People-Torii Lab Members
Dr. Keiko Torii
Principal Investigator

Endowed Distinguished Professor of Biology

Investigator, HHMI-GBMF

Oversea Principal Investigator, ITbM, Nagoya University

She is the lab head. The extreme coffee addict, dedicates her life for exciting research on plant developmental biology and cell-cell signaling!


Dr. Julian Avila
Dr. Julian Avila
Postdoctoral Researcher

profile Dr. Avila's profiles: Website

Julian earned his PhD in Biochemistry at Texas A&M University studying postranslational modifications in the AMP-dependent protein kinases in Tomato. In the Torii lab Julian's research focuses on elucidationg the early phosphorylation signaling events controlling stomatal development, more specifically during the perception of signaling peptides by ERECTA-family receptor kinases. On his free time Julian enjoys sketching, exploring Seattle's dining, and taking his dog Chia to the park.

Dr. Robin Horst
Dr. Robin Horst
Postdoctoral Researcher

DFG Postdoctoral Fellow

Robin earned his Ph.D. in Dr. Uwe Sonnewalds' lab at the University of Erlangen-Nuremberg, Germany. He studied the physiology of the pathogenic interaction between the smut fungus Ustilago maydis. In the Torii lab, Robin is taking a large-scale biology approach to understand regulatory networks driving stomatal differentiation.

Dr. Soon-Ki Han
Dr. Soon-Ki Han
Postdoctoral Researcher

Soon-Ki earned her Ph.D. in the lab of Dr. Doris Wagner at the University of Pennsylvania. She studied the role of chromatin remodelers in Abscisic acid responses in Arabidopsis. In the Torii lab, Soon-Ki studies how bHLH transcription factors coordinate the signaling output to their target genes during stomata differentiation.

Dr. Aarthi Putrajunan
Dr. Aarthi Putarjunan
Postdoctoral Researcher

Aarthi earned her PhD in Genetics from the lab of Dr. Steven Rodermel at the Iowa State University characterizing signaling events mediating chloroplast biogenesis in Arabidopsis. In the Torii lab, Aarthi is interested in understanding signaling pathways mediating the degradation of SCREAMs.

Dr. Michal Maes
Dr. Michal Maes
Postdoctoral Researcher

Michal earned her PhD in Chemistry at the Hebrew university of Jerusalem. She stuied biophysical characterization of bacterial proteins. In the Torii lab, Michal will use advanced biophysical methods to fully characterize the interaction between the ERECTA-family receptor kinases and the EPF/EPFL family of signaling peptides.

Dr. Yashodar Babu
Dr. Yashodar Babu
Postdoctoral Researcher

Yashodar earned his PhD in Biology at  Martin Bayer group, Max Planck Institute from Developmental Biology/University of Tubingen studying early embryogenesis in Arabidopsis. In the Torii lab Yashodar's research focuses on dynamics of stomatal development and phosphorylation substrates of ERECTA.

Dr. Xingyun Qi
Dr. Xingyun Qi
Postdoctoral Researcher

Xingyun earned her PhD in Cell Biology in Hugo Zheng's lab at McGill University, Montreal, where she studied the role of RabA proteins in TGN-related membrane trafficking pathways and the function of endoplasmic reticulum in determining the cell polarity. In the Torii lab, Xingyun focuses on the in vivo/in situ interaction between ERL1 and TMM, as well as the ligand-mediated behaviors of the receptor dimers, to explore the establishment of meristemoid polarity.

Lisa Lin

Lisa Lin
Research Technician

Mary Gates Research Scholar

Lisa (Ya-Chen) Lin is now a research technician of the Torii lab! l Her research is to investigate the role of different EPF peptides in stomatal patterning. In her spare time she likes to sing. Now Lisa is preparing for graduate school admission.

Dr. Marketa Hnilova
Dr. Marketa Hnilova
Guest postdoc

Marketa is a Senior researcher at the UW Materials Science and Engineering. She is specialized in nano-biotechnology. In the Torii lab, she performs EPF peptide purification, production of receptor biosensor chips for quantitative measurements of ligand-receptor interactions.

Emily Lo

Emily Lo
Undergraduate Researcher

Biology Sergant Awardee

Emily is an undergraduate researcher studying biology and computer science as a sophomore at the University of Washington. In the Torii Lab, Emily studies and visualizes peptide activities that play a role in specifying plant epidermal patterning. Outside of the lab, she is a reading, puzzle-solving, and culinary arts enthusiast!

Milan Vu
Milan Vu
Undergraduate Researcher

Mary Gates Research Scholar & Levinson Scholar

Milan Vu is an undergraduate researcher and attends the University of Washington as asenior majoring in Biology. Milan studies the biocheical and developmental roles of receptor kinases in stomatal cell lineages. When she’s not in class or in the lab, she loves to hike, travel, and eat delicious Italian food.

Alex H

Alex Hoffstetter
Research Technologist I

 

Alex is a research technician in the Torii lab. He is currently working on protein purification and ERECTA binding events. Alex is preparing to apply to medical school in 2015. During his free time, he enjoys video games, cooking, exploring Seattle, and studying photography.

Allana
Allana Weimann
Lab Assistant II

Allana is a Laboratory Assistant in the Torii Lab.  She helps fellow researchers with their projects as well as performing tasks to keep the lab clean and functioning.  Prior to the Torii Lab, she was doing pre-clinical cancer research as well as helping the USDA sequence the genome of Pseudomonas fluorescens L5.1-96, a bacteria that helps protect the roots of wheat plans.  Outside of the lab, Allana loves to crochet and play the piano.

Brendan

Brendan Young
Undergrad Lab Assistant & Researcher

Brendan is a Senior studying Microbiology at the University of Washington who is happy to be learning both in class at in the Torii lab about modern research techniques. In addition to Biology, he’s a big fan of experimental music, theatre and the outdoors.

Giselle Fernandez
Giselle Fernandez
Undergrad Lab Assistant & Researcher

 

Giselle Fernandes is a junior attending the University of Washington as a general biology major. Giselle is currently collaborating on a research project focusing on understanding the consequences of MAPK activation on SCRM proteins. Outside of lab and class, she enjoys biking around the Pacific Northwest, volunteering at local hospitals, and working for UW’s First Year Programs.

 

Cosmos

Cosmos Peng
Undergrad Lab Assistant

Cosmo Peng is an undergraduate lab assistant and is a junior majoring in biology at the University of Washington. He enjoys watching soccer, sketching, and playing video games.

Athena Bollozow
Athena Bollozos
Undergraduate Administrative Assistant

 

Athena is a sophomore at the University of Washington and she intends to major in biochemistry. In her free time she enjoys going to concerts, exploring the natural wonders of Washington, and dancing

 

 

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Vasal Mahanian

Mari Torii-Karch
Special lab volunteer

 

Mari is the youngest member of the Torii lab. She competes for gymnastics and loves Pipetman tip packing!

 

 

 

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