Schlossmacher Lab

Lab Members

Current Members

Julianna J. Tomlinson, PhD
[Sr. Research Associate] Dr. Tomlinson has a background in biochemistry and molecular biology. Since 2012, she has been involved in project development and co-leads the research activities of the lab. Her own scientific focus is to develop mouse models of autosomal dominant PD-linked genes with the long-term goal of better modeling PD as a complex disease. She received a Parkinson Society Canada Basic Research Fellowship (2008-2010) and has been supported by their Pilot Project Grant (2010-2011). She was a co-investigator on a MJF Foundation funded grant on LRRK2 (2010-2012) and served as Principal Investigator on grants obtained from the Weston Brain Institute (2014-2016).
current member
Earl Brown, PhD
[Professor Emeritus] Dr. Brown is a virologist and semi-retired Professor, who works with the Schlossmacher team since 2013. His expertise in virology and immune function and his experimental models to test virus-host interactions are critical to our study of the role of Parkinson-linked genes in host defenses.
Qiubo Jiang, PhD
[Sr. Research Associate] Dr. Jiang has a strong background in electrophysiology, animal studies, molecular biology and characterization of recombinant proteins. She is involved in several ongoing research projects as well as being the lab manager since 2012.
current member
Michaela Lunn, MSc
[Ph.D. Candidate] Michaela received her M.Sc. under the joint supervision of Drs. Shawn Hayley at Carleton University and Michael Schlossmacher (2017-2019) with the thesis: Elucidating the Role of LRRK2 in Innate Immunity. Her Ph.D. studies in the Schlossmacher lab have continued to expand on this work, demonstrating a clear role for PD-linked LRRK2 (and disease-linked mutations) in host defences against pathogens. Interestingly, this role is demonstrated specifically in the periphery, and with a female sex bias. Thesis: Role of LRRK2 in Neuropathology Following Pathogenic Infections.
Nathalie A. Lengacher, MSc
[Senior Research Technician]. Ms. Lengacher joined our team in 2016 and has applied her experience from an industry laboratory to optimizing existing- and creating new ELISA-based technical platforms to quantify alpha-synuclein and other PD-linked proteins. She completed her MSc in our lab in 2021: Investigating the subcellular localization of parkin in human Substantia nigra. She is involved in the pathological analysis of human autopsy material as well as the analysis of mouse modelling studies performed in the Schlossmacher lab.   
current member
Kelsey Grimes, MSc
[Clinical Research Assistant] Kelsey joined the team in 2021 after completing her MSc at Queen's. She acts as coordinator for the pilot study titled the PREDIGT Score: A Questionnaire to Distinguish PD Patients from Other Subjects in the Clinic Setting at The Ottawa Hospital and the Elizabeth Bruyère Hospital. 

current member
Juan Li, PhD
[Postdoctoral Fellow/ Senior Methodologist I] Dr. Li has background in statistics, psychometrics, and data science; petroleum engineering; and applied mathematics. She joined the lab since 2018 and has been working on assessing and validating the PREDIGT Score to predict the risk of developing PD in still healthy population. She is the co-investigator of the observational study that pilot the PREDIGT Score using self-report online questionnaire and serves as the co-applicant on the grant for this study (Parkinson Research Consortium (PRC) Ottawa, 2021-2023). She has received Parkinson Society Canada Basic Research Fellowship (2019-2021), Crabtree Family Fellowship (PRC Ottawa, 2020-2021), and MDS Junior Award (International Congress of Parkinson’s Disease and Movement Disorders (MDS), 2019, Nice, France). 
current member
Karim Zahr Eddin, BSc
[M.Sc. Candidate] Karim graduated from the Biomedical Sciences program at the University of Ottawa in early 2021 and joined the Schlossmacher lab soon after to gain hands-on experience in the immunohistochemical field and learn more about the pathological aspects and molecular-biological variations in PD-related proteins in an infected mouse model. Thesis: The role of viral infections as seeding events in changes in α-synuclein metabolism and neuropathological outcomes in the olfactory circuitry of mice.
current member
Allison MacDonald, BSc
[MSc Candidate] Allison started her masters in molecular medicine and neuroscience with the Schlossmacher group in early 2022. She is investigating the interaction between alpha-synuclein and host immunity. She completed her BSc in medical biotechnology jointly through St. Lawrence College and the Sligo Institute of Technology, in Ireland.
current member
Quinton Hake-Volling, MSc
[Technician] Quinton received his M.Sc. in the Schlossmacher lab (2019-2021) with the thesis: Exploring a Role for the Parkinson Disease-Linked GBA1 Gene in Host Responses to Infections. During his graduate studies he held a Canada Graduate Scholarship - Master’s award (2020-2021) in addition to the Audrey Grant Parkinson’s Research Fellowship (2019-2020) and the David and Jill Hogg Family Fellowship (2020-2021), awarded through the Parkinson Research Consortium. He is now working under the supervision of both Dr. Schlossmacher and Dr. Steffany Bennett to better understand how lipids are implicated in GBA1’s role in host response to infection.
current member
Mounir El-Hakim
[Honours Student] Mounir is a 4th year student in the Translational and Molecular Medicine program at the University of Ottawa. He joined the Schlossmacher lab as a summer student in 2021, and is currently completing his honours project, where he investigates the effects of a mutation of the C95 residue of parkin on the fate of the protein downstream of dopamine stress.
current member
Josee Coulombe, PhD
Dr. Coulombe graduated with a PhD from UofO then went on to complete a Post-doc in neurobiology in France. She returned to Ottawa where she has been working as a research associate at the OHRI, first in Molecular Medicine then in the Cancer Therapeutics Program for the last 16 years. She recently joined the Schlossmacher group as a Sr. Research Associate.
current member
Ajanta Chatterji, Msc
[PhD Candidate] The lab recently welcomed Ajanta, a new PhD student in 2022 to work on the Parkin project. She has completed her M.Sc. studies in Biotechnology with thesis in redox-biochemistry studying the role of S-nitrosylation and S-glutathionylation in health and diseases from India, under the supervision of Dr. R. Sengupta. At Schlossmacher lab, she is extremely interested in investigating the neuroprotective role of human parkin against dopamine toxicity-mediated oxidative damage to neurons. She has recently received the 2022-2023 Shelby Hayter two-year Fellowship award from Parkinson’s Research Consortium, and is also supported by International Doctoral Scholarships from University of Ottawa.

Past lab members

Recent Graduates and Lab Members:

Natalie Lengacher, M.Sc. -
Thesis: Investigating the subcellular localization of parkin in human Substantia nigra, 2020-2021.
Jacqueline M. Tokarew, Ph.D
- Thesis: A novel role for the Parkinson disease-linked and neuromelanin-associated parkin protein as a cysteine-dependent redox-state regulator. 2013-2021.
Quinton Hake-Volling M.Sc - Thesis: Exploring a Role for the Parkinson Disease-Linked GBA1 Gene in Host Responses to Infections. 2019-2021.
Travis Fehr, M.Sc.
- Thesis: Characterizing cysteine modifications in Parkinson’s-linked parkin and their influence on dopaminergic cell health. 2019-2021.
Daniel N. El Kodsi, Ph.D - Thesis: Role of Parkin as an anti-oxidant. 2013-2020.
Christopher Ruosso, M.Sc. - Thesis: Characterization of alpha-synuclein as an anti-microbial protein. 2017- 2019.
Mansoureh Hakimi, Ph.D. – Thesis: Exploring the role of Parkinson’s-linked leucine-rich repeat kinase-2 in the immune system. 2009-2017.
Megan Fitzpatrick, M.Sc. – Co-supervised by Dr. Diane Lagace. Thesis: Motor deficits in an alpha-synuclein mouse model of Parkinson’s disease are not exacerbated by Gba1 mutation. 2014-2016; Graduated in 2016. Ms. Fitzpatrick was recognized with the Excellence in Graduate Studies, MSc Neuroscience Award from the University of Ottawa Faculty of Medicine in 2016.
Chantal Jagow, M.Sc. – Thesis: Quantification of a-synuclein in a new Parkinson’s disease model. 2014-2015. Ms. Jagow graduated with her M.Sc. from the University TU Darmstadt (Germany, EU) in 2015. All laboratory work for her thesis was carried out in our lab.
Hei S. (Mabel) Ao, M.Sc. – Co-supervised by Dr. Paul Albert. Thesis: Investigation of cis- and trans-acting transcriptional elements and signaling pathways that regulate the expression of Parkin. 2009-2014.
Priyanka Singh, M.Sc. – Co-supervised by Dr. Steffany Bennett. Thesis: The Role of Neutral Sphingolipids in the Pathogenesis of Parkinson Disease and Dementia with Lewy Bodies. 2010-2012. Graduated in 2012.

Undergraduate Fourth Year Honour’s Students:
Rayhane Mejlaoui, B.Sc. (2021-2022) 
Jasmine Khan, B.Sc. (2017-2018)
Quinton Hake-Volling, B.Sc. (2017-2018)
Irene Harmsen, B.Sc. (2014-2015)
Emma Grigor, B.Sc. (2013-2014)
Adel Farah, B.Sc. (2009-2010)
Erika Swinton, B.Sc. (2008-2009)

Former lab members include (in alphabetical order): Heather Boston, M.Sc.; Carolina Cieniak, Ph.D.; Hoda Chams El Dine; Dina Elleithy, B.Sc.; Kelsey Grimes B.Sc.; Tohru Kitada, M.D., Ph.D; Peter Kolodziej, B.Sc.; Paul Manninger, B.Sc.; Fanyi Meng, M.D.; Juliana Ng, B.Sc.; Angela P. Nguyen, MSc; Saba Samet, Bojan Shutinoski, PhD; B.Sc.; Nour Yahfoufi, PharmD., M. Med. Sc.; Yi-Yuan Zhou, M.D., M.Sc.