The Team

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Lori Burrows, Principal Investigator


Professor Lori Burrows is a microbiologist, Fellow of the American Academy of Microbiology, and international expert on the structure, function, and regulation of type IV pili (T4P). She has published over 120 peer reviewed papers, reviews, and book chapters. She is currently the Interim Director of McMaster University’s Michael G. DeGroote Institute for Infectious Diseases Research and serves on the Editorial Boards of the Journal of Bacteriology (ASM), the Journal of Biochemistry (ASBMB), and ACS Infectious Diseases. 

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Derek Chuk-Kin Chan, PhD Candidate

Derek completed a BSc at the University of Waterloo in biochemistry and worked co-op positions at Apotex looking for drug candidates to treat Parkinson’s disease. He joined the Burrows Lab in 2018 and is studying how thiopeptide antibiotics cross the outer membrane of Pseudomonas aeruginosa and is using biofilm stimulation as a proxy to look for new antimicrobials.

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Victoria Coles, PhD Candidate

Victoria completed her BSc at McMaster University in the Integrated Science (Biochemistry concentration) program before joining the Burrows Lab as a Master's student in 2019 and transfering to the PhD program in 2020. Her research involves using the biofilm stimulation phenotype to identify novel antibiotics and anti-biofilm agents to treat multi-drug resistant infections.

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Luke Yaeger, PhD Candidate

Luke joined the lab in 2017 for an undergraduate thesis and continued onto grad school where he is now studying antibiotic stress and biofilms, peptidoglycan metabolism, and how P. aeruginosa gets around. He competed for McMaster's varsity Track and Field team and continues to run. In 2020, Luke became a Wilson Leader and he used to the program to develop a model for a publicly owned pharmaceutical company in Canada. He is now a Braley Fellow. Luke's interests include anthropology, horticulture, political economy, volleyball, cooking, and brewing.


Rebecca Barnshaw, Masters Candidate

Rebecca (they/she) completed their BSc at the University of Guelph in microbiology before joining the Burrows lab in 2020 as a Master's student. Her research focuses on the motor complex of type IV pili used by many pathogenic bacteria.


Ikram Qaderi, Masters Candidate

Ikram joined the Burrows lab in 2020 as a GlycoNet summer student before starting his senior thesis in the fall. After completing his BHSc in the BDC program, Ikram was excited to continue his research in the Burrows lab as a MSc candidate. His research focuses on characterizing Type 4 major pilin accessory genes using various molecular biology techniques and pilus-specific bacteriophages.

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Veronica Tran, Masters Candidate

Veronica joined the Burrows lab in 2021 after completing her BSc in Biochemistry (Co-op) at McMaster University.  Her research involves analyzing genetic mutations that arise in Pseudomonas aeruginosa upon bacteriophage exposure.


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Katherine Dykema

Katherine is a third year biochemistry student interested in microbiology and antibiotic discovery. After beginning to volunteer in the lab over the summer, she is excited to continue to learn about hands-on research in these areas this academic year. Outside the lab, Katherine enjoys exploring nature, cooking, and spending time with friends

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Mahrukh Fatima

Mahrukh is a fourth year Biochemistry student completing her senior thesis in the Burrows Lab. As part of her senior thesis project, she is screening for antibiotics and natural products that can hijack TonB-dependent transporters under iron limiting conditions to permeate the outer membrane of Pseudomonas aeruginosa. Outside of the lab, Mahrukh enjoys volunteering at STEM outreach initiatives, baking, and sketching.


Alessio Giovannoni

Alessio is a fourth-year thesis student in the Biomedical Discovery and Commercialization program. He started in the Burrows Lab as a summer student working remotely to learn about the lab’s research and analyze past data. Alessio’s thesis project aims to characterize the role of the PA2200 gene in the Pseudomonas aeruginosa biofilm stimulation response. In his free time, Alessio likes being outside and enjoying nature.


Angela Yang

Angela is a fourth-year Biomedical Discovery and Commercialization student completing her senior thesis in the Burrows Lab. For her project, Angela is testing the iron affinity of previously identified biofilm inhibitors and conducting a screen to identify new iron-chelating biofilm inhibitors. She hopes to gain invaluable research experience and hone her writing and presentation skills. On days off, Angela enjoys spending time with her cat, learning languages, and drawing.

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Hanjeong Harvey, Lab Manager

Hanjeong has been the Burrows lab manager since 2006. She holds a MSc degree in Microbiology and is responsible for daily operations of the lab, safety, and training of new lab members. She helps with most of the projects in the lab in addition to working on isolation of type IV pilus-specific bacteriophages as research tools and potential therapeutics for antibiotic resistant bacteria. In 2018 she was awarded the Michael Kamin Hart Staff Award from the Michael G. DeGroote Institute of Infectious Disease Research in recognition of her ongoing commitment to excellence in research, training, and community.