The Jagannathan Lab Team

Dr. Prasanna Jagannathan | Principal Investigator

    Prasanna Jagannathan, MD, joined the faculty at Stanford University in 2017. Dr. Jagannathan is an infectious disease specialist with a research program in human immunology and infectious diseases.

    Following his undergraduate degree in Religious Studies at the University of California, Berkeley, Dr. Jagannathan taught high school science in Los Angeles through Teach for America. He then went to Harvard Medical School to earn his MD, before completing internal medicine residency and infectious diseases fellowship at UCSF. He was a post-doc and junior faculty member in the laboratory of Dr. Margaret Feeney at UCSF prior to joining the faculty at Stanford in 2017. 

    Dr. Jagannathan's current research program focuses on understanding correlates and mechanisms of naturally acquired immunity to malaria through field-based studies, and to better understand the immunologic consequences of malaria control interventions. His group is also evaluating novel therapeutic strategies for patients with mild to moderate COVID-19. 

The Lab Team

Life Science Research

Diego Martinez Mori

Diego is a recent graduate of the University of California, Santa Cruz where he majored in Molecular, Cell, and Developmental Biology. He recently joined the Jagannathan Lab in May 2020 as a Life Science Research Professional. His background is based in molecular biology, studying transcription factor expression in the developmental stages of C. elegans, in the lab of Dr. Jordan Ward at UC Santa Cruz. Diego aspires to continue his education and eventually obtain an MD or MD/PhD. In his freetime, he loves to try new foods, play video games, discover new musical artists, and learn more about plants!


Nick Zehner











Daniel Ruiz-Betancourt

Daniel is an M.D. student at the Stanford University School of Medicine and is interested in infectious disease and global health. He studied Neuroscience and Behavior at Columbia University where he worked with Dr. Gaurav Patel studying visual processing and attention deficits in patients with schizophrenia. His current work with Dr. Jagannathan focuses on studying innate immune responses to TLR-ligand stimulation in patients infected with SARS-CoV-2.

Outside of lab, Daniel can be found rocking out to 90s grunge and drinking strawberry milkshakes.


Kenneth Musinguzi

    Kenneth Musinguzi is an immunology laboratory technician working with the infectious diseases research collaboration (IDRC). He is interested in understanding how immunity to malaria develops. He's been with IDRC for 6 years. Kenneth possesses a master's degree in biomedical laboratory sciences and management. He has tremendously contributed research efforts towards IDRC's projects which seek to understand the immunology of malaria infection in pregnant women and children below 5 years. Kenneth has so far co-authored 4 peer reviewed publications during his time in IDRC.

    Previously, Kenneth worked as an immunology laboratory technologist at Uganda Virus Research Institute where he gained expertise in the immunology of HIV/AIDS infection. His research efforts led to 3 peer reviewed papers.




Stephen Tukwasibwe

Stephen’s background is in the field of biomedical sciences with extensive experience in Molecular biology, Biotechnology, Immunology and Biochemistry. Over the past 10 years, Stephen has been involved in both training and research. In September, 2017, Stephen was appointed as an Honorary Lecturer in the Department of Medical Biochemistry, Makerere University College of Health Sciences where he is involved in conducting lectures and tutorials for both undergraduate and postgraduate students within the Department of Medical Biochemistry. Stephen also contributes in the teaching of students pursuing a Bachelor’s degree in Cytotechnology in the Department of Pathology, Makerere University College of Health Sciences. Stephen has won several awards and fellowships including; the Junior Investigator Award at the MU-UCSF-LSHTM-IDRC Junior Investigators Research Symposium in January, 2014 for the high ranking MSc Research project which was published in the Journal of Infectious Diseases (PMID: 24446524). In August 2016, Stephen was awarded a highly competitive Wellcome trust PhD fellowship award through the Makerere University/Uganda Virus Research Institute infection and immunity research and training program to pursue a PhD fellowship in Immunology. The PhD fellowship has been successfully completed, and the thesis has been submitted for examination. Recently, Stephen was awarded a special project by the East African International Center of Excellence in Malaria Research (ICMER) program funded by the National Institutes of Health (Grant No. U19AI089674) to undertake a special project titled, “Role of antimalarial antibodies in functional modulation of natural killer cell response to malaria infection”. This special project is being carried out under the mentorship of Dr. Prasanna Jagannathan from Stanford University, USA and Prof. Philip Rosenthal from University of California, San Francisco, USA. Stephen has authored and co-authored several peer-reviewed publications.


Kassie Dantzler

    Kassie joined the Jagannathan lab as a postdoctoral fellow in 2017. Ever since spending a summer in West Africa as an undergraduate, she has been passionate about malaria vaccine development and researching biological mechanisms of natural immunity to malaria. She received a B.S. in Ecology & Evolutionary Biology from Yale University and a Ph.D. in Biological Sciences in Public Health from the Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health, where she was a Herchel Smith Fellow and Edgar Haber Award recipient.

Maureen Ty


    Maureen joined the Jagannathan lab as a postdoc in the summer of 2018. Currently, she is trying to understand the role of NK cells in naturally immunity to malaria. Previously, she obtained her PhD in the lab of Ana Rodriguez at the NYU School of Medicine, where she also studied malaria! Outside the lab, she likes to eat (a lot), read, and travel with family and friends.


Kattria van der Ploeg

Kattria joined the Jagannathan lab as a postdoc in the fall of 2020. She is currently investigating the immune system of SARS-CoV-2 infected patients in a randomized Lambda vs. placebo clinical trial. During her PhD at University of Cambridge and previous postdoc at MSKCC she spent most of her time on investigating and understanding NK cell biology in the setting of CMV infection and hematopoietic stem cell transplantation . She received a M.Sc. and B.Sc. in Biomedical Sciences at the University of Leiden in the Netherlands.


Karen Jacobson

I fell in love with Global Health as a Stanford undergraduate when I had the opportunity to work in Tanzania on HIV prevention.  As a medical student at Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai, I continued to seek out global health opportunities. In 2013-2014, I spent a year in rural South Africa researching treatment and prevention of tuberculosis as a Doris Duke clinical research fellow. After my residency in Internal Medicine and HIV primary care at Yale-New Haven Hospital, I returned to my alma mater to start my Infectious Diseases fellowship at Stanford.  I joined the Jagannathan lab as a postdoctoral fellow in July 2020. I am currently working on the clinical trial of Interferon Lambda as a treatment in patients with mild COVID-19, and their long term follow up.



Lauren de la Parte

Heman Gill

Margaret Murray