Anne Andrews Group
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Principal Investigator

Senior Scientists/Postdocs

Graduate Students

Research Assistant

Rotation Students

Undergraduate Students


Lab Alumni


People ­ ­ ­ ­ ­ ­ ­

­­­Principal Inves­tigato­r: ­

Anne Milasincic Andrews­, Ph.D.

anne.andrews(at)ucla.e­du ­

(310)794-9421 ­

­­Anne Andrews, Ph.D., is a Professor of Psychiatry & Biobehavioral Sciences and Chemistry & Biochemistry at the University of California, Los Angeles. At UCLA, Andrews leads efforts in basic and translational research on anxiety and depression, and at the nexus of nanoscience and neuroscience. Andrews’ interdisciplinary research team focuses on understanding how the serotonin system and particularly, the serotonin transporter, modulate neurotransmission to influence complex behaviors including anxiety, mood, stress responsiveness, and learning and memory. Dr. Andrews was a guest of the White House during President Obama’s announcement of the BRAIN initiative, which she helped to shape.

­Dr. Andrews earned her B.S. in chemistry from the Pennsylvania State University and received her Ph.D. in chemistry as a U.S. Department of Education Fellow working at the National Institute of Mental Health. There, she was later a postdoctoral fellow and senior staff fellow. Andrews has been the recipient of an NIH Fellows Award for Research Excellence, an Eli Lily Outstanding Young Analytical Chemist Award, an American Parkinson’s Disease Association Research Award, and a Brain and Behavior Research Foundation Independent Investigator Award. She is a member of the American College of Neuropsychopharmacology, International Society for Serotonin Research vice president, an advisory board member for the International Society for Monitoring Molecules in Neuroscience, and serves as Associate Editor for ACS Chemical Neuroscience.

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Senior Scientists/Postdoctoral Fellows

Dr. Hongyan Yang


Dr. Yang earned a B.S. in Biology & Applied Electronics (1997) and a Ph.D. in Molecular Neuroscience (2002) from East China Normal University in Shanghai. Her doctoral work, titled “Function of NMDA receptors in the development of the central auditory system”, was carried out under the supervision of Prof. Xinde Sun. In 2002, she joined Prof. Liangyou Rui’s group as a Postdoctoral Fellow in the Department of Molecular & Integrative Physiology at the University of Michigan. There, she studied the mechanisms of obesity and type II diabetes. In 2003, Dr. Yang joined the laboratory of Prof. Jill Becker in the Molecular & Behavioral Neuroscience Institute at the University of Michigan. Under Dr. Becker’s guidance, she focused on investigating gender differences in drug abuse, rapid effects of estradiol in the brain, and sex chromosome effects in Parkinson’s Disease. In 2011, she joined the laboratory of Prof. Andrews where she is currently investigating the influences of neonatal serotonin transporter disruption on adult serotonin system circuitry. Dr. Yang is also working on fast scan cyclic voltammetry to study serotonin system function in vivo.

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Graduate Student Researchers


Nako Nakatsuka


Nako­Nako graduated from Fordham University with a BS in Chemistry and a minor in French in 2012 . She carried out undergraduate research under the mentorship of Professor Ipsita Banerjee and her bionanotechnology research focused on design, synthesis and assembly of peptide bolaamphiphiles for potential tissue engineering and drug delivery applications; using elastin and collagen functionalized peptide nanotubes as potential scaffolds for cartilage regeneration; generating soy-peptide hydrogels that encapsulate and release various drugs incited by pH environment. In addition, she explored specifically designed peptide sequences for cell penetration and examined the effect of size, charge and specific amino acid moieties for cellular penetration. Additional work involved gene therapy with siRNA bound microtubular networks, as well as biomimetic formation of gold, platinum and silver nanoparticles using specific peptide sequences. Nako's joint graduate research between Dr. Anne Andrews' and Dr. Paul Weiss' labs  focuses on developing nanoscale surface chemistry for small-molecule such as neurotransmitters, in addition to capturing multiple molecules on the surface to create a multiplexed neurochip (working with Huan and Wei-Ssu). In her off time, she likes to compete in Triathlons


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Rotation Students

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Undergraduate Student Researchers

Hannah Chung

Hannah Chung

Hannah is currently majoring in Biochemistry and minoring in German at UCLA with plans to graduate in 2017. She is interested in discovering chemical anomalies in the brain associated with depression, with the ultimate goal of treating depressive symptoms.

Brandon Yoshida

Brandon Yoshida

Brandon is pursuing a degree in Chemistry. His interests are in organic chemistry and he hopes he can apply the knowledge he's learned in the classroom to the lab. He is eager to study the deeper intricacies of the serotonin transmitter system and cannot wait to contribute to the scientific world.


Xinyi (Cindy) Cheng

Cindy is a UCLA undergraduate student majoring in chemistry with plans to graduate in the Spring of 2018. She plans to go to graduate school to pursue a PhD in biochemistry after graduation. She has a keen interest in neuroscience and more specifically how different chemicals, neurotransmitters or drugs, affect the neural pathways, which ultimately guide our behaviors and thoughts.


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Current Collaborators

Alexandre Bonnin (Department of Neuroscience, USC)

Cathy Cahill (School of Medicine, UC Irvine )

Christopher J. Evans (Director, Brain Research Institute, Semel Institute for Neuroscience & Human Behavior, UCLA)

Julie G. Hensler (Department of Pharmacology, School of Medicine, UT Health Science Center San Antonio)

Michael E. Jung (Department of Chemistry & Biochemistry, UCLA)

Andrea Kasko (Department of Bioengineering , UCLA)

Andrew F. Leuchter (Director, Laboratory of Brain, Behavior & Pharmacology, Semel Institute for Neuroscience & Human Behavior, UCLA)

Hal Monbouquette (Chair, Chemical and Biomolecular Engineering, UCLA )

Pablo Moya (Department of Neurobiology, Universidad de Valparaiso)

Kevin Plaxco (Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry, UCSB)

Aydogan Ozcan (Department of Electrical Engineering, Engineering, UCLA)

Sandra J. Rosenthal (Director, Vanderbilt Institute of Nanoscale Science and Engineering and Department of Chemistry, Vanderbilt University)

Damla Senturk (Department of Biostatistics, UCLA)

Tom Soh (School of Engineering, Stanford)

Milan N. Stojanovic (Department of Biomedical Engineering and Systems Biology, Columbia University)

Greg M. Swain (Department of Chemistry, Michigan State University)

­Steve G. Weber (Department of Chemistry, University of Pittsburgh)

­Paul S. Weiss (Director, California NanoSystems Institute, Department of Chemistry & Biochemistry, and Department of Material Science & Engineering, UCLA)

­Yang Yang (Department of Engineering, UCLA)

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Lab Alumni

Postdoctoral Researchers

Liane Slaughter, Ph.D. - Posdoctoral researcher at Hong Kong University

Wei-Ssu Liao, Ph.D. - Assistant Professor of Chemistry at National Taiwan University

Graduate Students

Huan H. Cao, Ph.D. - Postdoctoral researcher at UC Merced, Merced, CA

Brendan Biekmann, Ph.D. - Instructor at the Webb School

T. Lee Gilman, Ph.D. - Postdoctoral research associate in the Department of Psychology at Kent State University, Kent, OH

Stefanie C. Altieri, Ph.D. - Postdoctoral researcher at the Rangos Research Center at Children's Hospital of Pittsburgh, University of Pittsburgh Medical Center

Sarawut Cheunkar, Ph.D. - Faculty at the School of Bioresources and Technology, King Mongkut's University of Technology

Amanda Bressler, Ph.D.

Mitchell Schuster, Ph.D. - Consultant, Knowledgent

Amit Vaish, Ph.D. - Scientist-Discovery Analytical Sciences, Amgen

Yogesh Singh, Ph.D. - Process Engineer, Intel Corporation, Hillboro, OR

Walter Jackson, III, Ph.D. - Biomedical Sciences at Pennsylvania State University, Hershey, PA

Stefan Pajtek, M.S. - Research Associate in fMRI imaging, Western Psychiatric Institute and Clinic, University of Pittsburgh Medical School, Pittsburgh, PA

Beth Luellen, Ph.D.- Freelance Science Writer

Xiomara Perez, Ph.D.- Research Neuroscientist, SRI International, Menlo Park, CA

Matthew E. Szapacs, Ph.D. - Principal Scientist, Glaxo Smith Kline, King of Prussia, PA

Erica Unger, Ph.D. - Assistant Professor of Biology, Lebanon Valley College, Annville PA

Tiffany A. Mathews, Ph.D. - Coordinator for Women in Engineering Program at Pennsylvania State University,University Park, PA

Angela C. Chisnell, M.S. - Pfizer Pharmaceuticals

Denise E. Fedele, M.S. - Ph.D. completed in Switzerland


William Perdomo

Chloe Purgason - moved on to Clinical Nursing Research Opportunity, June 2015

Drumil Bhatt - graduated from UCLA with a B.S. in Neuroscience and is attending the Medical College of Wisconsin in Milwaukee, Fall 2015

Jeffrey A. Lee - graduated from UCLA with B.S. in Biochemistry, June 2014

Woonwoo R. Choi - graduated from UCLA with B.S. in Neuroscience, June 2014

Pasha Dabiri - graduated from UCLA with B.S. in Psychobiology, June 2012

Hannah J. O'Brien - graduated from UCLA with B.S. in Biology, June 2012

Jeffrey Xu - graduated from UCLA with B.S. in Molecular, Cell & Developmental Biology, June 2012

Brian D. Ezekian - currently a med student at University of Virginia School of Medicine

Roya Nezarati - currently a Ph.D. student in Chemistry at Texas A&M

Michelle Martinez-Rivera - currently a Ph.D. student at the University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center

Daniel J. Ramos - currently a med student at UMDNJ Robert Wood Johnson Medical School

Shoba A. Belegundu - currently a med student at University of Cincinnati

Jason B. Ochroch - currently a med student at Jefferson Medical College

Lauren E. Sawarynski - recently graduated from Yale's Physician Associate Program, currently working as P.A. in Hartford, CT

Chubi A. Ihunnah - currently a Ph.D. student in Pharmacology at University of Pittsburgh

Claudia A. Rodriguez

Brooke B. Osborne - recently graduated from Colorado State University with Master's in Environmental Science, enrolling in Brown University's Ph.D. Ecology program Fall 2013

Alexandra R. Lewis - studying Veterinary Medicine at Colorado State University

Laura B. Taylor - received M.D. from University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine, currently a resident at St. Margaret in Pittsburgh, PA

John E. McManigle - pursuing an M.D. at Duke University and a Ph.D. at Oxford University

Tara N. Chrzanowski - currently a Research Scientist at MPI Research

Ashley L. Gibb - NSF graduate fellow in Chemistry at University of California, Berkeley

Lisa U. Dudek - currently a Ph.D. student in Chemistry & Biochemistry at UCLA

Kaycee M. Hulet - completed degree in International and Family Law at Brigham Young University

Lindsey M. Schneider

Jacqueline F. Morris - received Ph.D. in Neuropharmacology from University of Pennsylvania

Christopher K. Materese - received Ph.D. in Chemistry from University of North Carolina, Postdoctoral Fellow at NASA Ames Astrophysics & Astrochemistry Laboratory

Dawn E. Rupp

Christian M. Squillante

Kristen E. Seabright

Drew Kiraly

Kenneth J. Sowinski

Adam L. Numis - received M.D. from Harvard University, residency at University of California, San Francisco, Pediatric Neurology at UCLA Mattel Children's Hospital

Eric D. Horowitz - received Ph.D. in Chemistry from Georgia Tech, Postdoctoral Fellow at University of North Carolina

Corey M. McCann - entered M.D./Ph.D. program at Harvard University

Katherine Sixt - received Ph.D. in Biochemistry, Cell and Molecular Biology from Johns Hopkins Medicine, Postdoctoral Fellow at National Cancer Institute

Robert S. Bridges - graduate school in Pharmacology at Columbia University

Francesca A. Coppelli - received M.D. as Howard Hughes Fellow from University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine, currently practicing Internal Medicine at Philadelphia VA Medical Center

Marimar D. Aponte - received a Ph.D. in Immunology from University of Pittsburgh

George M. Jawahar 

Erin J. Steck - Research Scientist at DuPont

Douglas L. Sheridan - received Ph.D. in Neuroscience from Yale University, working in new therapeutic biologics at Alexion

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