Spiekerkoetter Lab

News from the Lab

March 2024

Job Opening: Undergraduate Student Lab Assistant
Eligible for the Federal Work-Study Program

The Spiekerkoetter Lab is a pulmonary and cardiovascular disease research lab located in Stanford’s Research Park and is looking for a dedicated student worker to fill a new lab assistant position. The position is part-time work (6-10 hours a week, variable and flexible) to help with the characterization of a new genetic mouse line that replicates pulmonary arteriovenous malformations in the vascular disease hereditary hemorrhagic telangiectasia. The student will assist an instructor of the lab in the acquisition and analysis of microscopic images of pulmonary arteriovenous malformations. The student will be paid by the hour with preference given to students interested in pursuing a career in medicine and/or research, however, previous lab experience is not mandatory.

The position is on-site at Stanford’s Research Park without the option to work remotely. The candidate will need to have reliable transportation.

February 2024

We welcome Dr. Helena Turton, a new postdoctoral research fellow in the lab. 

Helena received her MSc in Oncology at the University of Nottingham, UK (2017-2018). There her research focused on the role of hypoxia in colorectal cancer. After graduation Helena was appointed as a Research Assistant to Dr. Roger Thompson in the Pulmonary Vascular Research Group at the University of Sheffield, UK, as formerly led by Professor Allan Lawrie. It was at this time that Helena became interested in hypoxia/high altitude induced pulmonary hypertension. 

November 2023

We welcome Dr. Yue Qi, a new postdoctoral research fellow in the lab. 

After graduating with a BS in Life Sciences and Biotechnology from Wuhan, University, China, Yue completed her PhD in Molecular and Cellular Pharmacology at the University of Miami. She gained valuable experience in the Drug Discovery group in Cardio-Metabolism at 23andMe before coming back to academia to pursue further training as a postdoctoral fellow in November 2023. 

November 2023

Congratulations to Instructor Adam Andruska, MD, MSME for receiving the PHA Innovation Research Award!  

His research focusses on how the interaction between T-cells and vascular cells is involved in vascular remodeling and may serve as a therapeutic target in PAH.  Adam's science is guided by mentors Maya Kumar, PhD and Edda Spiekerkoetter, MD, with support from collaborator Mark Krasnow, MD, PhD.

The Reviewers emphasized that “This proposal is highly innovative and will link key concepts regarding pulmonary vascular biology with inflammation and immunologic mechanisms regarding fundamental T cell biology. The innovativeness and impact are high, given the relative paucity of work in this arena” and summarized the strength as “Outstanding science and beautifully presented proposal”.

This grant builds on his research funded by the Parker B. Francis Award last year.

August 2023

New Spiekerkoetter Lab Manager

Tianyi Zhang, MSc, joined the Spiekerkoetter lab as a new lab manager in August 2023, after having completed her master's degree in Medical Physiology from Case Western Reserve University and a BSc in Neurosciences from the University of Michigan. Welcome, Tianyi!

March 2023

Congratulations to Katharina Schimmel, PhD for receiving the Parker B Francis Fellowship Award 2023 for her project entitled: Pulmonary Arteriovenous Malformations in Hereditary Hemorrhagic Telangiectasia (HHT).

Her aims are to determine the role of somatic mutations as well as second pathogenic rare germline variants of HHT and non-HHT genes that increase the risk of AVM development in the lung and brain. In addition to her primary mentor Dr. Edda Spiekerkoetter, she has assembled a strong team of additional co-mentors and collaborators: 

Co-Mentors: Alokkumar Jha, PhD (Weill Cornell University) and Mark Nicolls, MD at Stanford University. Collaborators: Evan Brittain, MD (Vanderbilt University), Karin Tran-Lundmark, MD, PhD (Lund University, Sweden), Gary Steinberg, MD, PhD (Stanford University).

Katharina Schimmel also received the Career Development Award 2023 from the American Heart Association


Congratulations to Kenzo Ichimura, MD, PhD for being selected as one of the 2023 Ignite Fellows. The Stanford Ignite Program is a program in entrepreneurship and innovation for working professionals and graduate students that provides the business fundamentals necessary to succeed at any entrepreneurial or intrapreneurial venture. 


December 2022

Congratulations to Katharina Schimmel, PhD for presenting her research about a novel mouse model of pulmonary AVMs oral presentation at the International Vascular Biology Meeting (IVBM), Oakland, CA, October 13-17, 2022, for which she received the Stanford Cardiovascular Institute Travel Award.  

November 2022

Congratulations to Kenzo Ichimura, MD, PhD who was selected as Finalist for the prestigious AHA Cournand and Comroe Early Career Investigator Award at the American Heart Association Scientific Sessions in Chicago, November, 2022.

September 29-October 2, 2022

Attending the 14th HHT International Scientific Conference: Katharina Schimmel (Postdoc), Sheetal Vaghela (nurse coordinator, Stanford HHT COE), Edda Spiekerkoetter (director HHT Stanford COE)

August 2022

Congratulations to Rodriguez Cantu Valadez, who presented his research about “Spatial Transcriptomics of BMPR2 signaling in advanced lung lesions in PAH” in front of the Stanford Community as well as friends and family. Rodriguez spent his summer between his junior and senior year as a SIMR Student in the Spiekerkoetter lab. He was mentored by Instructor, Adam Andruska. He will return to Los Gatos High School to complete his senior year before heading off to college.

The Stanford Institutes of Medicine Summer Research Program (SIMR) is an eight-week program in which high school students from diverse backgrounds are invited to perform basic research with Stanford faculty, postdoctoral fellows, students and researchers on a medically-oriented project. The goals of the program include increasing interest in biological sciences and medicine in high school students, helping students to understand how scientific research is performed, and increasing diversity of students and researchers in the sciences.

July 2022

Congratulations to Adam Andruska, MD for receiving the prestigious Parker B Francis Fellowship Award for his research project: Identifying T cell-vascular signaling as a driver of pulmonary hypertension. Adam will be mentored for this award by Dr. Maya Kumar and Dr. Edda Spiekerkoetter.


The limited treatment options for patients with end-stage pulmonary arterial hypertension (PAH) and right heart failure that I observed as a Pulmonary and Critical Care fellow at Hannover Medical School in Germany in the early 2000s were the reason I sought out basic research training in vascular biology under the mentorship of Dr. Marlene Rabinovitch at Stanford University.