current members

Joe Bondy-Denomy

Principal Investigator

Joe is an Associate Professor at UCSF, in the Department of Microbiology & Immunology. Joe went to the University of Waterloo for his undergrad in Biology (Microbiology specialization) and spent time as a co-op student in labs at Western University (London, ON) and McGill University (Montreal, QC). Joe then attended the University of Toronto to complete his PhD in Alan Davidson's lab where he studied interactions between bacteriophages and their host bacteria, focusing on the effects of lysogeny and the CRISPR-Cas immune system. In 2015, Joe started the lab at UCSF as a Faculty Fellow and in November of 2017, became an Assistant Professor. In July of 2020, he was promoted to Associate Professor, with tenure.

The lab is currently focused on studying the interactions between bacteriophages and their bacterial hosts, attempting to discover and characterize the bacterial immune systems that protect bacteria and the strategies that phages use to fight back.

Bálint Csörgő

Postdoctoral Fellow

Bálint joined the Bondy-Denomy Lab as a postdoctoral fellow in December, 2017. Bálint comes from Hungary and obtained his MSc in Biochemistry and Microbiology from the University of Szeged. He completed his PhD working on the design, construction, and optimization of E. coli strains for biotechnological purposes in the lab of György Pósfai at the Biological Research Center (BRC) of the Hungarian Academy of Sciences in Szeged, Hungary. He then moved to the lab of Csaba Pál, also at the BRC, where he worked as a research associate developing novel recombineering-based bacterial gene-editing tools, as well as studying various aspects of antibiotic resistance evolution in bacteria. As a Marie Skłodowska-Curie Fellow in the Bondy-Denomy Lab, he is working on the development and utilization of alternative CRISPR-Cas systems for gene-editing applications. Outside of the lab, Bálint enjoys spending time with his family, as well as a variety of sporting activities including basketball, soccer, swimming, and biking.


Jingwen Guan

Postdoctoral Fellow

Erin Huiting

Graduate Student (BMS)
Erin Huiting is a Biomedical Sciences (BMS) graduate student and joined the Bondy-Denomy lab in July 2020. Erin grew up in the mountains of Evergreen, Colorado and pursued a degree in Molecular Biology at Colgate University (sadly, she did not receive any free toothpaste). Prior to and following graduation, she worked at the NIH studying the persistence of HIV reservoirs and anti-viral host immunity, as well as the efficacy of HIV cure strategies in human clinical trials, within the lab of Drs. Tae-Wook Chun and Anthony Fauci. As an NSF Fellow in the Bondy-Denomy lab, Erin will continue studying immunology and host-pathogen interactions. She is excited to study new bacterial immune systems within native host organisms, especially uncovering how the Cyclic oligonucleotide-Based Antiphage Signaling System (CBASS) works in Pseudomonas. In her spare time, Erin is involved in social advocacy, exploring the outdoors, or playing/watching soccer.

Matt Johnson

Graduate Student

Shweta Karambelkar

Postdoctoral Fellow

Shweta is a postdoc in the Bondy-Denomy lab, looking at how anti-CRISPRs do what they do. A fascination for phages has brought her here all the way from her home country India. Her interest in microbes, acquired early on as an undergrad in Mumbai grew into a fascination under the aegis of Prof. Valakunja Nagaraja at the Indian Institute of Science, Bangalore, where Shweta completed an integrated Masters-PhD program. Her doctoral work dealt with discovering a new mechanism regulating an unusual DNA modification in bacteriophage Mu and understanding the biosynthesis of the modification. In the Bondy-Denomy lab, Shweta is currently focusing on unraveling novel anti- CRISPR mechanisms. In her free time, she enjoys distance running, especially when combined with exploring the beauty of San Francisco. She loves reading all kinds of books and learning Spanish.

Claire Kokontis

Rotation Student


Eric Laderman

Junior Specialist

Lina León

Graduate Student (TETRAD)

Lina is a TETRAD graduate student in the Bondy-Denomy lab. She is from Bogota, Colombia and is a graduate of the University of Florida with a degree in Chemistry. Lina joined the lab in 2016 and passed her qual exam to become the second PhD candidate in the lab! Lina is using the minimal Type I-C CRISPR-Cas system to understand how the most common CRISPR effector nuclease in the world (Cas3) does its job. 

Yuping Li

Postdoctoral Fellow[at]

Yuping joined the Bondy-Denomy lab in October, 2019 as a postdoctoral scholar. Yuping was a graduate student in the Sherlock and Petrov labs at Stanford University. Her Ph.D. work focused on understanding evolutionary processes quantitatively using S. cerevisiae. Originally from China, Yuping got her undergraduate degree in Bioinformatics at Huazhong University of Sci. & Tech., China, where she worked with Dr. Yu Xue on the computational construction of the lysine acetylation network. After her undergraduate, Yuping was interested in learning how to conduct biological experiments and worked as a research technician with Dr. Hong Zhang at National Institute of Biological Sciences, China, to study developmental biology in C. elegans. In the Bondy-Denomy lab, Yuping is eager to develop genetic editing tools in order to understand the biology of phiKZ phage. Outside the lab, Yuping likes climbing rocks, running trails, hiking the wilderness and looking funny in her VR headset trying to master VR games.

Nicole Marino

Postdoctoral Fellow

Nicole is a post-doc in the Bondy-Denomy lab identifying novel class II anti-CRISPR proteins. She obtained her undergraduate degree in Biochemistry/Cell Biology and Classical Studies at Rice University in Texas. She completed her graduate work in John Boothroyd’s lab at Stanford University, where she studied how Toxoplasma gondii transports effector proteins into the host cell. In her free time, she enjoys exploring live music and comedy shows in San Francisco and dancing Argentine tango.

Senén Mendoza

Graduate Student (TETRAD)

Senén Mendoza is a TETRAD graduate student in the Bondy-Denomy lab. He was raised in Miami, Florida where he earned a B.S. in Biochemistry and Molecular Biology at the University of Miami. In the BD Lab, Senen is studying the ways that bacteria regulate their defense systems. His life on the west coast consists of science, food, and music.

Sukrit Silas

Postdoctoral Fellow

Alex Wirganowicz

Junior Specialist

Yang (Sunny) Zhang

Specialist (joint with Kortemme and Fraser Labs)



former members


Adair Borges

Graduate Student 2015-2020

Current: Miller Postdoctoral Fellow, UC Berkeley

Caroline Mahendra

Assistant Specialist 2017-2020

Current: Product Manager, Nalagenetics, Jakarta, Indonesia

Bettie Osuna

Graduate Student 2017-2019

Current: Octant Bio, Emeryville, CA

Leah Roe

Staff Research Associate (joint with Fraser Lab), 2019-2020

Current: Graduate Student, UC Berkeley

Jenny Zhang

Undergraduate Student 2015-2019

Current: Graduate Student, UCSF

Sutharsan Govindarajan

Postdoctoral Scholar 2017-2019

Current: Assistant Professor, SRM University, Amaravati, India

Allyson Park

Undergraduate student, 2019-2020

Current: Undergraduate student, UC Berkeley

Ben Rauch

Postdoctoral Scholar, 2016-2017
Current: Scientist, Zymergen, Emeryville, CA

Joel Berry

Associate Specialist, 2016-2017
Current: Scientist, Caribou Biosciences, Emeryville, CA

Bardo Castro

Junior Specialist

Current: Graduate Student, University of California, Davis 


Rafael Pinilla Redondo


Visiting Graduate Student, Oct. 2018 - Jun. 2019

Current: Graduate Student, University of Copenhagen, Denmark

Alexis Villani

Rotation Student

Fall, 2020

Current: Graduate Student, UCSF

Timmy Suh

Rotation Student

Fall, 2020

Current: Graduate Student, UCSF

Jasmine Sims

Rotation Student

Spring, 2020

Current: Graduate Student, UCSF

Carlos Zuazo


Rotation Student

Spring, 2019

Current: Graduate Student, UCSF

Fatema Saifuddin

Rotation Student

Fall, 2018

Current: Graduate Student, UCSF

Varun Bhadkamkar

Rotation Student (Tetrad)

Fall, 2017

Current: Graduate Student, UCSF

Adam Catching

Rotation Student 

Spring, 2018

Current: Graduate Student, UCSF

Sruthi Kalavacherla

Computational Intern

Computational Intern, 2020

Current: Undergraduate, MIT

Anika Tiwari

High-School Student

Summer Student, 2018, 2019

Current: High-School Student

Arya Sharma

High-School Student

Summer Student, 2019

Current: Undergraduate, UC Berkeley

Ashika John

Undergraduate Student

Undergraduate student 2018-2019

Current: Undergraduate, UC Berkeley

Chris Waters

Tetrad Rotation Student

Fall 2017

Current: Graduate Student, UCSF

Veronica Escalante


Tetrad Rotation Student

Fall 2016

Current: Graduate Student, UCSF

Ry Young


Director, Center for Phage Technology
Sadie Hatfield Professor,
Dept. of Biochemistry and Biophysics, Texas A&M

Salvador Alcaire


Summer Student, 2016

Current: Dentist

Tina Solvik


Rotation Student, spring 2016 (BMS)

Current: Graduate Student, UCSF

Yuliya Birman


Rotation Student, spring 2016 (iPQB)

Current: Graduate Student, UCSF

Kelsey Hickey


Rotation Student, 2015 (Tetrad)

Current: Graduate Student, UCSF