Meet Our Trainees

Our MS and PhD candidates share details about their research and academic experiences with faculty in the Department of Cell & Molecular Medicine.

Postdoctoral fellows

Matthew J. Meagher’s postdoctoral research efforts are twofold: (1) investigation of the potential for non-destructive evaluation of bone implant contact (BIC) via micro-computed tomography (µCT) and (2) quantification of the predictive value of BIC and other cortical and trabecular bone structural indices, as measured by µCT, for orthopedic implant fixation strength.

Matthew J. Meagher, PhD

Meghan Moran, PhD

“I am currently a postdoctoral fellow and instructor in the Cell & Molecular Medicine Department at Rush University. My focus is bone regeneration and bone regeneration genetics research to identify the risk of poor bone repair based on genetic factors. Ultimately, I aim to develop novel means of identification and treatment of poor bone repair, with emphasis on bone-implant contact and osteolysis. This is different from my dissertation research, which focused on the ossification of the intervertebral discs during normal intervertebral fusion in cetaceans (whales, dolphins and porpoises) and terrestrial mammals. I also teach human gross anatomy in the Rush Medical College to first-year medical students.”

Meghan Moran, PhD

Graduate students

“I am a graduate student in the bioengineering department at the University of Illinois at Chicago and am conducting my dissertation research with Rick Sumner. The focus of my dissertation is the development of a simultaneous hard and soft tissue imaging technique with µCT to studying the material level characteristics and relationship between subchondral bone and articular cartilage in osteoarthritis rodent models. The joint collaboration between Rush University and UIC has opened up access to a great number of scientists as well as leading-edge technologies, which is truly a rewarding experience.”

Maleeha Mashiatulla, PhD Candidate

“I am currently working under Markus Wimmer on a project that combines both principles from tribology and from biology. Within my project, we are refining a cartilage testing model that better simulates in vivo joint motion. I am utilizing principles of engineering, applying them to a cartilage system and then measuring the outputs with biological methods. I found it to be such a unique project because of the interplay between the two areas that I transferred from being a master’s student to a PhD student. In addition to this, Rush has been such a great place that I interrupted my medical school training to complete this PhD.”

Robert Trevino, PhD Candidate

“I am a pre-doctoral student working in Dr. Maki’s lab. My research focuses on defining the relationship between p53, tetraploidization and chemotherapy resistance in osteosarcoma cells. I am only at the beginning of my career in academic research, and I hope to hear more and reach new heights. Here at Rush University surrounded by talented, knowledgeable professors, instructors and colleagues, I face endless opportunities. Whether in the lab, during rounds with friends, in classes and meetings, the resources available here are blended with our capabilities to help us contribute to the big name of science.”

Batzaya Davaadelger MS, PhD candidate

“My dissertation project involves using biomarkers for early detection of peri-implant osteolysis after primary total joint arthroplasty. The majority of my work will focus on our lab’s rat model of wear-particle induced peri-implant osteolysis, and will utilize diagnostic tools like ELISA and proteomics approaches such as two-dimensional gel electrophoresis and mass spectrometry to measure circulating biomarkers. The major objective of this work is to verify a biomarker panel for early diagnosis of peri-implant osteolysis, which may postpone the need for revision total joint arthroplasty and allow for non-surgical rescue of implant fixation.

I am originally from the southwest suburbs of Chicago and completed undergraduate studies at the University of Illinois at Chicago where I was awarded a Bachelor of Science in Biology with minor study of Kinesiology and a Bachelor of Art in Psychology. I began my graduate education at Rush University in the fall of 2012.”

Brittany Wilson