Principal Investigator

Susan Kaech

Professor and Director
Nomis Center for Immunobiology and Microbial Pathogenesis
Nomis Foundation Chair

B.S. Cellular and Molecular Biology, University of Washington
Ph.D. Developmental Biology, Stanford University

The West coast is the best coast. I love spending time outside under the California sun, whether on a hike or while enjoying the sunset with a nice glass of wine. It is even better when I can do it with my loving family and friends. I also enjoy multicolor flow cytometry and cooking.
Staff Scientist

Cris Chisholm

Staff Scientist

Research Associates

Hokyung “Kay” Chung

Research Associate

B.S. Pharmacy, Seoul National University Ph.D. Biology, Stanford University

Kay focuses on how CD8+ T cell states are determined by their internal (transcription factors) and external (environmental cues) programmers to design “smarter” T cells. Outside of the lab, she enjoys walking her dog Oli and exploring the best coffee roasters in San Diego.


Anna-Maria Globig

Research Associate

MD University of Freiburg

Anna aims to understand how the function of T cells can be metabolically manipulated in the context of different autoimmune diseases and in T cell exhaustion. Outside of lab, she enjoys exploring the Californian outdoors.

Andrew Hildreth

Research Associate

Irene Lopez Gutierrez

Research Associate


Shixin Ma

Research Associate

B.S. Bioscience and Technology, Yangzhou University
Ph.D. Immunology, Institut Pasteur of Shanghai

Shixin is focusing on the metabolic influence on the epigenetic landscape of CD8+ T cells within the tumor microenvironment. She enjoys traveling during her free time.

Tom Mann

Research Associate

B.S. Chemistry, Bucknell University
Ph.D. Biochemistry, Stanford University

Tom is studying the dynamics of intracellular calcium signaling in T cell exhaustion. Outside of lab, he enjoys board games, juggling, and tennis.

Karthik Varanasi

Research Associate

B.Sc. Biotechnology, Osmania University
M.Sc. Biotechnology, Vellore Institute of Technology
Ph.D. Genome Science and Technology, University of Tennessee

“Change brings faster results than chance.” My research focuses on how immune cells change their metabolism within different tissues to fit the local environment to stay functional.
Research Assistants

Timothy Chen

Research Assistant


Jesse Furguiele

Research Assistant


Michael LaPorte

Research Assistant

Ming Sun

Ming Sun

Research Assistant

Graduate Students
Lizmarie Garcia-Rivera

Lizmarie Garcia-Rivera

Graduate Student


Jessica Roginsky

Graduate Student


Stephen Sakuma

Graduate Student


Brian Stack

Graduate Student


Ziyan Xu

Graduate Student, University of California, San Diego

B.S. Fudan University

Zoe’s interested in understanding the tumor microenvironment, especially the correlation between metabolic changes and functionality in immune cells. She enjoys spending time with her dog Tinkerbell in her spare time.
Lab Technicians
Emma Cohen

Emma Cohen

Lab Technician


Hannah Knox



Emily Jacobs


Lab Coordinator

Victoria Tripple

Lab Coordinator

B.S. Human Biology, University of California, San Diego
B.A. Psychology, University of California, San Diego

Victoria currently manages the Kaech Lab and also works on in vivo cancer models and infiltrating immune cells. In her spare time, she enjoys taking her son to the zoo and the beach.