on-a-Chip platforms for drug toxicity testing. Her postgraduate work includes studies at Harvard-MIT Health Sciences & Technology, Universidad de los Andes and Universidad de Chile in cell biology, neuroscience and nanotechnology. Her work has been featured in MIT Technology Review, BBC, Wired and numerous scientific journals.

Layla Joseph

Layla Joseph is a sophomore undergraduate student at Stanford pursing a degree in Human Biology with a minor in Spanish. As a pre-medical student, she is exploring the intersection of race/ethnicity studies and medicine. Following medical school, she is interested in pursuing a career in surgery. In the lab, she will be assisting in research studying the pathogenesis of bacterial biofilms within the middle ear in a rodent model system to better assess the in vivo effectiveness of novel therapeutics.