Past Lab Members


Nicole A Braun, PhD

Nicole successfully defended her PhD thesis in 2011. She was a postdoctoral fellow in the laboratory of Dr. Wonder Drake, Vanderbilt University, for two years before taking a research position for the state of Tennessee.


Roman Covarrubias, PhD

Roman successfully defended his thesis in spring of 2015 and is now a postdoctoral fellow in the Laboratory of Dr. Richard Gumina in the Division of Cardiovascular Medicine at Vanderbilt University.

Dr. Curtis Gabriel""

Curtis L. Gabriel, MD, PhD

Curt earned his PhD in the Major lab in 2012 and graduated from Medical School in spring 2014. He is currently an fellow in the Division of Gastroenterology, Hepatology and Nutrition at Vanderbilt University

Yanice V. Mendez-Fernandez, PhD

Yanice earned her PhD from the Mayo Clinic with Dr. Larry Pease. She was a member of the Major Lab from 2009-2012. Yanice is currently an Assistant Professor in the Biology Department at Trevecca Nazarene University, Nashville, TN.


Sander van Leuven, MD, PhD

Sander spent a year in the Major Lab studying the effects of statins on lupus-accelerated atherosclerosis. He earned his M.D., PhD at the University of Amsterdam and is currently a Clinical Lecturer in Rheumatology at King’s College in London, UK.


Nekeithia S. Wade, PhD

Nekeithia earned her PhD in 2012. She was a postdoctoral fellow in the laboratory of Dr. Loren D. Erickson at the University of Virginia, Charlottesville, VA.  Nekeithia is currently working for the U.S. Department of Defense.


Ashley Wilhelm, PhD

Ashley was a postdoctoral fellow in the lab from 2010 to 2016. She recently left to supervise a clinical flow cytometry facility in Winston Salem, NC. Ashley was born in NC and she is excited to start this new chapter in her career in her home state.