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A Collaborative & Diverse Group

Click on a lab member to find out more about them!



Principal Investigator

Dr. LaBella has researched organisms from across the tree of life from deep-sea clams to humans. Her current research focuses on harnessing genomic patterns to extract new and exciting biological information. She has 2 dogs and 2 cats! She loves making crafts, playing disc golf, and gardening


Lauren Dineen

Postdoctoral Scholar

Lauren was awarded her PhD from the University of Manchester, UK where her research focused on the role of transfer RNA in pathogenicity and drug resistance in the human fungal pathogen, Aspergillus fumigatus. Lauren is new to Charlotte and enjoys going to her local brewery run club, and exploring Plaza Midwood.


Colin Speer

Master's Student

Colin is a second year Bioinformatics masters student at the University of North Carolina at Charlotte, holding a B.S. in computer science from the same institution. His research interests are utilizing machine learning and statistics to address challenges in cancer research. Beyond academics, Colin excels as a competitive Esports player, proudly representing the university in collegiate competitions. He also indulges in his passion for sports by avidly following hockey and Formula One.


Stella Lo


Stella has a B.A. in Computer Science from McGill University (Montréal, Québec) and is currently working full-time as a technical product manager. She is now dipping her toes into the world of bioinformatics and deciding if she wants to pursue higher education in this domain. Outside of work, she loves dancing ballet, reading, and wandering around the city. 


Sun Lee


 Sun is junior at Cannon School and very interested in researching fungi and plants. Outside of his fascination with science, he plays tennis, organizes service events and student events, and serves as a math tutor.


Aayu Kalaria

Undergraduate Researcher

Aayu is a junior student at UNC Charlotte, majoring in Computer Science with a concentration in Bioinformatics. Aayu is currently researching orthology and genetic annotations in budding yeasts. In her spare time, she enjoys dancing, cooking, and exploring new places. 


Sanjita Srinath

High School Research Volunteer

Sanjita is a senior in high school looking to major in biomedical engineering with a focus on computational biology and biostatistics in college. Outside of academics, she enjoys baking, robotics, and reading mystery novels




Bryan Zavala

Masters 2023

Bryan graduated with his Master’s in Bioinformatics at UNC Charlotte. He worked (and continues to work!) on a project characterizing codon usage in the budding yeasts. 


Tazkia Ahmed

Master's Student

Tazkia Ahmed is a first-year Master’s student in the Bioinformatics program. She received her B.S in Biotechnology from Brac University, Bangladesh where she studied the implications of non-coding RNAs in human diseases. Tazkia is interested in learning more about genetic variations in humans in relation to evolution. In her spare time, outside of work and academia, she loves traveling, singing, and hiking.

The LaBella Lab is currently looking for talented and motivated graduate students and postdocs. If you are interested please reach out to Dr. LaBella at alabell3 dot UNCC dot edu

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