We are always interested in adding new team members including volunteers, graduate students and postdoctoral fellows within the limits of our current funding.

Current Members

Chad Hales, M.D., Ph.D.

Chad is an Associate Professor of Neurology at Emory University. He is the Clinical Director of the Cognitive Neurology Program, the Memory Assessment Center Core lead for the Georgia Memory Net, and active in the Goizueta Alzheimer’s Disease Research Center and CLinical Trials Unit at Executive Park. The laboratory is in the Center for Neurodegenerative Disease in the Whitehead Biomedical research building on Emory’s main campus.

Chad has post-doctoral training in biomedical engineering and cellular biology.

Chad is a board certified neurologist with subspecialty certification in Behavioral Neurology and Neuropsychiatry. He sees patients with all types of cognitive disorders in the Emory Cognitive Neurology Clinic.

James Webster B.S.

James is a lead research specialist who has developed a great repertoire of techniques and is instrumental in keeping the lab up and running. James has been with Emory for over 5 years.

Ashlyn Grace Johnson B.S.

Ashlyn is a graduate student in the Emory Neurosciences Graduate program. She joined us for a lab rotation in Winter 2018 and then decided to stay in the lab for her thesis work (May 2018). She is interested in astrocyte proteins that enrich in frontotemporal dementia due to MAPT mutations.


This is a list of a few of our current collaborators.

Thomas Kukar, Ph.D.

Thomas is a cellar biologist and medicinal chemist interested in understanding dysfunctional cellular mechanisms and therapies for various neurodegenerative disorders like Alzheimer’s disease and frontotemporal dementia.

James Lah, M.D., Ph.D.

Jim is a cognitive neurologist, molecular biologist, and mentor.

Allan I. Levey, M.D., Ph.D.

Allan is a cognitive neurologist, neuroscientist/neuroanatomist, and mentor.

Nicholas Seyfried, Ph.D.

Nick is a biochemist and we work closely with him, Eric Dammer and Duc Duoung in the Proteomics core for various experiments.

Thomas Wingo, M.D.

Thomas is interested in understanding the genetics of Alzheimer’s disease and related dementias.


Zohal Ghulam-Jelani

Zohal was in the Emory SURE program (Summer Undergraduate Research Program). She was working on culturing postmortem human neurons from autopsy research cases.

Mary Herrick B.S.

Mary was a rotating graduate student in the lab during spring 2016 and she is currently in the Emory neurosciences program working on her Ph.D. She conducted immunoprecipitations from human brain with the goal of pulling down the RNA processing factor SC-35 or SRSF2.

Phillip Price B.S.

Phillip was a rotating graduate student in the lab and he is currently in the Emory neurosciences program working on his Ph.D. He was working on developing genomic engineering protocols for the lab.

Ahmad Zeineddin M.D.

Ahmad was a volunteer medical student from the International American University in Saint Lucia. He has returned to medical school to complete his training and is now a general surgery resident in Washington D.C. .

Tre Kinney

Tre started as an undergraduate volunteer and then participated in the Emory 2016 SURE program and Emory IMSD program during the 2016-2017 school year.

Ronnie Li B.S.

Ronnie is a neurosciences graduate student who recently completed his first rotation in the lab during summer 2017. He was studying insoluble proteins associated with frontotemporal dementia due to MAPT mutations.

Nicholas Harbin B.S.

Nick is a molecular systems pharmacology student at Emory University. He was in the lab for a rotation during Winter 2018 and he worked on identifying important disease related proteins in CTE. He identified a G-protein coupled receptor that may be important for regulating tau processing at the synapse.

John Giuliano B.S.

Jon graduated in May 2018 from Emory after completing his honors thesis in the lab and graduating with highest honors. He is now a medical student at Duke University.

Rhythm Shah Ph.D.

Rhythm was a postdoctoral fellow from the University of Alabama. He was in the laboratory from in 2017 and 2018. His role was to characterize the CTE proteome and culture IPS cells for various assays.

Lauran Zeineddin B.S.

Lauran is a medial student at the Medical College of Georgia Athens campus and she joined Dr. Hales in the clinic for a project to optimize work flow and documentation.

Kate Heffernan B.S.

Kate is a graduate student in the Emory Neurosciences Graduate program. She worked on a project to understand if hyperexcitability of neurons on MEAs could generate secreted proteins that would contribute to tau aggregation.

Laura Gutierrez-Quiceno M.D.

Laura joined us in June 2018 as a postdoctoral fellow. She brings research experience from prior positions and she is working on the DOD project to characterize changes in the CTE proteome. In May 2020, she left the Hales lab to start medicine internship and neurology residency.

Taylor Pohl B.S.

Taylor graduated from Emory in May 2018 after volunteering in the lab for her senior project. She then stayed on as a research specialist and is working on the BrightFocus Foundation project to understand how RNA processing factors contribute to the aggregation of tau. She is interested in pursuing graduate studies in the future. In May 2019, she left the Hales lab for a position at Regeneron.

Austin Nuckols B.S., M.S.

Austin is an Emory Molecular Systems Pharmacology student who rotated in the lab during Winter 2018. He then decided to join the lab under co-mentorship with Thomas Kukar. His project is utilizing IPS cells and cortical spheroids to understand the function of progranulin. He completed his master’s thesis in 2022 and working in the private sector.