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Lab Members

Internships in the Mariani Lab

The Mariani Lab offers internship opportunities for undergraduate students who would like a contemporary medical research experience in a laboratory or computational setting. These unpaid internships require approximately 8 hrs/wk split over 2-3 days for one semester. The goal is to teach proficiency in a few fundamental molecular biology or applied computational biology skills. The laboratory experience will focus on the following scientific methods and protocols: DNA extraction, PCR, and gel electrophoresis. The computational experience focuses on a “Data Science” project, typically analysis of genome-wide expression data sets. All students must complete a basic chemical safety training course online before any bench work can begin. If interested, please contact

The following undergraduate students recently completed internships in the Mariani Lab.

Salman Syed

  • University of Rochester class of 2023, Biochemistry major.
  • Interned in the Mariani Lab spring 2020.
  • Developed basic molecular biology lab skills in DNA isolation, Polymerase Chain Reaction (PCR), and Gel Electrophoresis.
  • Visited the vivarium and spoke with lab members about Respiratory Syncytial Virus (RSV) and different chronic respiratory conditions.
  • Career aspirations include attending medical school and becoming a doctor.

Tongyi Fei

  • (Phoebe) University of Rochester class of 2020, double major Computational Biology and Japanese.
  • Interned in the Mariani lab summer 2018-spring 2020.
  • Learned several computation algorithms (sequence clustering, genome alignment, statistical analysis using RStudio, etc.). Molecular lab techniques included indirect ELISA, PCR, and gel electrophoresis.
  • Career aspirations include a masters or PhD in genomics or translational medicine.

Rebecca Fuchs

  • University of Rochester class of 2020, Computational Biology major. Interned in the Mariani lab summer 2017-spring 2018.
  • Learned and ran a genome wide association study and was involved in a gene expression analysis involving BPD patients.
  • Georgetown University class of 2020, master’s degree in Bioinformatics. Plan to
  • work on development of new therapeutics in the DC area.

Carlye Jones

  • Monroe Community College class of 2020, nursing major.
  • Interned in the Mariani lab in the summer of 2019.
  • Made chocolate agar plates to quantify bacterial serial dilutions using the drop-quantification method. Main project entailed using an air-liquid interface in vitro model of the human airway to study the apical-to-basal movement of bacteria across the lung epithelium.
  • I am a patient care technician at Rochester General Hospital. The plan is to work as a Registered Nurse in the neonatal intensive care unit.

Andrew Korts

  • University of Rochester class of 2023, Optical Engineering Major/ Computer Science Minor.
  • Interned in the Mariani lab summer 2019.
  • Basic lab etiquette and skills included DNA extraction, PCR, and gel electrophoresis.
  • Plan to attend graduate school for Optics. Aspire to designing optical systems for automated guided vehicles or satellite telescopes.

Jessica DiManno

  • University of Rochester class of 2020, Microbiology major. Interned in the Mariani lab spring 2019.
  • Developed molecular biology skills: PCR, gel electrophoresis and touched on tissue cultures.
  • Plan to obtain a master's degree in Microbiology and attend medical school.

Isabelle Brick

  • Dartmouth College class of 2020, Biology and Music major.
  • Interned in the Marianil lab winter 2019.
  • Learned genotyping, qPCR, sterile technique in tissue culture.
  • Plan to work in Boston as a clinical research coordinator studying asthma, and eventually enter a physician assistant program.

Andrew Soborowski

  • University of Rochester class of 2019, BS in Computational Biology.
  • Interned in the Mariani lab summer and fall of 2018.
  • Verified a method for mapping antigenic differences in different strains of influenza.
  • Current graduate student in Duke University's Computational Biology and Bioinformatics Ph.D. program.

Emma Tonetti

  • University of Rochester class of 2020, Biology major.
  • Interned in the Mariani lab summer of 2018.
  • Learned a variety of biological wet lab skills such as PCR, gel electrophoresis and cell culture.
  • Plan to enter the medical research field in immunology and eventually a Ph.D. program in infectious diseases and global health.

Sammie Ventimiglia

  • University of Buffalo class of 2019, BA Psychology and Italian.
  • Interned in the Mariani lab summer of 2017.
  • Performed qPCR looking at expression from e-cigarettes.
  • Works as a research assistant at FIU Center for Children and Families in Miami.

Michelle Benassai

  • University of Rochester class of 2017, double major Biology and Psychology.
  • Interned in the Mariani lab spring 2017.
  • Learned a variety of skills including DNA and RNA extraction, cDNA synthesis, PCR, and gel electrophoresis.
  • University of Rochester School of Medicine and Dentistry class of 2021. Will apply for OB/GYN residency after graduation.

Stacey Davis

  • SUNY Binghamton class of 2017, Integrative Neuroscience Major, Biological Anthropology minor.
  • Interned in the Mariani lab summer 2016.
  • Developed cell culture skills concerning the Effect of E-cigarettes on Small Airway Epithelial Cell Gene Expression.
  • Provides science education resources to high schools as a K-12 Account Specialist at JoVE, the Journal of Visualized Experiments.