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.

Dr. Ali Kouhi

Dr. Ali Kouhi is a medical doctor practicing in otology, neurotology, and skull base surgery. He obtained his medical degree in Iran and in 2010 received his Otolaryngology-Head and Neck Surgery training from the Tehran University of Medical Sciences.

Dr. Kouhi works as an Associate Professor of Otology, Neurotology at the Tehran University of Medical Sciences. He is a member of Iranian Society of Otolaryngology, Head and Neck Surgery Board of Directors. In addition to patient care and educating residents and fellows in his field, he is also interested in research. Dr. Kouhi has performed clinical studies regarding techniques and outcomes of chronic ear diseases and otosclerosis. He has conducted research projects on cochlear implants and music perception.

Dr. Kouhi's special interest is in Persian traditional music and its role in providing music for CI patients. He also has research projects regarding skull base paraganglioma and vestibular scwhannoma. As chronic ears are common in Iran, chronic ear pathophysiology is a special interest; he is working with Dr. Santa Maria’s lab to conduct research in this area.

Holly Fyffe

Holly Fyffe is a visiting scholar from Arizona State University where she is in the third year of the Doctor of Audiology program. She is interested in pursuing a career in hearing research. She is currently working with Dr. Massa on mucoadhesive hydrogels.

Théa Duchatel

Théa Duchatel is completing a Master in Health Engineering at the Université Grenoble-Alpes. She is currently a Visiting Student Researcher working with Dr. Massa on a biomaterial for drug delivery in the middle ear.

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.

Christine Yang

Christine Yang is a freshman undergraduate student at Stanford pursuing a degree in Bioengineering. She is interested in pursuing a medical degree and a career in surgery. She is currently working with Dr. Massa on mucoadhesive hydrogels.

Hui Ting Goh

Hui Ting is a final-year student majoring in Biological Sciences in Nanyang Technological University, Singapore. She is currently a Visiting Student Researcher in Dr. Santa Maria’s laboratory, working on deciphering bacterial biofilm interactions in the middle ear. Her research interests include biofilms, microbiology, immunology and bacterial pathogenesis.