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Rachel Roberts-Galbraith, PhD

Assistant Professor, Cellular Biology

Rachel grew up in rural Kentucky, where she collected planarians with her dad.  She earned a B.S. from Emory University, majoring in biology and minoring in religion.  She then completed her doctoral training at Vanderbilt University, working with Kathleen Gould to study cytokinesis in fission yeast.  Next, she moved to the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign and switched gears from fission yeast to fissioning worms.  Her postdoctoral research, in the lab of Phillip Newmark, focused on regeneration of the brain in Schmidtea mediterranea (our model planarian).  

In August 2017, Rachel launched her new laboratory in the Department of Cellular Biology at the University of Georgia (faculty website here).  She is a member of the Developmental Biology Alliance, the Regenerative Bioscience Center, and the Biomedical & Health Sciences Institute, where she is affiliated with the Neuroscience Program.  She accepts graduate students through the Integrated Life Sciences program.  

email: robertsgalbraith at

britessia smith

Research Technician

Originally from Athens, Georgia, Britessia returned to her hometown after receiving her B.S. in Neuroscience from Agnes Scott College. In addition to being a Research Technician at the University of Georgia, she is also a part-time student working toward her second degree in computer science. In her free time she enjoys drawing, meditating, building furniture and spending time with family.


jennifer jenkins

Graduate Student, Cellular Biology

Jennifer is a Cellular Biology graduate student who has a Bachelor's Degree from the College of Coastal Georgia.  She majored in Biological Sciences with a Coastal Ecology concentration. In her free time, she enjoys sports (both playing and watching) and fine arts (specifically theatre).

email: jennifer.jenkins at


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Yamini chavan

Undergraduate (Class of 2020), Cellular Biology

Yamini is a third-year undergraduate from Milton, GA and a cellular biology major. She plans to attend medical school to be an ob/gyn after graduation. Outside of the lab, she is a musician and plays the keyboard, flute, and alto saxophone. 

email: yamini.chavan25 at


Princess Dikko

Undergraduate (Class of 2020), Cellular Biology

Princess is a third-year cellular biology student from Marietta, GA with a minor in Japanese. Upon graduation, she hopes to continue research and apply to graduate school. Outside of the lab, she can be found playing guitar, painting, and hanging out with friends.

email: psd50775 at

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Alicia May

Undergraduate (Class of 2020), Biology

Alicia is a third-year biology major from Dublin, GA. She hopes to attend medical school to become an anesthesiologist. She enjoys shopping, singing, playing soccer and volleyball, and traveling. 

email: am47157 at


Jada Summerville 

Undergraduate (Class of 2020), Cellular Biology

Jada was born in Italy and raised in Virginia before moving to Georgia.  She is a third-year cellular biology major who plans to become an epidemiologist after attending medical school.  She spends most of her free time writing and reading comics or novels.

email: jada.summerville25 at

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Lauren thompson

Undergraduate (Class of 2020), Cellular Biology

Lauren is a third-year cellular biology student from Evans, Georgia. After she graduates, she hopes to attend medical school to become an orthopedic surgeon. In her free time, she likes to spend time outdoors doing things such as hiking and kayaking.

email: let61146 at

Previous lab members

Kathy Bui: Rotation Student Fall 2018
Bidushi (Tulip) Chandra: Rotation Student Fall 2018
Benjamin Luttinen: Rotation Student Fall 2018
Christina Sabin: Rotation Student Fall 2018
Mark (Christian) Adams: Undergraduate Research Spring 2018
Theresa Melendez: Rotation Student Fall 2017