Lab Members


  Postdoctoral Fellows


 

Sharon Chiang, M.D., Ph.D., [email protected]

Sharon joined the lab in 2022. She received her M.D. from Baylor College of Medicine, her Ph.D. in Statistics from Rice University in the lab of Dr. Marina Vannuci, and completed her Neurology Residency at UCSF. During her Ph.D. work, Sharon specialized in development of Bayesian algorithms using spatial priors and variable selection to improve network estimation and measurement error models. Her post-Ph.D. research focused on graph topology underlying seizure-generating networks, development of state-space models to investigate cycling patterns in seizure risk, and investigations into the state-dependent nature of intracanial electrical stimulation for epilepsy. In the Frank lab, Sharon is pursuing her interest in using rodent experimental models of epilepsy to understand cellular circuit mechanisms underlying memory dysfunction in epilepsy.


Michael Coulter, M.D., Ph.D., [email protected]

Michael joined the lab in 2018. He received his M.D. / Ph.D. from Harvard Medical School in the lab of Dr. Chris Walsh. His thesis focused on the genetic and molecular mechanisms of neurodevelopmental disorders including autism, microencephaly, and neurodegenerative disorders including Cockayne syndrome and xeroderma pigmentosum. In the Frank lab, Michael is examining mechanisms of memory retrieval using a novel neurofeedback paradigm. He is also investigating how learning is affected by loss of SCN2A, a gene highly associated with autism spectrum disorder.


 

Kyu Hyun Lee, Ph.D., [email protected]

Kyu joined the lab in 2020. He received his Ph.D. from CalTech in the lab of Dr. Markus Meister where he investigated neural computations in the superior colliculus, a midbrain region important for processing visual stimuli related to approaching aerial threat. He also developed a new method to multiplex signals in high-density silicon neural probes by controlling switches to pool multiple electrodes. In the Frank lab, Kyu has helped develop Spyglass, a software framework for reproducible and shareable neuroscience research, is working on improving neural probe technology, and is exploring non-local representations between the hippocampus and the visual system. 


Josue Regalado, Ph.D., [email protected]

Josue joined the lab in 2023. He received his Ph.D. from Rockefeller University in the lab of Dr. Priya Rajasethupathy. His thesis work identified a thalamo-cortical circuit that gates memory consolidation and a frontal cortical circuit to drive motivation during learning. Josue is now working jointly in the Frank and Scanziani labs to investigate how top-down inputs influences visual processing.


Xulu Sun, Ph.D., [email protected]

Xulu joined the lab in 2021. She completed her PhD work in the lab of Dr. Krishna Shenoy at Stanford University. Her thesis focused on the cortical neural population dynamics underlying flexible movement control and motor learning. In the Frank Lab, Xulu is investigating the neural basis for memory- and value-guided foraging decisions in hippocampal and cortical areas.


Shih-Yi Tseng, M.D, Ph.D., [email protected]

Shih-Yi joined the lab in 2023. She received her M.D. from National Tawain University and her Ph.D. from Harvard University in the lab of Dr. Christopher D. Harvey. Her thesis focused on the structures of neural representations during flexible navigation decisions in mice. In the Frank lab, Shih-Yi will investigate the neural representations of knowledge transfer to new situations, including how these neural representations emerge over the course of learning and the role played by hippocampal-cortical interactions in this process.


  Graduate Students


Alison Comrie, [email protected]

Alison is in the Neuroscience Graduate Program and joined the lab in 2018. She is interested in how the brain supports adaptive decision making based on prior experience in a dynamic world. To study this, she is exploring hippocampal and cortical representations in rats as they make memory- and value-guided foraging decisions.


Shijie Gu, [email protected]

Shijie is in the joint UCSF/UC Berkeley Bioengineering Graduate Program and joined the lab in 2020. He is interested in latent-state neural coding underlying memory, real-time neural signal processing, and feedback systems. Outside of the lab, he studies geometry, topology, and category theory. He also writes alternative rock songs.


Denisse Morales-Rodriguez, [email protected]

Denisse is in the UCSF MD-PhD program and her graduate work is in the joint UCSF/UC Berkeley Bioengineering Graduate Program. Denisse joined the lab in 2024.


 

Rhino Nevers, [email protected]

Rhino is in the Neuroscience Graduate Program.


Donghoon Shin, [email protected]

Donghoon is in the joint UCSF/UC Berkeley Bioengineering Graduate Program and joined the lab in 2023. He recieved an M.S. in Electrical and Computer Engineering from Georgia Tech. He is interested in understanding the neural dynamics of internally generated representation and how it guides behavior.


  Staff


 

Vanessa Bender, Ph.D., Scientific Project Manager, [email protected]

Vanessa joined the lab in 2023. She received her Ph.D. from UC San Diego in the lab of Dr. Daniel Feldman. Her thesis focused on spike timing dependent plasticity in the rodent somatosensory cortex. Her postdoctoral work at OHSU in the lab of Dr. Craig Jahr focused on presynaptic mechanisms of plasticity at parallel fiber synapses in cerebellum. For the last 9 years, Vanessa has worked as a consultant for editing and writing scientific documents.


Samuel Bray, Ph.D., Software Engineer, [email protected]

Sam joined the lab in 2023.


Chris Brozdowski, Ph.D., Software Engineer, [email protected]

Chris joined the lab in 2023. Chris joined the lab in 2023. He received his Ph.D. from SDSU / UCSD while working with Dr. Karen Emmorey. His research included human fMRI, motion capture and behavioral data across studies related to sign language comprehension, spatial cognition, and literacy development. He has a decade of experience in data management, analytics, visualization, and dynamically acquiring project-relevant skills. His approach to software architecture prioritizes accessibility and stability of the data platform across research projects, at the intersection of open-source and open-science. In the Frank lab, Chris manages the SQL database and Spyglass, the Python interface.


Eric Denovellis, Ph.D., Research Scientist, [email protected]

Eric joined the lab in 2019. He received his Ph.D. in computational neuroscience at Boston University in the lab of Drs. Daniel H. Bullock and Earl K. Miller. There, he developed computational tools and models to understand how prefrontal cortex supports the underlying neural computations necessary to switch between contexts. During his postdoctoral work with Dr. Uri T. Eden, Eric developed marked point process switching state space models. In the Frank lab, Eric extends and applies these models to develop scalable, interpretable algorithms and tools to decode, categorize, and visualize neural representations - particularly in the hippocampus.


Mushu Yusifova, Laboratory Manager, [email protected]

Mushu joined the lab in 2023.


  Research Associates


Emrey Broyles, [email protected]

Emrey joined the lab in 2022 after receiving a B.S. in Neuroscience and Mathematics from Tulane University. She is working with Dr. Sharon Chiang to understand cellular circuit mechanisms underlying memory dysfunction in a rodent experimental model of epilepsy.


 

Chenyan Liu, [email protected]

Chenyan joined the lab in 2022. She is working with Shijie Gu to explore latent state coding during reward-based behavior in rodents. 


 

Riona Swenson, [email protected]

Riona joined the lab in 2023. They are working with Dr. Michael Coulter to explore how learning is affected by loss of SCN2A, a gene highly associated with autism spectrum disorder.


 

Lulu Tong, [email protected]

Lulu joined the lab in 2023. She is working with Dr. Xulu Sun to investigate the neural mechanisms underlying memory-and value-guided foraging decisions in hippocampal and cortical areas. 


  Alumni


Former Postdoctoral Fellows

 

Abilasha Joshi, Ph.D.

Abilasha was a postdoctoral fellow in the lab from 2018-2023. 

Ji Hyun Bak, Ph.D.

Ji was a postdoctoral fellow in the lab from 2021-2022.  She is currently a Senior Data Scientist at Delfi  Diagnostics.

Anna Gillespie, Ph.D.

Anna was a postdoctoral fellow in the lab from 2015-2022. She is currently an assistant professor at the University of Washington, School of Medicine. Gillespie Lab Website

David Kastner, M.D., Ph.D.

David was a postdoctoral fellow in the lab from 2016-2022. He is currently an adjunct instructor at UCSF.

Jai Yu, Ph.D.

Jai was a postdoctoral fellow in the lab from 2011-2020. He is currently an assistant professor at the University of Chicago. Yu Lab website

Gideon Rothschild, Ph.D.

Gideon was a postdoctoral fellow in the lab from 2011-2017. He is currently an Assistant Professor of Psychology at the University of Michigan. Rothschild Lab Website

Emily B. Anderson, Ph.D.

Emily was a postdoctoral fellow in the lab from 2012-2017.

Shantanu Jadhav, Ph.D.

Shantanu was a postdoctoral fellow in the lab from 2011-2014. He is currently an Associate Professor of Psychology at Brandeis University. Jadhav Lab Website

Caleb Kemere, Ph.D.

Caleb was a postdoctoral fellow in the lab from 2005-2011. He is currently an Associate Professor at Rice University. Kemere Lab Website 

Sen Cheng, Ph.D.

Sen was a postdoctoral fellow in the lab from 2005-2009. He is currently an Associate Professor at Ruhr University in Bochum, Germany. Cheng Lab Website

Yuri Dagaghian, Ph.D.

Yuri was a postdoctoral fellow in the lab from 2003-2009. He is currently an Associate Professor of Neurology at McGovern Medical School. Dagaghian Lab Website

 

 


Former Research Scientists

 

Thomas Davidson, Ph.D.

Tom was a Research Scientist in the lab from 2015-2019. He is currently a Research Science Manager at Reality Labs.

Andrew Tritt

Andrew was a Systems Analyst in the lab from 2017-20YY. He is currently a Data Engineer at Lawrence Berkeley National Lab.

P. Walter German, Ph.D.

Walter was a Data Science Engineer in the lab from 2010-2015. He is currently a Data Scientist at Digital Health.

 

Phil Adenekan

Phil was a Research & Development Engineer in the lab from 2018-2024. He is currently a graduate student.