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People of the Geiss Laboratory

Current Worker Bees

Chao Chen joined Prof. Brian Geiss’ lab in summer 2018. He is currently a postdoctoral fellow.​

I am a chemistry PhD candidate with a focus in chemical biology and joint between Dr. Brian Geiss and Dr. Martin McCullagh. My research focuses on the understanding of molecular mechanisms for both the NS3 helicase and NS5 RNA capping of dengue virus during viral replication. 

I use electrochemistry principles and techniques to develop new detection platforms for viral diagnostics.  Although I am a molecular biologist, my work is interdisciplinary and incorporates principles and techniques from many fields including virology, surface chemistry, engineering, and electrochemistry.​

I am working on a project where we intend to develop thermobodies with tight binding affinity to the zika envelope protein that could be used in test diagnostics or therapeutic purposes. 

I am currently a PhD student in the Cell and Molecular Biology program. My research is aimed towards understanding the mechanistic details behind flavivirus replication.


My work entails elucidating the biochemistry of the flavivirus DENV NS5 RNA capping enzyme, which plays a critical role in flavivirus replication. This polyfunctional enzyme presents a unique set of targets for study in hopes of developing antiviral agents that can disrupt its activity, thereby inhibiting or preventing virus replication. Therefore, to gain further insight into the capping mechanism, I wish to define the structures of key components involved at the molecular and atomic level.


Colin Cowdrey
Cherlyn Sackal*
Summer Stec*
Angela Deherrera*
Robert Sons*
Hamid Gari*
Brett Rosenberg*
Lisa Shimonkivitz*
Lanette Rickborn*
Colin Cowdrey*
Siddhi Lama*
Manooch Saeedi*
Ray Marquez*
Brittney Henderson
Jordan Stubleski*
Zack Winkler*
Kate Ytell (High School)
Andy Gardner*
Bejan Saeedi
Dan April
Elnaz Soltani*
Tyler Dalby*
Jia Jun Long*
Stephanie Morphet
Becky Gullberg
Jordan Steel
Ben Fuller*
Meghan Lorenz*
Kristen Bullard-Feibelman
Milena Veselinovic
Jen Ludwig (High School Student)
Monpichar Srisa-Art
Aya Safira*
Zoe Johnson (High School Student)
Maliea Van*
Mick DeSarro (MS-B Alum)
Lara Perinet
Erin Calhoon (High School Student)
* Undergraduate Student
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