The NOBEL (nano-omic-bio-engineering-laboratory) will be comprised of an interdisciplinary group of experimental and computational engineers, scientists, and clinicians that aim to develop and optimize engineered tools to study muscle regeneration and muscle stem cell biology with a particular interest in chromatin and transcriptional regulation. Currently, we are recruiting students, post-doctoral fellows and research scientists to join us in our quest.

Primary Investigator:

Carlos Andres Aguilar, Ph.D.

Self-description in 10 words or less: My obsessions are my family, friends, profession and Michigan football.

Hobbies: Getting jumped on and being a pillow for my sons.

Name: Carlos Aguilar Uniquename: caguilar Department: BME Photo: Akhil Kantipuly Michigan Engineering Communications & Marketing


Postdoctoral Scholars

Kanishka de Silva, Ph.D.

Ph.D. Molecular Biology – University of Arkansas

Project: Transcriptional heterogeneity and chromatin dynamics of muscle stem cells
Self-description in 10 words or less: I strive to uncover the unknown.
Hobbies: Spending quality time with my family, hiking, cross country and downhill skiing, kayaking

Trisha Westerhof, Ph.D. (co-advised by Sofia Merajver)

Ph.D. Biological Sciences – University of California – Irvine

B.S. Microbiology & Molecular Genetics,and Human Biology – Michigan State University

Project: Microfluidic monitoring of stem cell migration and colony formation

Graduate Students

 Jacqueline Larouche
B.S. Biomedical Engineering – Georgia Institute of Technology
Project: Regenerative reprogramming after volumetric muscle loss
Hobbies: Riding horses, cross country skiing, almost every other outdoor athletic activity, and traveling.
Benjamin Yang
B.S. Biomedical Engineering – University of California San Diego
Project: Single-cell sequencing of cellular interactions
Self-description in 10 words or less: If science excites you, we’ll have plenty to talk about!
Hobbies: Hiking, photography, and table tennis.
Isabel Newton (co-advised by Michael Thouless)
B.S. Materials Science Engineering – Brown University
Project: Micro/Nanofluidic manipulation of nuclear mechanics
Self-description in 10 words or less: I really enjoy learning in all areas of my life.
Hobbies: Road biking, drawing, sewing, playing the piano, swimming

Neal Sanna
B.S. Medical Laboratory Science – Oakland University
Project: Reprogramming with Nuclear Plasticity
Self-description in 10 words or less: Hardwork and dedication in all that I do helps me stay passionate and curious.

PREP Students 

Jesus Castor-Macias

B.S. Biochemistry – University of Texas El Paso

Project: Engineered Artificial Muscle Fibers

Self-description: Inherently committed to self-improvement.

Yonas Simon

B.S. Biochemistry – University of Tennessee

Project: Combinatorial Control of Myogenic Reprogramming

Self-description: I set the bar so high; nobody can find it.

Hobbies: Slaying vampires, cooking, dancing, long-distance running, waving at strangers


Undergraduate Students

Scott Haskell

Hobbies: Classical/Latin guitar, mountain biking, and reading (especially novels by Kurt Vonnegut).

Krithika Balakrishnan

Self Description in 10 words or less: I’m always looking for my next adventure.
Hobbies: Singing, reading, swimming, playing the violin
Anthony Salmeron

Self description in 10 words or less: Working to give life a meaning beyond me
Hobbies: Soccer, fishing, kayaking, golf, Putt-Putt


Lab Mascots:

Alexander & Andrew Aguilar

Self-description in 10 words or less: Bring home candy.

Hobbies: Not napping, building and digging.