Principal Investigator

Sabrina Leigh Spencer

Sabrina Leigh Spencer

Assistant Professor
Sabrina earned her PhD in Computational and Systems Biology from MIT in 2009. During her PhD, she worked in Peter Sorger's lab on non-genetic origins of cell-to-cell variability in apoptosis. She then pursued postdoctoral studies in Tobias Meyer's lab at Stanford University where she explored the molecular basis of the restriction point using live-cell microscopy. In August 2014, Sabrina became an Assistant Professor at the University of Colorado - Boulder. In 2016, Sabrina was named a Searle Scholar, a Kimmel Scholar, a Beckman Young Investigator, a Boettcher Early Career Investigator and in 2017, a Pew-Stewart Scholar.

Postdoctoral Research Associates

Mansi Arora

Mansi Arora

September 2014 - Present
Mansi obtained her PhD at The Ohio State University in May 2014. For her graduate work, she examined the role of chromatin-associated ubiquitination in propagating transcriptional memory through mitosis. Her work resulted in the identification of a novel gene bookmarking mechanism that occurs via ubiquitination of chromatin-associated proteins. For her postdoctoral work, Mansi is studying the single-cell variability in cellular response to various stress stimuli.

Mingwei Min

January 2016 - Present
Mingwei did her PhD with Dr. Cath Lindon at the University of Cambridge, UK. She studied protein degradation when cells finish division and start to build new daughter cells. She has been fascinated with single cell biology since then. She recently studied the biochemistry of red cell differentiation at Harvard Medical School with Dr. Dan Finley.

Chengzhe Tian

June 2017 - Present
Chengzhe received his PhD in Biophysics at Niels Bohr Institute, University of Copenhagen in 2017. He joined the Spencer Lab in June 2017 to develop mathematical models as well as to learn more about experimental biology.

Lab Manager


Alexandra Holland

September 2016 - Present
Alexandra received her PhD in Chemical Engineering from the University of Washington, Seattle, in 2007 with an emphasis in Microbiology. In the Spencer lab, Alexandra is currently expanding her knowledge base to eukaryotic cell cycle and cancer metabolisms in addition to Matlab-based image analysis.

Data Scientist

Andrew Weekley

Andrew Weekley

June 2016 - Present
Andrew received his Bachelor of Arts degree in Physics and Mathematics at CU Boulder in 1990. Andrew has worked at Raytheon (formerly Hughes Aircraft), the National Center for Atmospheric Research and the National Renewable Energy Lab. Andrew’s work includes image segmentation and time-series analysis.

Graduate Students


Justin Moser

Biochemistry Graduate Student • May 2015 - Present
Justin received his Bachelor of Arts in Chemistry with an emphasis in Biochemistry from Pomona College in May 2011. He worked as a research technician in a structural biology lab at Caltech for three years before entering the Biochemistry program at CU Boulder. He joined the Spencer lab in May 2015.
Yao Rong

Yao Rong

MCDB Graduate Student • May 2017 - present
Yao Rong is a first year student in the MCDB department. Yao obtained her Master of Engineering with an emphasis in Glycobiology at Jiangnan University, China, in June 2016. She studied the regulatory mechanisms of GPI-inositol deacylation of GPI-anchored proteins (GPI-APs) in endoplasmic reticulum (ER) in Morihisa Fujita and Xiaodong Gao's lab. She joined the Spencer lab in May 2017.
Chen crop

Chen Yang

MCDB Graduate Student • May 2015 - Present
Chen received her Master of Science in Microbial and Cellular Biology at Emporia State University in May 2014. During her graduate studies, she explored the numerous bioactivities of Oleanolic Acid (a phytochemical) and microRNA-26a and let-7a on human melanoma cells: cytotoxicity, apoptosis and autophagy induction, cell motility reduction, and cell cycle arrest. Chen became a graduate student for the Spencer lab in May of 2015.

Medical Student

Iain Miller

Iain Miller

January 2017 - current • August 2015 - June 2016
Iain received his Bachelor of Arts in May of 2015 from the University of Colorado Summa Cum Laude in Biochemistry and with distinction in Mathematics. His undergraduate thesis was completed in the Falke Lab at the University of Colorado. Iain became a lab technician for the Spencer lab in August of 2015. Currently a medical student at the University of Colorado School of Medicine - August 2016


Dylan Carter

Dylan Carter

Professional Research Associate • October 2014 - August 2015
Dylan received his Bachelor of Science in Biological Sciences from the University of Nebraska-Lincoln in May of 2014. During his undergraduate studies, Dylan was involved in research in a number of laboratories at both the University of Nebraska and at the University of Oregon. Dylan became a lab technician for the Spencer lab in October of 2014. Currently a PhD student in MCB at UC Berkeley - August 2015
Sara Gookin

Sara Gookin

Lab Manager • September 2014 - August 2016
Sara received her Bachelor of Science in Biomedical Engineering at Michigan Technological University in May 2008. She worked at Colorado State University since 2008 as a research associate in various laboratories. Sara became the lab manager for the Spencer Lab in September 2014. Sara is now a Professional Research Assistant at University of Colorado Denver.

Harsha Phadke

May 2015 - July 2016
Harsha received her Bachelor of Engineering in Electronics & Telecommunication at Mumbai University in June 2012 and a M.S in Electrical Computer & Energy Engineering from the University of Colorado, Boulder in August 2016. She worked as a programmer for Spencer lab helping with Image Processing & Signal Processing. She is currently working at MathWorks.