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Research Staff

Bryan BlakerBryan Blaker,
Clinical Research Associate

Bryan graduated from Binghamton University with a B.S. in Biology, Genetics, and a B.A. in Social Sciences, Environment and Evolution. He is a Nationally Registered Emergency Medical Technician joining Dr. Perl’s laboratory to further explore his passion in the medical field from a clinical research perspective.



Lucero Blaker

Lucero Blaker,
Clinical Research Associate

Lucero graduated with a B.S. in Integrative Neuroscience from Binghamton University in 2021 and is a nationally certified medical assistant. With extensive experience in ENT and urgent care treatment, she is dedicated to providing high-quality healthcare, combining her academic expertise with practical skills to enhance patient well-being. She also received her Mental Health First Aid certification at SUNY Downstate Medical University in 2018.

Jorge Cabezas

Jorge Cabezas,
Senior Research Support Specialist

Jorge graduated from RIT in 2017 with a B.S. in Biotechnology and Molecular Science. He has been with Upstate for 2 the past two year and fully joined the Dr. Perl’s lab in 2022.

Aparna GodavarthyAparna Godavarthy,
Research Associate

Working in NAC clinical trial study of Immune cells of Control and SLE patients, mainly focusing on the influence of increased levels of HRES-1/Rab4 on gene expression studies and this also includes studying the Molecular basis of increased levels of HRES-1/Rab4 in SLE patients.



Joshua Lewis

Joshua Lewis,
Senior Research Support Specialist

Josh joined Dr. Perl’s laboratory as a Research Technician in 2018. He graduated with a B.S. in Neuroscience from Binghamton University in 2014 and subsequently worked as a Laboratory Assistant at the Hunter James Kelly Research Institute in downtown Buffalo from 2015 to 2018.



Jessica NolanJessica Nolan,
Senior Research Support Specialist

Jessica joined Dr. Perl’s Laboratory in 2022. She graduated with a B.S./M.S. in Chemistry with a concentration in Biology from the University at Albany, SUNY in 2021. There she worked as a Research Assistant in an Analytical Chemistry laboratory. In Dr. Perl’s laboratory, Jessica focuses on metabolomics utilizing Liquid Chromatography – Mass Spectrometry (LC-MS).


Seong Hee Park

Joy (Seonghee) Park,
PhD student

PhD student. Graduated from Hunter with a BA in Biochemistry in 2017, worked as a Research Associate at Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai in NYC from 2015 to 2019.



Dilip Rao

Dilip Rao,
Senior Research Support Specialist

Dilip joined Dr. Perl's laboratory in 2022. He graduated with an MS in genetics from the University of Rochester in 2009 and worked at the University of Rochester and Rochester General Hospital Research Institute previously.



FNU Ruchi

FNU Ruchi,
Project Manager

Dr. Ruchi graduated with an M.D. degree from Stavropol State Medical University and completed her internship training in India. During her five-year tenure in the intensive care unit working as intensive care physician, she recognized the pivotal role of evidence-based medicine. To further augment her expertise, she pursued a clinical research fellowship at the University of Virginia, delving into the foundations of evidence-based medicine. In 2023, she joined Dr. Perl's lab as a project manager with her extensive research and clinical experience to explore advanced treatment approaches for individuals with Systemic Lupus Erythematosus.

Mahsa Sadeghzadeh

Mahsa Sadeghzadeh,
PHD Student

Mahsa joined Dr. Perl's lab as a PhD student in 2023. She graduated from Tabriz University of Medical Sciences with a Bachelor of Science in Medical Laboratory Science. Before starting her PhD education, she worked as a research assistant at the Immunology Research Center, Tabriz University of Medical Sciences.

Xiaojing WangXiaojing Wang,
Senior Research Support Specialist

Xiaojing joined Dr. Perl’s laboratory in 2022. She graduated with a M.D. from Tianjin Medical University in 1988, then immediately she practiced as an Oral Maxillofacial surgeon from 1988 to 2000. Thereafter, she has more than 20 years of experience in biomedical research, including working in Penn State College of Medicine and Upstate Medical University.   Her past research focused on metabolism and function of poly amine in cancer progression and application of nanotechnology in anti-inflammation . Currently her research focus is to deep understanding the developments of systemic lupus erythematosus using various animal models. She is also a part of the Rheumatology Clinical Trials team.


Thomas Winans,
Post-Doctoral Associate

Thomas is a recent graduate of the Perl laboratory with a Ph.D. in biochemistry. The focus of his research is on the effects of oxidative stress caused by Rab4A overactivation in systemic lupus erythematosus.