Paul C. Boutros, PhD, MBA
Paul Boutros, PhD, MBA, is Director of Cancer Data Science for the UCLA Jonsson Comprehensive Cancer Center, Associate Director of Cancer Informatics at the Institute for Precision Health, Professor of Human Genetics and a secondary appointment in Urology, as well as an integral member of the Institute of Urologic Oncology and the Eli and Edythe Broad Center for Regenerative Medicine and Stem Cell Research at UCLA. Dr. Boutros earned his B.Sc. degree from the University of Waterloo in Chemistry in 2004, and his Ph.D. degree from the University of Toronto, Canada, in Medical Biophysics in 2008. At Toronto, he also earned an executive M.B.A. from the Rothman School of Management. In 2008, Boutros started his independent research career at the Ontario Institute for Cancer Research first as a fellow (2008–2010) and then as principal investigator (2010–2018). He moved to California to join the UCLA faculty in 2018.
Raag is an MD-PhD student at the UCLA-Caltech Medical Scientist Training Program. He received his BA in Biology from Columbia University where he researched transcription factor binding. His primary research focus is in leveraging large multi-omic datasets to improve Prostate cancer outcomes.
Jaron Arbet, PhD
Dr. Arbet completed his PhD in Biostatistics at the University of Minnesota. Prior to joining the Boutros Lab in 2022, Jaron worked as a biostatistician in the medical device industry, and the University of Colorado Department of Biostatistics & Informatics, where he helped researchers design studies and analyze data for manuscript publications. Jaron’s research interests include cancer genomics, multi-omics data integration, machine learning, predictive modeling, and feature selection.
Sarah Al-Hiyari, PhD
Dr. Al-Hiyari completed her Ph.D. at the University of California, Los Angeles in 2017 and she is currently pursuing an MBA degree at UCLA Anderson. Her previous research interests included understanding the genetic underpinnings of periodontal disease.
Caroline Y. Chen, MD
Hematology Oncology Fellow
Dr. Chen completed her medical degree at the University of Miami Miller School of Medicine, her internal medicine residency at UCLA, and is currently a hematology/oncology fellow at UCLA. She is interested in how informatics can be utilized to improve clinical decision making, treatment options, and ultimately patient outcomes.
Staff Research Associate
Rachel joined the Boutros Lab after graduating from UCLA in 2022 where she majored in Computational and Systems Biology.
Jack moved to LA after graduating from Michigan State University. He is interested in Bioinformatics and is excited to discover all that the university and the city have to offer.
Faizal graduated with a BTech in Biotechnology from BSAR Crescent Institute of Science and Technology, India. During this program he interned at healthcare industries, MedGenome Labs and Twin Health where he developed interest toward health data science. Prior to joining the Boutros Lab in 2022, he worked as a Sr. Bioinformatics Analyst at MedGenome Labs – India, where he developed expertise in human NGS data analysis with focus on CNV/SV calling and variant prioritization. Faizal is presently driving the development of SV and CNA pipelines in the Boutros Lab for germline and somatic analyses.
Stefan Eng, Master's in Mathematical Statistics
Stefan did his undergrad in computer science & mathematics at Cal State Northridge. He has worked in a variety of industries such as at Jet Propulsion Laboratory, at CRESST/UCLA, and an internship at Novartis. He has his master’s degree in mathematical statistics from Gothenburg University, Sweden. In his free time he enjoys running, rock climbing, hiking and camping.
Sorel Tanya Fitz-Gibbon, PhD
Sorel has been at UCLA since 1989, earning her B.Sc. degree in Molecular, Cellular and Developmental Biology in 1992, and her Ph.D. degree in Microbiology and Molecular Genetics in 1998. Since then, she has worked as a bioinformatician in fields as diverse as extremophile microbial genomes, whole genome tree of life phylogenies, environmental metagenomes, human microbiomes, algal genetics and oak tree ecological genomics. As an aside, from 2005-2009 she taught the UCLA Earth and Space Science’s ‘Dinosaurs and their relatives’ class. She joined the Boutros lab in the Jonsson Comprehensive Cancer Center in 2022.
Tsumugi graduated from UCSC and worked at a biotech start-up in the Bay Area before coming to UCLA. She is currently a bioinformatician working as part of Dr. Paul Boutros's lab in the Jonsson Comprehensive Cancer Center.
Jenna graduated from UC Davis in 2017 with a bachelor's degree in genetics and genomics and a minor in computer science. She is now a PhD student in the Molecular Biology Interdepartmental Doctoral Program at UCLA and is co-mentored by Dr. Andrew Goldstein. She is interested in understanding how metabolic vulnerabilities can be targeted to treat aggressive prostate cancers.
Alfredo Enrique Gonzalez, BS
Alfredo Enrique is a doctoral student and part of the UCLA Graduate Programs in Bioscience. Originally from Central America, he immigrated to the U.S. and received his undergraduate degree from Providence College. Following research stints at Harvard and the Broad Institute, in 2020 he joined the laboratory of Paul Boutros as a PhD student. His research interests primarily focus on the development of personalized therapies for cancer, sarcoma, childhood associated cancers, and predictive modeling of patient outcomes.
Roni Haas, PhD
Roni completed her Ph.D. in the field of yeast quantitative genetics at the Technion - Israel Institute of Technology. Her doctoral studies were followed by short postdoctoral research at the Technion, centered around RNA bioinformatics, and particularly Adenosine to Inosine RNA editing and its role in regulating RNA abundance. Currently, Roni is a postdoctoral scholar in the Boutros laboratory. Her primary research interest is the germline activity of cancer hallmark pathways and its relation to tumor evolution and lethality.
Jee Yun Han, MS
Jee Yun is a graduate student in the Gene Regulation, Epigenomics and Transcriptomics (GREaT) home area of Molecular Biology Interdepartmental Program (MBIDP) at UCLA. She received B.S. and M.S. in the Department of Biotechnology at Korea University. During M.S. student, she studied on small non-coding RNA. After her M.S., she focused on Cancer Biology and Epigenomics at Seoul National University and UCSD, respectively, as a research associate. Her research interest is now "Gene regulation in Cancer".
Aaron Kenneth Holmes
Aaron has worked as a software engineer for 15 years in the private sector in industries as varied as philanthropy, network security, enterprise education, and entertainment. Most recently he worked as a Principal Engineer leading internal organizations in cloud migrations. Aaron is thrilled and excited to learn and be a part of cancer research and doing good for humanity. Outside of a self-driven passion for software and computing, his hobbies and interests include electrical engineering, gardening, the outdoors, motorcycles, helicopter piloting, ice skating, science fiction, video games, dogs, and so much more. Aaron was born and raised in southern California, and has lived as far north as Michigan where he took a liking to freezing weather.
Rupert Hugh-White, PhD
Rupert studied his B.Sc. in Biological Sciences at the University of Brighton, UK, before completing an M.Sc. in Bioinformatics at the University of Glasgow. He then studied for a Ph.D. at King's College London with a focus on understanding alternative pre-mRNA splicing through analysis of RNA-sequencing datasets. Rupert's current work is concerned with profiling the molecular biology of prostate cancer. In particular, he is focused on understanding the flow of information between alternative splicing and other stages of the gene expression pathway, and how this is influenced by the mutations which drive prostate cancer.
Dan is a software engineer who completed an undergraduate degree in Electronic Production and Design from Berklee College of Music in 2016, and joined the Boutros Lab in 2021. His career interest is in applying computer science and data science to find new solutions to important problems.
Lydia Y. Liu
Lydia is a Ph.D. student at the University of Toronto. Her primary research interest is tumour heterogeneity.
Emma Kaitlyn Longshore, MS
Emma completed her undergraduate studies at the University of Colorado Boulder and her Master’s in Biomedical Engineering with special focus in Bioinformatics at New York University. Her primary clinical and research focuses are oncology informatics and machine learning algorithms for smarter patient treatment and data accessibility.
Assistant to the Director
Amanda received her AA in Child Development in 2015. However, she took interest in Healthcare Administration in 2016 when she started at Providence St. John’s. She started working with UCLA in Cardiology & Internal Medicine in 2017. In 2019 she started working with the UCLA Internal Medicine Residency Program, where she provided support for the Program Director, Chief Residents, and visiting rotating Residents. Her interests peaked, which has led her to the JCCC! Her favorite role and title that she holds is ‘Mom.’
Beth Neilsen, MD, PhD
Radiation Oncology Resident
Dr. Beth Neilsen received her Bachelor’s degree in computer science from the Jeffrey Raikes School of Computer Science and Management within the University of Nebraska-Lincoln. She completed her MD/PhD training at the University of Nebraska Medical Center. Her PhD research utilized bioinformatic approaches to evaluate and identify novel therapeutic targets in Ras-mutated cancers from a genome-wide siRNA screen, which was supported by an NIH/NCI F30 grant. Dr. Neilsen completed a year of preliminary training in Internal Medicine at the University of Nebraska Medical Center before starting her radiation oncology residency at the University of California, Los Angeles. She was selected to complete the ABR Holman Research Pathway and joined the Boutros laboratory as a postdoctoral scholar. Her research interests include cancer heterogeneity and cancer evolution particularly in response to radiation treatment.
Jieun is a Bioinformatics Ph.D student at UCLA. She graduated from the University of Hong Kong with a major in Biochemistry and a minor in computer science. She is interested in researching cancer and improving precision medicine through bioinformatics.
Yash Patel, MSc
Yash holds a B.Sc. in Biology and Computer Science from McGill University and a M.Sc. in Computer Science studying RNA structural characteristics important for determining interactions with RNA-binding proteins. He is currently working on developing pipelines for processing and analyzing NGS data.
Zhuyu Qiu, MSc
Zhuyu holds a B.Sc. in Biological Sciences from China Agricultural University and an M.Sc. of Biostatistics from Columbia University. Her current work focuses on a large-scale prostate cancer-specific proteomics project and will perform machine-learning analyses on the data.
Julie graduated from UCLA with a degree in Sociology. She started her career in UCLA in 2012 and has held positions in Pediatrics, the Cardiac Arrhythmia Center, and Geffen Academy at UCLA. In 2016, Julie completed her Master’s degree in Public Administration.
John M Sahrmann
John spent most of his life living and working in the Midwest. He most recently worked with large administrative health care data sets at the Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis and joined the Boutros lab at the UCLA Jonsson Comprehensive Cancer Center to work on even larger -omics data sets. His specialties include survival analysis and statistical programming.
Mao Tian, PhD
Mao completed her B. Sc in biotechnology at the Sichuan University, China. She got her Ph.D. in medical biology at the University of Southern California, studying the molecular mechanism of an oncogenic virus, Kaposi's Sarcoma Herpesvirus. She holds a sprightly interest in translational science, specifically cancer biomarker and drug target discovery. Currently, Mao is a junior bioinformatician in the Boutros laboratory researching cancer genomics and proteomics. She is also focusing on developing tools and pipelines for the lab.
Brandon Tsai, BS
Brandon is an MD/PhD student at the UCLA David Geffen School of Medicine. As an undergraduate student at UCLA, he studied bioinformatics and tumor immunology under the mentorship of Dr. Owen Witte.
Nicholas Wang, MHS
Nicholas Wang is currently a graduate student in the bioinformatics IDP studying germline effects on cancer evolution. His background includes a biomedical engineering degree from the University of Toronto, a master’s in health science from Johns Hopkins, and work as a bioinformatician at a clinical service laboratory. His primary research interests involve the development and application of broadly applicable cancer screening and diagnostic methods.
Nicholas Eric Wiltsie, MS
Sr. Software Engineer
Nicholas Eric Wiltsie has two degrees in Mechanical Engineering from MIT: a Bachelor of Science in 2010 and a Master of Science in 2012. Nick’s most recent position was a Senior Interdisciplinary Systems Engineer at Amazon Robotics. As the Senior Interdisciplinary Systems Engineer, Nick developed systems requirements, concept of operations document, FMEA for Amazon warehouses’ prototype automated item intake and storage system. Nick likes photography, tinkering with robots, board games and training his chihuahua-pit bull, Zero.
Helena grew up in Indonesia before moving to Vancouver, Canada to study Biophysics at the University of British Columbia. Her primary research interest is in using omics to improve early diagnosis and patient care in cancer. She is also interested in expanding her skills in machine learning and data science.
Selina is a Ph.D. student in the Medical Informatics program at UCLA interested in translational medicine. She received a BS in Biochemistry from Boston College and worked in Biomarker & Assay Development before coming to UCLASelina is a first-year Ph.D. student in the Medical Informatics program at UCLA interested in translational medicine. She received a BS in Biochemistry from Boston College and worked in Biomarker & Assay Development before coming to UCLA.
Takafumi Yamaguchi, MSc
Taka studied genetics and molecular biology at the University of Manitoba, before beginning a Master of Science at the University of Toronto, where he learned systems biology, programming and next generation sequencing (NGS) data analysis under the supervision of Dr. Fritz Roth. Upon graduation in 2013, Taka started working with Dr. Paul Boutros. His current research focus is on NGS data analysis and the development of NGS analysis pipelines, including DNA read quality control, alignment and mutation calling.
Nicole is currently a PhD. student in the Human Genetics department at UCLA. After receiving her B.S. in animal science at Cal Poly San Luis Obispo, she decided to pursue her interest in the application of computational solutions to biological problems. As a member of the Boutros lab she plans to study the genomic landscape of cancer.
Chenghao Zhu, PhD
Chenghao completed his PhD in nutritional biology in 2019, and worked as a postdoctoral scholar at UC Davis before joining the UCLA Jonsson Comprehensive Cancer Center in August, 2020. He is currently interested in cancer proteogenomics.