Lab Members

Heather Hollis Durai – Research Assistant

Heather is a graduate of Austin Peay and the “lab glue” (or is that goo?). She is probably the only one who can find that last box of parafilm… Heather keeps the PI in line, does a lot of biochemistry, hates fluorescent in situs. She used to be a referee for the Nashville Rollergirls - which came in handy for any lab bickering.  She has previously been described as someone's "lab hero", although we are not sure that person was entirely sane.

 Dr. Devon Graham - Postdoc

Devon hails from Pittsburgh PA and has brought with her a love for the word “yunz” (which we still prefer to “y’all”), all things Steelers, and all things pickled. She is a toxicologist and behavioral pharmacologist and is working on the regulation of dendritogenesis and interneuron differentiation.  We just wish she wouldn't be so enthusiastic all the time.


Kelli Money - Grad Student

Kelli is an MD/PhD student in the Neuroscience Graduate Group working on how D1 receptors help shape neurodevelopment of the frontal cortex and striatum.  She's is first half of the Alabama connection in the lab.... gulp!  But we like her anyway.


 Emily Ross Jones -  Grad Student

Emily is from Huntsville and completes the Alabama theme in our current PhD students.  Emily has a MS in Chemistry and is in our Chemical and Physical Biology program.  She is working on a project identifying the mechanisms through which prenatal cocaine exposure disrupts forebrain development.  She appears to be always happy.  We are striving to fix this.


Mary Akel - Research Assistant

Mary may not be quite this young anymore, but she's definitely still a cub.  She's getting her feet wet with mousies and experiments and trying to decide between a life of research and a real career.  She's a Nashville native and recently returned after getting her BA at Emory University in Atlanta.  She has calm and gentle hobbies.


Welcome also to returning Vanderbilt Undergraduates Michelle Chapman and Jamie Garden and newbies Vanessa Fuentes and Logan Johnston who have agreed to help and be tortured by us for the upcoming academic year!


Lab Alums:

Aliya Frederick

Aliya couldn’t decide between an MD and PhD so she decided to go for both! Aliya is a graduate of the Univ. of Maryland, recently finished her PhD with us and is now back in Med School.  Aliya worked on functionally selective signaling of the dopamine D1 receptor, using a mix of behavioral and biochemical techniques.  aliya.l.frederick@Vanderbilt.Edu

Rebecca Bluett

Becca worked with us during her undergrad times but left us for the sultry and smart Dr. Sachin Patel for her PhD work.  She still comes by from time to time, but we are mostly dead to her.

Matt Buendia

Matt “Babyface” Buendia hailed from Chattanooga and managed our colonies, genotyped galore and navigated pretty much every collaboration that Gregg couldn't say "no" to.. He is now a med student at UT and misses us all very,very much.

Stacey Robinson

Stacey was an RA in our Conte Center Biobehavioral core before heading out to join a PI with one of the best surnames in science - Dr. Brian McCool - to work on one of her favorite pasttimes - alcohol :-)