Lab Members

Henry L. Paulson, MD, PhD

Lucille Groff Professor of Neurology

Phone: 734.615.5632Email:

Henry L. Paulson, MD, PhD, is the Lucile Groff Professor of Neurology for Alzheimer’s Disease and Related Disorders in the Department of Neurology at the University of Michigan and a Taubman Scholar in the A. Alfred Taubman Medical Research Institute. Dr. Paulson joined the U-M faculty in 2007, where he directs the programs in degenerative brain diseases and the Michigan Alzheimer’s Disease Center. Dr. Paulson received his MD and PhD from Yale University in 1990, then completed a neurology residency and neurogenetics/movement disorders fellowships at the University of Pennsylvania. From 1997 to 2007, he was on the faculty at the University of Iowa. Dr. Paulson’s research interests concern the causes and treatment of age-related neurodegenerative diseases, with an emphasis on Alzheimer’s disease and other dementias, hereditary ataxia, and polyglutamine diseases. Dr. Paulson serves on the scientific advisory boards of numerous disease-related national organizations, and is past Chairperson of the Board of Scientific Counselors at the National Institute for Neurological Disorders and Stroke at the National Institutes of Health.

Lisa M. Sharkey, Ph.D.

Assistant Research Professor
Dr. Sharkey completed her Ph.D in Neuroscience at the University of Wisconsin-Madison. She has completed 2 postdoctoral fellowships studying the molecular mechanisms of neurological disease at the Scripps Research Institute in La Jolla, CA, Department of Molecular and Cellular Neuroscience, and at the University of Michigan in the Department of Human Genetics. In her current position in Dr. Paulson's laboratory she is interested in studying the mechanisms of neurodegeneration underlying two common forms of dementia: Alzheimer's Disease and Frontotemporal Dementia (FTD). Ubiquillin2 (Ub2) is a member of a family of proteins containing ubiquitin-like domains that has been implicated in the trafficking of proteins tagged for degradation to the proteasome. Mutations in Ub2 have been shown to cause FTD and Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis (ALS). In order to investigate the function of this poorly understood protein, Dr. Sharkey has developed transgenic mouse lines expressing WT and mutant forms of Ub2. Her goal is to use these mice to understand the cellular role of Ub2 in protein quality control both in health and disease states.

Julia Gerson, Ph.D.

Postdoctoral fellow
Julia completed her doctoral studies in 2016 at the University of Texas Medical Branch where she studied tau oligomer structures in neurodegenerative disease and evaluated the efficacy of immunotherapy against oligomeric tau in mouse models. In the Paulson lab, Julia investigates the role of protein quality control protein, UBQLN2, in regulating tau and other common aggregating proteins in neurodegenerative disease.

Hanna Trzeciakiewicz, Ph.D.

Postdoctoral fellow

Hanna became a member of the Paulson lab in June 2020 and a trainee in the Neurology Department Training Grant (T32). It is her goal to uncover nonconventional molecular mechanisms associated with neurodegeneration, by investigating tau protein post-translational modifications and degradation pathways. She began conducting research on tau at Oakland University, where she received a BSc in Biochemistry. Hanna continued to study the tau protein at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, where she was awarded with a National Science Foundation Graduate Research Fellowship and received a PhD in Biochemistry and Biophysics. When not investigating many facets of tau protein biochemistry, Hanna enjoys exploring, experimenting in the kitchen, and taking long walks with her Yorkshire terrier.

Stephanie Sandoval-Pistorius, MS

Graduate Student
Steph is a PhD candidate in the Neuroscience Graduate Program. She received her B.S. and M.S. degrees in Neuroscience from Brigham Young University where she studied the role of connexin-36 gap junction in reward. Steph joined the Paulson lab in June of 2018 where she investigates the role of the protein quality control protein, Ubiquilin-2, in synucleinopathies.

Harihar Milaganur Mohan, MS

Graduate Student
Hari is a PhD precandidate in the Cellular and Molecular Biology Program. He obtained his undergraduate degree from SASTRA University (India) and his Master’s from the University of Michigan, where he worked on alpha-1-antitrypsin deficiency. At the Paulson lab, he seeks to understand the molecular mechanisms of ubiquilin biology beyond proteasomal shuttling, in particular during cellular stress. Outside of lab, Hari enjoys running, playing soccer and cooking.

Svetlana Fischer, MS

Research Laboratory Specialist/Lab Manager
Svetlana received her Master of Science in Biology degree from Tomsk State University in Russia. She joined the Paulson lab in August 2009. Since then she has been working on different research projects studying neurodegenerative processes in the brain. She combines her research studies with laboratory management.

Emily Crowley, MS

Research Assistant
Emily joined the lab in the spring of 2018. She graduated from the University of Michigan with a BS in Neuroscience and Spanish and an MS in Physiology. When not in the lab, Emily enjoys cycling, trying new recipes, and spending time with her goldendoodle.

Current Undergraduate Students

Nyjerus Lavondai Onijar Liggans

Kulin Oak

Aleija Leon Rodriguez

Jaimie Hojung Ryou

Kylie Schache