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Faculty and Staff

Colleen Caleshu

Colleen is the lead genetic counselor in the Stanford Center for Inherited Cardiovascular Disease and a Clinical Assistant Professor in medical genetics at Stanford University. She received her masters in genetic counseling from the Johns Hopkins University and the National Human Genome Research Institute. Colleen currently serves as the co-chair of the NSGC Cardiovascular Genetics SIG. Colleen also served on an American Heart Association working committee for a recent publication on policy recommendations for genetics in cardiology. At Stanford she lectures in the medical school and genetic counseling program, sits on the psychosocial curriculum committee of the genetic counseling program, co-directs the cardiovascular genetics course, and supervises clinical rotations for trainees from the genetic counseling program and the medical genetics residency program. Her research interests include interpretation and use of genetic and genomic tests in cardiology and psychosocial impact of hereditary cardiovascular conditions.

Becca Fuhlbrigge

Becca Fuhlbrigge is a clinical research coordinator with the Ashley Lab. She grew up outside Boston and moved to Palo Alto after graduating from MIT in 2013 with a degree in Biology. After spending almost 4 years in the Fathman lab at Stanford studying type 1 diabetes, she moved to the Ashley lab to gain more clinical experience and explore new topics. Eventually, Becca hopes to go to medical school. In her free time, she enjoys hiking, cooking, and marveling at the Bay Area weather.

Megan Grove

Megan is a genetic counselor in the Ashley lab. While originally from Philadelphia, her family moved to California when she was in elementary school and she quickly realized her love for the Bay Area. She earned a B.A. in Human Biology and M.S. in Human Genetics and Genetic Counseling at Stanford, and she is thrilled to have the opportunity to continue to work at Stanford and with such an inspiring team. Her research focuses mainly on genome sequencing and genetic variant interpretation, specifically involving its application in genomic medicine. She is also involved in disease discovery efforts that aim to identify underlying causes of Mendelian cardiac conditions through the use of next-generation sequencing technologies. Finally, she is a member of the Stanford Center for Inherited Cardiovascular Disease, where she provides genetic counseling for patients with inherited cardiac conditions and their family members. She enjoys spending time with friends and family, traveling, and competitive sailboat racing.

Yong Huang

Yong Huang is a research professional at Ashley Lab. She received her MD from Shandong University School of Medicine in China, where she spent many years as a researcher and lecturer in human parasitology. She was a visiting scholar at Jikei University School of Medicine in Japan, and has been at Stanford since 2001 working on human gene therapy and now cardiovascular diseases. She is also a core member in the UDN team deriving iPSC from patient samples. An enthusiastic yogi, she also enjoys healthy cooking and outdoor activities.

Tia Moscarello

Tia is the on-call cardiovascular genetic counselor for the Stanford Center for Inherited Cardiovascular Disease. She is a native of Toronto, Canada and moved to the Bay Area to attend Stanford’s Masters in Human Genetics and Genetic Counseling. Tia is an active member of NSGC’s Student/New Member SIG and the Cardiovascular Genetics SIG. At Stanford she lectures in the genetic counseling program and supervises students’ clinical rotations. Her research interests include the development, implementation and evaluation of new genetic counseling service delivery models. Tia spends most of her free time in the dance studio, hiking, camping and wine tasting.

Mitchel Pariani

Mitchel Pariani is a genetic counselor at the Stanford Center for Inherited Cardiovascular Disease. He is a native of the East Bay and earned his BS in 2005 from UC Davis in Genetics and his MS in 2007 from CSU, Northridge in Genetic Counseling. He was a genetic counselor at Cedars-Sinai Medical Center in Los Angeles before returning home to the Bay Area in 2014. At Stanford he co-teaches the Cardiovascular Genetics course in the genetic counselling program and his research interests include hypertrophic cardiomyopathy, familial hypercholesterolemia and aortopathies. Outside of Stanford Mitchel spends time hiking, skiing, and can be found in the mountains driving, then repairing his classic Ford Mustang.

Dr. Parikh is cardiologist specializing in the care of patients with inherited cardiovascular diseases. She completed clinical cardiology fellowship at Stanford School of Medicine and her medical residency at the University of California, San Francisco. Funded by research grant from the NIH, she currently studies multiple causes of cardiomyopathy in the laboratory. She has a particular clinical and scientific interest in inherited arrhythmogenic cardiomyopathies, which are an increasingly recognized disease entity. Dr. Parikh is currently using patient cohort genetics, high throughput molecular biology and human induced pluripotent stem cell derived cardiomyocytes to study variant pathogenicity in RBM20 cardiomyopathy.

Audrey Schlachter

After attending Cal Poly SLO for a degree in Psychology, Audrey stumbled upon the field of genetic counseling after watching the riveting show 90210. She was fortunate enough to interview inspiring genetic counselors throughout the country and was graciously given an opportunity to volunteer with the genetic counselors in SCICD. This led to her current role as Data Aid for the Ashley Lab. When she is not typing away at her computer or shadowing every care team professional, she is usually found studying for grad school or practicing inversions at a yoga studio.

Shirley Sutton

Shirley received her BA in Physics from UC Irvine and her Masters in Biology from Stanford. She worked for 15 years in the James Spudich Lab in the Dept. of Biochemistry at Stanford, where she became proficient in molecular biology and protein purification techniques. When that lab downsized, she joined the Bustamante Lab in the Genetics Dept. at Stanford, where she learned how to purify genomic DNA from a variety of sample sources, how to make DNA sequencing libraries from the purified genomic DNA and how to "capture" specific parts of the genome for sequencing.

While working for the Biochemistry Dept, she studied the causes of human cardiac disease, specifically how certain single point mutations in the human cardiac myosin gene (MYH7) can alter the in vitro function of MYH7. The clinical observation that two people with the same MYH7 mutation can have vastly different disease manifestation and progression sparked her interest in the field of personalized medicine and how one's complete genetic profile could be used to tailor drug treatments for cardiac diseases and other diseases, such as cancer. Besides managing the Ashley Lab wet lab, she hopes to apply her skill set to the study of the genomic DNA of patients with heart disease in an effort to understand how and why which MYH7 mutations will make someone sick and which will not.

Matthew Wheeler

Dr. Wheeler is an Instructor in the Division of Cardiovascular Medicine. His areas of clinical expertise include inherited and infiltrative cardiomyopathies, neuromuscular disease associated cardiomyopathy, and mechanical circulatory support. His clinical research interests include investigating novel therapies for cardiomyopathy, including participation in multi-center randomized trials for cardiac amyloidosis, hypertrophic cardiomyopathy, and mechanical circulatory support. He is the adult clinical lead and executive director of the Undiagnosed Diseases Clinical Site at Stanford, one of seven NIH-funded clinical sites of the Undiagnosed Diseases Network. In partnership with Dr. Francois Haddad, he is evaluating immune system dynamics in dilated cardiomyopathy and dystrophin-deficiency mediated cardiomyopathy. He is involved in several additional ongoing initiatives in cardiovascular genomics and genetics, including a study of microRNAs and DNA methylation and risk of atherosclerosis in the Women's Health Initiative. His prior work includes research on cost effectiveness of athlete screening, clinical interpretation of whole genome sequencing, and investigating exercise training in patients with hypertrophic cardiomyopathy. In addition, he maintains active computational and basic research interests, with the goal of improving diagnosis and treatment options for patients with cardiomyopathy by leveraging next-generation sequencing technologies, rich bioinformatics datasets, and bench research in model systems of inherited cardiomyopathy. He is supervised by Dr. Euan Ashley and has collaborations with researchers across the School of Medicine and the University. Originally from upstate New York, Dr. Wheeler attended Williams College to study biology/physiology and history/foreign relations, while minoring in crew. He then completed his MD and PhD at the University of Chicago. In 2005 he came to Stanford for his postgraduate training in internal medicine, general cardiology, prevention research, cardiovascular genetics, and advanced heart failure, mechanical circulatory support and heart transplantation. He enjoys spending his free time biking, hiking, swimming and snow sports with his wife and sons.

Brooke Zelnik

Brooke is the Ashley Lab Administrative Associate and handles the Visiting Appointments in the Division of Cardiovascular Medicine. She graduated from San José State University with her Bachelor’s in Speech-Language Pathology, and is working towards attending Graduate school. In her free time, she likes to play with her puppy, Louey!

Chunli Zhao

Chunli received her PhD/DVM in Developmental Biology and Embryonic Engineering from the Institute of Zoology (IOZ, Beijing), Chinese Academy of Sciences (CAS), China in 2006. From 2006 to 2016, she worked as an Assistant Professor in IOZ, as a scientist in a stem cell company, and as a Research Associate in the Genetics Department/Cardiovascular Institute at Stanford University before joining the Ashley Lab.

Her major expertise is in stem cell research, including human iPSCs/ESCs derivation, iPSCs/ESCs differentiation and genome editing. She is also experienced in transgenic animal model generation, including animal cloning (somatic cell nuclear transfer), DNA injection, blastocyst injection and small animal surgery.

Her current work in the lab is in conjunction with the Stanford UDN project. She is in charge of iPSCs reprogramming and studies, as well as iPSCs related collaborated projects. She is also the lab manager for the Ashley Lab.