Araç Laboratory at UChicago

Lab Members

The Araç lab is a multicultural group committed to fostering an environment of diversity and inclusion in the workplace.

Jingxian Li

Jingxian Li

Postdoctoral Scholar

Jingxian grew up in China and got her PhD in biology from Tsinghua University in 2015. She joined the Araç Lab as a postdoctoral scholar and is currently continuing her work focusing on the interaction between Latrophilin and its ligand Teneurin.

jingxianli(at)uchicago.edu

Gabriel Carmona Rosas

Gabriel Carmona Rosas

Postdoctoral Scholar

Gabriel was born and raised in Mexico City. He received his undergraduate degree in Psychology and Neuroscience in 2014, and his PhD degree in Biochemistry in 2019, both from the National Autonomous University of Mexico (UNAM). During graduate school, Gabriel worked on the function and regulation of adrenergic receptors using different biochemical and microscopic approaches. He joined the Araç Lab in 2019 as a postdoctoral scholar.

gcarmona(at)uchicago.edu

Sumit Bandekar

Sumit Bandekar

Postdoctoral Scholar

Sumit completed his undergraduate degree at the University of Michigan-Dearborn where he majored in Biochemistry with a minor in Physics. He completed his Ph.D. in Medicinal Chemistry at the University of Michigan in 2019 in the laboratory of John Tesmer (now at Purdue University). Sumit’s graduate work centered around structural biology of the RhoGEF Trio, a Gq/11 effector implicated in uveal melanoma. He joined the Araç Lab in 2020 as a postdoctoral scholar.

sjbandekar(at)uchicago.edu

Szymon Kordon

Szymon Kordon

Graduate Student - Biochemistry and Molecular Biophysics

Szymon grew up in Poland, where he received his master’s degree in Pharmaceutical Biotechnology at the Wrocław University of Science and Technology. After finishing his studies he moved to the US in 2015, where he worked in the Bob Keenan laboratory at University of Chicago, studying membrane protein co- and post-translational targeting and insertion pathways. Szymon joined the lab in 2019 through the Biochemistry and Molecular Biophysics Graduate Program.

skordon(at)uchicago.edu

Jorge Alvarado

Jorge Alvarado

Graduate Student - Neurobiology

Jorge was born in Peru and grew up in Miami, FL. He completed his undergrad at Amherst College in MA, earning a Bachelor of Arts degree in Neuroscience and Russian in 2012, and decided to pursue a career in research. Previous work includes CSPα and Tau in SNARE-complex assembly at the Dr. Thomas Südhof lab, and OCRL in intraocular pressure and primary cilia in the dLGN and superior colliculus at the Dr. Yang Sun lab at Stanford University. He is now completing his PhD in Neurobiology at UChicago and joined the Arac lab in 2019. Hobbies include swimming, video editing, and salsa (the dancing kind).

jalvarado(at)uchicago.edu

Hagerah Malik

Hagerah Malik

Graduate Student - MSTP/Neurobiology

Hagerah is from NY and obtained her Bachelor’s degree in Liberal Arts from Sarah Lawrence College in 2018. During undergrad, she studied post-translational modifications of CIITA and its interaction with the scaffolding protein 14-3-3B. She then worked at the Icahn School of Medicine at Mt. Sinai in NYC studying the role of purinergic signaling in HIV infection before moving to Chicago in 2019 to begin her studies in UChicago’s Medical Scientist Training Program. She joined the lab in September 2020 to pursue her PhD in neurobiology. Her hobbies include reading, trying new recipes, decorating cakes, taking walks by the lake, drawing, and spending time with her cats.

hmalik(at)uchicago.edu

Indya Weathers

Indya Weathers

Graduate Student- Biochemistry and Molecular Biophysics

Indya Weathers graduated with her Bachelors of Science in the department of Chemistry & Biochemistry from the University of California, Los Angeles in 2019. Before attending UCLA, she was funded as a Bridges to Baccalaureate Research Scholar to study the role of the C1q protein in neurogenesis and aging at the University of California, Irvine at the Dr. Aileen Anderson Lab. In her undergraduate research training, she was an IMSD Scholar in the Undergraduate Research Center Sciences studying eukaryotic gene regulation and the role that the spliceosome components play in alternative splicing events at the Dr. Guillaume Chanfreau lab. She is now completing her PhD in Biochemistry and Molecular Biophysics at the University of Chicago and joined the Araç and Ozkan Labs in September of 2021. In her free time, Indya enjoys painting, gaming with friends, visiting cultural centers in the city, and engaging in outdoor recreational activities.

iweathers(at)uchicago.edu

Brock Adams

Brock Adams

Graduate Student

brockadams(at)uchicago.edu

Ethan Dintzner

Ethan Dintzner

Undergraduate Student

Ethan was born in Los Angeles, California and later moved to Austin, Texas before attending UChicago as an undergrad in 2019. He joined the Araç Lab early 2020 and is working towards a degree in molecular biology and mathematics. In Ethan’s free time he likes to read, walk and study music.