dsc_0041MARCO GALLO, PhD

  • Assistant Professor, University of Calgary, Calgary, AB (2015-present).
  • Postdoctoral fellow, The Hospital for Sick Children, Toronto, ON (2010-2015).
  • PhD in Medical Genetics, The University of British Columbia, Vancouver, BC (2005-2010).
  • BSc (first class honors) in Molecular Biology and Biochemistry, Simon Fraser University, Burnaby, BC (2001-2005). Supervisor: Dr David Baillie.

Marco’s main interest is to understand how the epigenome defines self-renewal hierarchies in brain tumors. His ultimate goal is to identify new and effective ways to target cancer stem cells in brain malignancies.


See Marco’s publications.


MICHAEL JOHNSTON, PhD (postdoctoral fellow)unknown

  • PhD in Genetics, University of California, San Francisco, CA, USA (2011-2016).
  • BSc in Chemistry (Biochemistry Track), University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, NC, USA (2007-2011).
Funded by a Cumming School of Medicine postdoctoral fellowship.

“I am actively engaged in many sequencing-related research questions. As computers become more powerful and sequencing data becomes cheaper to generate, we need more biologists who can work at the command line, too! I am particularly interested in the application of bioinformatic approaches to stem cells and developmental biology. While AFK (away from keyboard), you can find me hiking, skiing, or instigating a game of Backgammon.”

See Michael’s publications.


GIL (SEUNGIL) PAIK, PhD (postdoctoral fellow)

  • PhD in Pharmaceutical Sciences, University of British Columbia, Vancouver, BC, Canada (2013-2018)
  • Researcher at Pasteur Institute, Pangyo, South Korea (2011-2013)
  • MSc in Medical Science, Yonsei University, Seoul, South Korea (2009-2011)
  • BSc in Biology, University of Waterloo, Waterloo, ON, Canada (2003-2008)

Gil is interested in developing immunotherapy approaches to treat glioblastoma. Outside of the lab, he can be found hiking the trails of Rockies, camping or enjoying a bottle of beer (or two).


FRANCESCA MAULE, PhD (postdoctoral fellow)

  • PhD in Developmental Medicine and Health Planning Sciences, University of Padua, Italy (2014-2016)
  • MSc in Medical Biotechnology, University of Bologna, Italy (2010-2013)

Francesca’s research interests include exploring chromatin biology in glioblastoma stem cells. She has experience generating and working with primary cultures and PDX models of pediatric and adult glioblastoma. When not in the lab, Francesca likes spending her time cooking, walking in the mountains and being in contact with nature.


ANA NIKOLIC, MD (PhD candidate)ana-nikolic

  • Neuropathology resident, University of Calgary, Calgary, AB (2012-2017).
  • MD, University of Toronto, Toronto, ON (2008-2012).
  • B. Arts. Sci Hons, McMaster University, Hamilton, ON (2004-2008).

Funded by a fellowship from the Clinician Investigator Program.

Ana is a neuropathologist and a PhD candidate at the University of Calgary. Her research interests include the role of histone variants and 3D chromatin architecture in the pathobiology of glioblastoma. When she’s not in the lab she can be found at bouldering, barre class, or a board gaming session.




  • MSc in Genetic engineering and biotechnology, University of Belgrade, Belgrade, Serbia (2016-2017). Supervisor: Dr Melita Vidakovic.
  • BSc in Molecular biology and physiology, University of Belgrade, Belgrade, Serbia (2011-2016).

Nicoletta’s research interests include exploring the role of epigenomics in glioblastoma. She is planning to pursue PhD degree in this field in Gallo lab. Outside of the lab, she can be found mixing cocktails and performing cooking experiments, in the theatre or enjoying different kinds of sports and dances.


DIVYA SINGHAL, MSc (PhD candidate)

  • M.Sc. in Bioinformatics, Indiana University, Indiana, USA (2016-2018). Supervisor: Dr. Xiaowen Liu
  • Tech in Biotechnology, Amity University, Noida, India (2013-2015).
  • Tech in Biotechnology, Maharshi Dayanand University, Haryana, India (2008-2012).

Funded by an Eyes High International Recruitment Scholarship.

Divya is interested in applying single-cell genomics and epigenomics technologies to glioblastoma.


KATRINA ELLESTAD (research technician)

  • BSc, University of Alberta, Edmonton, AB (2001-2005)Website picture.png

Katrina’s main focus is in vivo experiments and single-cell genomics.



ANNA BOBYN (undergraduate student)


Funded by NSERC undergraduate student research awards.

Anna is currently working on a B.Sc. Honours in Biochemistry at the University of Calgary. She is interested in the 3D genome architecture of self-renewing glioblastoma cells. Her hobbies include hiking, snowboarding, and playing soccer.


LILI DENG (lab manager)