Mikko Taipale, PhD

The Glorious Leader, capo di tutti capi

Education: University of Oulu (MSc), EMBL Heidelberg (PhD), Whitehead Institute (Postdoc)

Hometown: Helsinki, Finland

Other activities: Working from home

  • Doing things that PIs do (not experiments) 97% 97%
  • Doing experiments (ideally) 12% 12%
  • Doing experiments (actually) 1% 1%

Mandy Lam, PhD

Senior Research Associate, Lab Manager

Education: University of Toronto (BSc, PhD)

Hometown: Mississauga, ON

Other activities: Knitting, not ballet

  • Ensuring the lab doesn’t spontaneously implode/explode 75% 75%
  • Other lab managering 25% 25%
  • Chasing Mikko’s receipts 10% 10%

Chris Mogg, MSc


Education: Carleton University (MSc)

Hometown: Ottawa, ON

Other activities: 

  • Making sure things are where they are supposed to be 60% 60%
  • Fixing broken equipment 30% 30%
  • Chasing Mikko’s receipts 20% 20%

Hunsang Lee, PhD

Postdoctoral Fellow

Education: Simon Fraser University (BSc), Seoul National University (PhD)

Hometown: Seoul, Korea

Other activities: Moving apartments

  • Looking at extracellular interactions 70% 70%
  • Collecting toxins 20% 20%
  • CRISPRing everything that moves 20% 20%

Juline Poirson, PhD

Postdoctoral Fellow

Education: University of Strasbourg (MSc, PhD)

Hometown: Isle-Aubigny, France

Other activities: Climbing, running, drawing, taming cats

  • Discovering E3/DUB/target interactions 86% 86%
  • Inhibiting the proteasome 13% 13%
  • Making many, many, many stable cell lines 11% 11%

Ben Piette, PhD

Newly minted Doctor of Philosophy!

MSc: Université de Montréal (BSc, MSc)

Hometown: Berthierville, Quebec

Other activities: Watching movies

  • Characterizing the Hsp70/J protein/client network 63% 63%
  • Finding obscure papers on J proteins 27% 27%
  • Dealing with two supervisors (Taipale and Gingras) 20% 20%

Nader Alerasool, MSc

PhD Student

Education: University of Esfahan (BSc), University of Heidelberg (MSc)

Hometown: Esfahan, Iran

Other activities: Thinking about desert islands

  • Making proteins meet new partners… 64% 64%
  • …and studying the outcome of these encounters 23% 23%
  • Scheming to overthrow The Glorious Leader 23% 23%

Jessica Lacoste, BSc

PhD Student

Education: Dalhousie University (BSc)

Hometown: Thornhill, Ontario

Other activities: Taking pictures of Todd, running

  • Phenotyping pathogenic disease variants 74% 74%
  • Mastering high-content microscopy 25% 25%
  • Filling up hard drives 11% 11%

Dmitri Segal, BSc

PhD Student

Education: University of Western Ontario (BSc)

Hometown: Richmond Hill, Ontario

Other activities: Ice hockey 

  • Mapping the interactome of 14-3-3 proteins 85% 85%
  • Trying to find a better name for 14-3-3 proteins 20% 20%
  • Playing hockey with old men (Puckheads) 5% 5%

Akashdeep Dhillon, BSc

MSc Student

Education: University of Western Ontario (BSc)

Hometown: Mississauga, Ontario

Other activities: Student councils, volunteering with children as a student mentor, chasing after a puppy (Suzie) who enjoys chewing and hiding socks.

  • Destroying proteins… 90% 90%
  • …and trying to find out how that happens 15% 15%
  • Looking for Nader 5% 5%

Michael Ostrovski, BSc

MSc Student

Education: University of Tel Aviv (BSc, computer science), University of Toronto (BSc, molecular genetics)


Other activities:

  • Taming Cas12 70% 70%
  • Testing oh so many constructs 25% 25%
  • Splitting time between Moffat and Taipale labs 15% 15%

Thomas Zheng, BSc

MSc Student

Education: University of Toronto (BSc)

Hometown: Brampton, ON

Other activities: Contemplating the heat death of the universe.

  • Searching for the killer KRAB 55% 55%
  • Dealing with two supervisors (Hughes and Taipale)… 45% 45%
  • …while trying not to adopt their hairstyle 10% 10%