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crystal Igor Stagljar Laboratory
Department of Biochemistry
gold_bar Department of Molecular Genetics
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Farzaneh Aboualizadeh Iran flag

Farzaneh Aboualizadeh

Graduate Student

I graduated in biology from Razi University, Kermanshah, Iran and pursued my MSc in Biotechnology at Panjab University, India. In 2010 I started to work as a Research and Teaching Assistant and became a Laboratory Manager in 2012 at Shiraz University of Medical Sciences, Department of Paramedical Sciences-Shiraz, Iran.

Currently I am working on characterizing the interaction network of human disease associated ABC transporters using the MaMTH assay.

In my free time, I enjoy spending time outdoors, going to the gym, playing a traditional music instrument, as well as visiting historical places.

Indira AkulaCanada flagIndia flag

Indira Akula


I graduated with a Masters in Biology from Saint Joseph University, Philadelphia and have worked in research labs at the University of Pennsylvania, Mount Sinai Hospital and the Hospital for Sick Children. Currently in the Stagljar lab I am working on prey library construction and preparation of constructs for stable bait and reporter cell lines to be used for HTP MaMTH assays.

I like listening to music, watching basketball, reading biographies, doing yoga and enjoy baking.

Luka DrecunCanada flagMontenegro flag

Luka Drecun

Graduate Student

Upon completing the Immunology specialist program at the University of Toronto for my Undergraduate studies, I enrolled in the Department of Molecular Genetics for Graduate school. In the lab, I am working on identifying SH2 and PTB domain containing proteins that interact with specific RTK family proteins using the state of the art MaMTH assay.

I was an avid basketball player in high school; having played for the Godfather of Canadian basketball, coach Ro Russell, with Grassroots Canada. I like wilderness but appreciate urban life as well. I am also a proud supporter of FK Lovcen in the Montenegrin First League.

Ingrid GrozavuCanada flagRomania flag

Ingrid Grozavu

Graduate Student

I graduated with my BSc from the University of Toronto in Molecular Genetics and Neuroscience, where I completed my Honours Thesis in the Stagljar Lab. I was very excited by the research I was conducting in the lab, which is why I continued working here for graduate studies. My goal is to map the KRAS dynamic interactome (i.e. in WT vs oncogenic state) and use this data in combination with our drug screening platform to render novel therapeutic pathways for addressing KRAS mutations in pancreatic adenocarcinoma.

When I'm not in the lab, I divide my time between reading, watching the Raptors play, practicing my photography, and feeling guilty about not being in the lab. Aside from basketball, I'm also a huge soccer fan - go Barca!!

SangHyun Lim
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SangHyun Lim

Graduate Student

I completed my BMSc degree at the Western University with honours in biochemistry and cell biology. I studied direct interaction between adherens junction proteins in bacteria for my fourth-year project. As a graduate student in the Stagljar lab, I am currently investigating dynamic interactome of the human ABC transporter. I am working to determine the mechanisms of interactions as well as possible drug targets.

Outside of the lab, I like to play computer games, watch eSports, go snowboarding in winter and practice guitar.

Lucía López VázquezVenezuela flag

Lucía López Vázquez


I did my BSc in Biology in Venezuela and am soon graduating from the MSc program at the Institute of Medical Science at U of T. I joined the Stagljar lab to work on the implementation of MaMTH as a high-throughput screening technology.

In my spare time, I like to read fiction and historical novels, play video games and tabletop RPGs, work out, read about fitness and nutrition, go to rock concerts and worship my cats.


Anna LyakishevaCanada flagRussia flag

Anna Lyakisheva

Research Associate

I obtained my PhD in Biochemistry at University of Hannover, Germany and was research associate at the Institute of Gene Biology in Moscow, Russia, where my research focus was the biology of stem cells.

In the Stagljar Lab, I work on development of MaMTH technology into a high-throughput platform, and carry out large, unbiased screens on human integral membrane proteins to identify interacting partners and potential drug targets.


Shivanthy Pathmanathan
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Shivanthy Pathmanathan

Graduate Student

I recently graduated in Molecular Genetics and Biochemistry from the University of Toronto. I was a 4th year project student in the Stagljar Lab and have continued as a graduate student. I'm working on using the MaMTH assay to assemble MET tyrosine kinase receptor Interactome.

In my spare time, I like to listen to new music, catch up on favourite science fiction literature and spend time with family and friends.

Laura Riley
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Laura Riley

Lab Manager

I graduated with a PhD in microbiology from the University of Liverpool and completed a postdoctoral fellowship at the Hospital for Sick Children in Toronto. I am now the lab manager in the Stagljar lab, taking care of administrative duties and supporting the research carried out by the other lab members.

I like to be outdoors and active all year round, but I love winter in particular. I also enjoy playing the saxophone and learning Spanish.

Punit Saraon
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Punit Saraon

Postdoctoral Fellow

I completed my PhD studies at University of Toronto in August 2014. The main focus of my PhD was elucidating the molecular mechanisms of aggressive prostate cancer.

My main research interests are to understand the molecular basis of disease progression with a focus on altered signalling pathways. My current project aims to investigate inhibitors of EGFR using the newly developed MaMTH platform.

In my spare time, I like to play and watch a variety of sports including hockey, basketball, baseball, soccer and football.

Punit is the recipient of a three year CIHR Fellowship

Dr. Jamie SniderCanada flag

Dr. Jamie Snider

Research Associate

Jamie obtained his PhD in Biochemistry here at the University of Toronto. He joined the Stagljar lab in September 2007, and is currently working on the development and application of new proteomics technologies for use in protein-protein interaction screening and drug discovery.


Igor Stagljar, PhD
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Dr. Igor Stagljar


Igor coordinates zillions of projects in his group and enjoys interacting with his group members. He tries to create the opportunities for all of his group members to have cool, new projects.

In his spare time, Igor is doing a lot of sport (swimming, jogging, and basketball), makes his own red wine, and plays acoustic guitar.



The captain of the boat, the fisherman of fishes:

Igor Stagljar holding a big fish caught on holiday.


Attila SzaboCanada flagHungary flag

Attila Szabo

Project Student

I am a 4th year student double majoring in Molecular Genetics and Biochemistry. In the lab, I am focused on utilizing the MaMTH assay to discover the role of CRK, a family of adaptor proteins that signal for cell mobility, in non-small cell lung cancer.

Outside the lab, I enjoy catching up on global affairs and finance, spending time with friends and travelling



Priscilla TangCanada flag

Priscilla Tang


I graduated with a MSc from the University of Toronto in the Department of Cell and Systems Biology and the Collaborative Program in Developmental Biology. My thesis focused on elucidating the role of imprinted SFMBT2 in maintaining a trophoblast stem cell population. In the Stagljar lab, I am helping to develop MaMTH into a high-throughput screening system.

In my spare time, I enjoy outdoor activities such as camping and hiking, and playing computer games.

Adriana VučetićCroatia flag

Adriana Vučetić

Visiting Graduate Student

I study Molecular Biology at the University of Zagreb, Croatia. I was awarded a stipend from the Educational Foundation "Igor Stagljar" to come to the Stagljar lab and carry out my Master's thesis research for 7 months. I am currently working on validation of the MaMTH Drug Screen project. I am using the MaMTH assay to map and characterize interactomes of RTKs from the ErbB family.

In my spare time, I enjoy going the gym, jogging and exploring the city. I like to travel, meet new people and cultures.

Victoria WongCanada flag

Victoria Wong


A native of Toronto, I obtained my undergraduate degree at the University of Toronto from the Department of Medical Genetics and Microbiology. I am working on the human GPCR-membraneome project, and run and validate hundreds of MYTH screens.

When I'm not at work, I enjoy reading literature.


Dr. Zhong Yao
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Dr. Zhong Yao

Research Associate

Originally from China, I obtained my Ph.D. from the Weizmann Institute of Science in Israel. My primary research interest is to study signaling principles that govern different intracellular processes and how signal transduction is involved in various diseases. In Igor's lab, I am currently investigating the role of novel EGFR interactors in cancer. In addition, I am developing new methods for protein-protein interaction and CRISPR.

Aside from my research work, I like to spend my spare time with my son.

Stagljar lab and the former Croatian ambassador to Canada, His Excellency Veselko Grubisic, May 2015

Stagljar Lab
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Former Group Members


The Stagljar Lab alumni from
Toronto, Canada.

Mehrab Ali
Anthony Arnoldo
Caroline Benz
Frank Butty
Kevin Chen
Jennifer Chiang
Mathew Chuk
Jasna Curak
Dunja Damjanovic
Katelyn Darowski
Tobias Dietschy
Angelika Duffy
Dawn Edmonds
Steve George
Chris Graham
Dr. Bella Groisman
Asad Hanif
Ralph Imhof
Mathieu Jacob
Dr. Saranya (Jing) Kittanakom
Becky Koscik
Dr. Mandy Lam
Lianet Lopez
Raymond Mac
Carol Mazurek
Meg Mendoza
Dr. Javier Menendez
Mohammad Fahad Miah
Natasa Milutinovic
Shirrin Nassiri
Kathleen Nethery-Brokx
Dr. Uros Petrovic
Dr. Julia Petschnigg
Maanasa Raghavan
Monique Rehal
Paizeh Salek
Philipp Schmidt
Dr. Igor Shevelev
Kate Sokolina
Dr. Bernhard Suter
Marta Wierzbicka
Michael Yang
Analyn Yu


The Stagljar Lab alumni from
Zurich, Switzerland.

Lucija Beneti
Dr. Boris Bogdan
Dr. Lukas Bürkle
Martin Dinkel
Kim Engels
Dr. Mike Fetchko
Jacqueline Hort
Kavitha Iyer
Patrick Kuster
Lana Ljuma
Dr. Graziella Pedrazzi
Dr. Maja Petkovic
Dr. Nives Selak
Ingrid Stoffel-Studer
Dr. Safia Thaminy
Caroline Zbinde

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Last modified on 16 June, 2017