Principal Investigator (P.I.)

I was born and raised in a small village surrounded by the Swiss alps in the heart of continental Europe. I obtained my Ph.D. in Microbiology & Systems biology from the University of Basel, Switzerland in 2010.  After a 2-year stint as asset and liability manager for a Swiss consulting company, I joined the lab of Hidde Ploegh at Whitehead Institute for Biomedical Research / MIT as a postdoctoral fellow. In late 2016, I moved with the Ploegh lab to Boston Children's Hospital / Harvard Medical School to finish up my postdoctoral work. In July 2018, I joined the Medical School at University of Michigan. Ever since, I have been busy setting up my lab.

In my 'free time', I enjoy hanging out with my family, exercising, cooking & baking.

Billy Giblin, Ph.D.

Research Investigator

I was born and raised in the smallest state of Rhode Island.  I didn’t travel very far north when I attended Boston College in Chestnut Hill, MA.  After graduating with a Bachelors of Science in Chemistry, I moved to Ann Arbor, MI, working as a research technician at the University of Michigan.  Shortly thereafter, I decided to remain at UM to pursue a Ph.D. in the Department of Human Genetics. I graduated in 2017 and am currently a Research Investigator in the Department of Molecular and Integrative Physiology.

Outside of the lab I enjoy running, nature documentaries, Ann Arbor’s vibrant restaurant scene, and watching football and basketball (Go Blue!)

Bhaskar Chatterjee, Ph.D.

Postdoctoral Fellow

I was born and raised in West Bengal, India. I majored as a B.Tech in Biotechnology at the West Bengal University of Technology, Kolkata, West Bengal, India, where I graduated in 2011. I then joined the  Ph.D. program at the Kusuma School of Biological Sciences at the Indian Institute of Technology, Delhi, India. I completed my Ph.D. in 2018 and then joined the Truttmann lab as a postdoc in January 2019.

My favorite pastimes are reading, singing songs, attending concerts and binge-watching TV shows and watching the live telecast of Cricket and Soccer matches.

Benedict Abdon, Ph.D.

Postdoctoral Fellow

I am originally from a small city in the Bay Area (Oakley, California) and attended San Francisco State University where I majored in Cell and Molecular Biology. After working as a pathology assistant at California Pacific Medical Center in San Francisco for a few years (and not liking it), I transitioned into academic research for a M.S. in Physiology and Behavior at SFSU. I then moved to Ann Arbor to pursue my doctorate at the University of Michigan, where I received my PhD in Molecular and Integrative Physiology in 2023.


Currently, all my free time has been dedicated to my daughter, Phoebe (3 months old at the time this was written). Outside of Phoebe, I enjoy playing and watching soccer, being outdoors, amateur photography, and sleeping.

Nicholas Urban

Graduate student (Molecular & Integrative Physiology)

I grew up in the just southwest of Chicago in a town called Lemont, Illinois. I was an NCAA student-athlete at Grand Valley State University in Grand Rapids, Michigan, where I majored in Biomedical Science with a minor in Chemistry and graduated in 2019. I suppose my decision to attend graduate school at the University of Michigan must make me an honorary Michigander! I am a first year graduate student and plan on pursuing my PhD in Molecular & Integrative Physiology. 

In my free time I enjoy playing sports with friends, listening to vinyl records, playing video games, and exploring nature. 

Shannon Lacy

Graduate student (Cellular & Molecular Biology)

I grew up in San Mateo, California (Bay Area) and then switched coasts to attend Colgate University in upstate New York where I majored in Molecular Biology and minored in German. After graduating in 2016, I worked at the National Institutes of Health for two years as a post-bac and developed my research interests in proteostasis-related diseases. I am now a third year graduate student and am pursuing my PhD in Cellular and Molecular Biology. When not in lab, I enjoy running, drinking too much coffee, and climbing!

Kate M. Van Pelt

Graduate student (Cellular & Molecular Biology)

I was born in Chicago, IL and grew up in Grosse Pointe Farms, MI. I then headed to Ohio to attend Oberlin College, where I developed research interests in neurodegeneration and protein aggregation. I graduated in May 2018 with a B.A. in Neuroscience and minors in Chemistry and Philosophy. After graduation, I returned to the "mitten"  to pursue my doctoral degree here at Michigan. I am currently a 5th year PhD Candidate in the Cellular and Molecular Biology Program (CMB). 

Outside of the lab, I enjoy rock climbing, skiing, and knitting.

Mirella A. Hernández-Lima

Graduate student (Neuroscience)

 I am a graduate student in the Neuroscience Graduate Program. I earned my Bachelor of Arts in Biopsychology at California State University San Bernardino (CSUSB). My goal is to advance the field of sensory neuroscience through innovative research while fostering an inclusive environment that empowers emerging scientists from diverse backgrounds.

Corey Stewart

Graduate student (Neuroscience)

I was born and raised in a very small Appalachian town in Virginia called Pennington Gap. I hopped just across the VA/TN state line to do my Bachelor’s in General Biology (with a minor in programming) at East Tennessee State University. After graduating in 2019, I worked as an IT specialist and computer instructor at The Crumley House Brain Injury Rehabilitation Center in Limestone, TN. I moved to Ann Arbor in 2021 to complete a Master’s in Molecular, Cellular, and Developmental Biology. After finishing that in 2023, I decided to stay in Ann Arbor to join the Neuroscience Graduate Program to pursue my PhD. 

In my free time, I enjoy powerlifting as a part of the University of Michigan Powerlifting Club, playing video games, going to metal concerts, watching football, and dressing up as a Viking for Renaissance Faires.

Eric Primack

Graduate student (Molecular & Integrative Physiology)

 I was born and raised in Thousand Oaks, California, and am a recent graduate from the University of Arizona. At the U of A, I obtained a B.S. in Biochemistry with a minor in Mathematics. Currently, I am a pre-candidate in the Molecular and Integrative Physiology Ph.D. program where I get to do what I love: analyze and learn about the molecular mechanisms of the human body. I just joined the Truttmann lab and I am eager to learn and conduct novel research. 

My hobbies include playing guitar, learning new songs and writing some of my own; travelling, learning and experiencing all the world has to offer; and playing board games and video games with friends.

Rebecca Jean

Research Technician

I I am from Midland, Michigan and have been living in Ann Arbor to be near the University of Michigan, where I recently graduated from with my B.S. in Biochemistry. I will be pursuing a PhD next fall, and I am excited to be developing my interests in age-related diseases in the Truttman Lab as a research assistant. In my free time, I enjoy baking, being outside, and finding creative outlets.

Sarah Tabler

Research Technician

I grew up in Midland, Michigan and graduated from Michigan State University in 2020 with a major in Genomics and Molecular Genetics and a minor in Anthropology. In 2021, I joined the Truttmann lab as a research assistant. In my free time, I enjoy knitting, drinking tea, and meeting other people’s dogs.

Samuel Yang

Undergraduate Researcher

I grew up in Grand Rapids, Michigan, and moved to Ann Arbor, Michigan. I am an undergraduate student majoring in microbiology, hoping to work as a dentist. I am excited to work in this lab as I have always wanted more hands-on experience in a laboratory. Outside of the Laboratory, I enjoy watching the English premier league and reading cooking journals. 

Mammer Almalahi

Graduate (master) student in Cancer Chemical Biology

I grew up in Fort Wayne, Indiana and graduated from Purdue University in 2023 with a B.S. in Biochemistry. I moved to Ann Arbor to pursue my Masters in Cancer Chemical Biology and plan to pursue my PhD here at Umich next fall. I joined the Truttmann lab to develop my interests in neurodegenerative diseases and their underlying causes. Outside of lab, I enjoy exploring Ann Arbor and northern Michigan (a recent hobby), cooking, and trying out new restaurants. 

Sarah Wallace

Undergraduate Researcher

I was born in Summit, NJ and spent the first half of my childhood there before moving to a suburb of Atlanta, GA. I’m currently an undergraduate student majoring in Neuroscience and minoring in Community Action and Social Change(CASC) and French. I’m extremely grateful to have the opportunity to be a part of the Truttmann lab and learn from such a brilliant group of individuals. Outside of the lab, I enjoy doing improv comedy, thrifting, and singing karaoke. 

Bruno Zunzunegui

Undergraduate Researcher

I grew up in Mexico, right on the border with the US. I am an undergraduate student pursuing a major in BCN with a pre-med track. I am very excited to be part of the laboratory and to gain a sense of what my future career will be like. Outside the laboratory, I enjoy hanging out with my friends, listening to music, and playing golf.

Truttmann lab, September 2022

Lab Alumni


Margaret Macknick-Champion 

Zachary Mattiola 


Corey M Porter

Graduate students

Joshua Rose

Shuqi Zhao

Undergraduate students

Indeya Lawrence

Shewar Ibadat 

Alex Borian

Greeshma Pandya

Han Kim

Sooin Choi

Mariah Muraski

Anna Gelifus

Yasmeen Berry

Brian Seo

Isabella Plati

Emre Hayir

Samantha Turowski

Shanta Pai

Autumn Allemon