Current Members:

Dr. Hiroaki Matsunami

Principal Investigator

Dr. Joel Mainland
Joel Mainland received a B.A. in neuroscience from Columbia University and a Ph.D. in neuroscience at the University of California at Berkeley. His research interest lies in understanding how a molecule is translated into an olfactory percept.



Kaylin Adipietro
I graduated in 2005 from Allegheny College in PA with a B.S. in Biology. I worked for two years at the NIH/NIDCD, came to Duke in 2007 through the Cell and Molecular Biology PhD program and affiliated with the University Program in Genetics and Genomics in 2008 after joining the Matsunami Lab. The focus of my thesis work is to understand the functional evolution of primate odorant receptors (ORs). My work has been supported with funding from the Duke University Primate Genomics Initiative.


Ming-Shan Chien
Ming-Shan came from Taiwan where she received BS in horticulture and zoology. She also completed her MS in Zoology from National Taiwan University. Ming-Shan came to Duke through Developmental Biology Training Program in 2008 and decided to join UPGG in 2009. Her current work in Dr. Hiroaki Mastunami?s Lab is establishing a method to sequence transcripts derived from a single sensory cell to study how the cells are regulated to sense the diversity of the world.


Yue Jiang
Yue is a graduate student currently enrolled in the University Program of Genetics and Genomics at Duke University. He recieved his Bachelor's degree from The College of Life Sciences, Peking University.



Ruchira Sharma
I am in the Molecular Genetics and Microbiology program. I have lived most of my life in India. Before joining this lab I have a Bachelor's degree in Life Sciences from St. Xavier's College Mumbai and a Master's in Biochemistry from MSU Baroda. I work on the connection between olfaction and behavior. I am pursuing the mechanism of defensive behaviors shown by mice towards predators. I am an outgoing person. I enjoy watching movies and reading books about different cultures.


Linda Liu
Research Assistant


Peter Dong
Peter is currently a junior at Duke University. He joined the Matsunami Lab during the summer of 2010 and is investigating molecular mechanisms behind the axonal localization of odorant receptor neurons. Peter is also assessing the validity of HEK-293T heterologous cells by comparing luciferase assay results with prior in vivo data.


Mimi Zhan
Mimi is a senior undergraduate student pursuing her Bachelor's Degree in Chemistry at Duke University. She is currently working on her independent project in Dr.Matsunami's lab.



Past Members:
Dr. Sandeepa Dey
Rose Li
Akemi Toyama
Dr. Rich Roberts
Qiuyi Chi
Dr. Hanyi Zhuang
Dr. Yoshirou Ishimaru
Dr. Harumi Saito
Momoka Matsunami