Current TL1 Trainees

Current TL1 Trainees

  • Dorothea Morris

    Mentor: Dr. Roberto P. Garofalo
    Clinical Co-Mentor: Dr. Antonella Casola

    Dorothea Morris obtained her Master of Science in Biology from Tarleton State University where she studied the antiviral and immunomodulatory effects of silver nanoparticles against respiratory syncytial virus (RSV). Following graduation, she worked as a research associate at the University of Texas Medical Branch (UTMB) where she demonstrated the age-dependent transfer of exosomal microRNA between the retinal pigment epithelial layer and retinal microglia as well as characterizing how this activity contributed to chronic inflammation driving macular degeneration. She is currently a dual-degree graduate student in the Microbiology & Immunology Ph.D. program and the Master of Public Health- Epidemiology track. Her graduate studies focus on immunomodulatory therapy development for respiratory viral infections and the epidemiology of viral co-infections in children. She is also involved in community outreach programs promoting the learning of public health topics in school-aged children. She loves hanging out with her cats, volunteering at the local food bank, and picking up trash off the Galveston beaches. 

    2022: IHII Data Acquisition Pilot Grant
    2022: GCC Immunology Scholar Subcommittee Member
    2021: Edith and Robert Zinn Presidential Scholarship
    2021: Mardelle Susman Scientific Writing Award
    2020-Present: NIH/NCATS TL1 Institutional Training Core (TL1TR001440) “UTMB Clinical and Translational Science Award”
    2020: Ann and John Hamilton Endowed Scholarship
    2019: Mikiten Graduate Research Symposium Travel Award

  • Kseniya Masterova
    TL1 Trainee Kseniya Masterova

    Mentor: Dr. Elena Volpi
    Co-Mentor: Dr. Blake Rasmussen

    Kseniya Masterova graduated from Loyola University Chicago in 2016 with Bachelor of Science degrees in Physics, Biology, and Biophysics and a minor in Mathematics. During her undergraduate education she interned with NASA Johnson Space Center with the Space Medicine Division on a project with the Lifetime Surveillance of Astronaut Health group. Following graduation, she spent a year working as a Research Assistant in the Space Medicine Innovations Lab at Dartmouth College studying the use of portable autorefractors to detect space flight-associated neuro-ocular syndrome vision changes. Currently, she is in the M.D./Ph.D. dual degree program in the Aerospace Medicine Track in the School of Medicine and in the Rehabilitation Sciences Ph.D. program. Her dissertation work focuses on the effects of short duration bed rest on arterial structure and function in older adults with type 2 diabetes. 

    2022: NIH/NCATS TL1 Institutional Training Core (TL1TR001440) “UTMB Clinical and Translational Science Award”
    2022: Samuel N. Kolmen, PhD and Barbara Kass Kolmen, MD Travel Scholarship, UTMB
    2022: Sealy Center for Aging Scholarship, UTMB
    2021: Student Excellence in Research Award, UTMB Sealy Center on Aging
    2020: Arthur V. Simmang Scholarship, UTMB
    2020: Jeffrey R. Davis Endowed Scholarship, Aerospace Medicine Association
    2019: Arthur V. Simmang Scholarship, UTMB
    2019: Eva Yznaga Seger MD Presidential Scholarship, UTMB
    2019: Texas Space Grant Consortium Graduate Fellowship
    2018: Aerospace Medicine Association Fellows Scholarship
    2017: Jeffrey R. Davis Space Medicine Scholarship, Space Medicine Association

  • Victoria Morris
    HPTM Graduate Student
    Mentor: Dr. Andrew Routh

    Victoria (Tori) Morris came to us from Wisconsin after working in both the research and clinical settings. Her internship at the University of Georgia Center for Applied Genetic Technologies focused on genetic components of peanut plants' resistance to nematodes. At Waukesha Memorial Hospital, she worked as a Clinical Laboratory Assistant for the Microbiology department. After graduating from Maranatha Baptist University magna cum laude with a B.S. in Biochemistry, she joined HPTM. She is currently a graduate student researching arboviruses in the Routh lab. Her work focuses on better methods of tracking vector-borne diseases using current collection and surveillance techniques. Tracking viral evolution in vector species allows public health surveillance foreknowledge of possible outbreak strains and provides basic virologists with the most up-to-date sequences to design therapeutics against.

    2021 - NIH/NCATS TL1 Institutional Training Core (TL1TR001440) “UTMB Clinical and Translational Science Award”
    2020 - present - Secretary, Society for Translational Research 
    2021- present - Graduate Student Organization Officer
  • Timothy Wanninger

    Mentor: Dr. Slobodan Paessler 
    Mentor: Dr. Heather Stevenson-Lerner 

    Timothy Wanninger graduated from Regis University with Bachelor of Science degrees in Biology and Biochemistry. Following graduation, he worked as a post-baccalaureate research fellow in the Mascola Lab at the NIH Vaccine Research Center, where he focused on HIV vaccine development. At UTMB, Timothy is an MD/PhD student and member of the Paessler and Stevenson-Lerner labs. His research focuses on the immune response to Ebola virus and other hemorrhagic fever viruses, with an emphasis on macrophages in the liver. He is also involved with the Biocontainment Care Unit and Special Pathogens Excellence in Clinical Treatment, Readiness, and Education (SPECTRE) Program at UTMB.

    2021 - Andrew A. Lackner Early-Stage Investigator Award. 38th Annual Symposium on Nonhuman Primate Models for AIDS
    2021 - Edward S. Reynolds Award. Pathology Department Trainee Research Day, UTMB
    2021 - NIH/NCATS TL1 Institutional Training Core (TL1TR001440) “UTMB Clinical and Translational Science Award”
    2021 - Samuel Baron, MD Research Scholarship, UTMB
    2019 - Arthur and Dorothy Barrett Scholarship Fund, UTMB
    2019 - Blocker Scholar Fellowship in Biomedical Sciences, UTMB

HPTM and TL1 students in leadership workshop

Leadership workshop with TL1 and HPTM students

Former TL1 Trainees

Former TL1 Trainees

  • Carl Grim, PhD
  • Catherine Sampson, PhD
  • Jennifer Perone, MD
  • Maria Ansar, MD, PhD
  • Rachel Deer, PhD
  • Shinji Strain, MD, PhD
  • Sierra Miller
  • Ted Graber, PhD