Meet The Writers

Elena Blanco-Suarez (@westboundsigned | @neurocosas | posts) is a postdoc in Nicola Allen’s molecular neurobiology lab at the Salk Institute. She studies astrocytic-secreted factors involved in the formation of synapses, their mechanisms of release and regulation. She also collaborates in Science Education Outreach programs in the Salk Institute and Fleet Science Center in San Diego.


Christian Cazares (@fleabrained | posts) is a 2nd year Neurosciences graduate student at UC San Diego. A native from Mexicali, Baja California, Mexico, Christian spends his time outside of the lab playing video-games, watching sports, and putting together events for Colors of the Brain. Check out his personal website, and reach him at Twitter. Cal alumnus. Go Bears.


James Howe (posts) is a graduate student in neuroscience at UCSD. He is interested in how learning and memory emerges from neurons. When not in lab, he enjoys reading, listening to R&B, watching sports, taking long walks on the beach at sunset, and clichés.


Samantha Jones (@jonesfreelance | web | posts) is a PhD student in UCSD’s Biomedical Sciences program, studying the role of RNA decay in neural development. When not in lab, you can find her writing, teaching yoga, and spending time outside appreciating the beautiful San Diego weather. Sam is working toward a future in science journalism with the goal of increasing public science literacy through education and conversation.


Megan Kirchgessner (@liz_lemniscusposts) is a UCSD Neurosciences PhD student in the Callaway Lab at the Salk Institute, using the visual cortex of the mouse to study neural circuits in vivo and their relation to behavior. Outside of neuroscience, she enjoys running, music, San Diego craft beer, watching movies (both good and “bad”), and stalking the La Jolla Cove sea lions.


Jarrett Lovelett (@unClogSci | posts) is a PhD student in the Psychology department at UCSD. He splits his time between Hal Pasher’s and Tim Rickard’s labs, where he focuses on understanding the factors that contribute to robust, flexible, and long-lasting human memory. He escapes from the lab and flees to the ocean, desert, and mountains as often as possible.


Ethan McBride (@egmcb | posts) is a UCSD Neurosciences graduate student in the Callaway Lab at the Salk Institute. He is fascinated by the neural basis of behavior, and is currently investigating the neural circuits underlying attention. Outside of the lab, Ethan enjoys playing the trumpet and piano, trying out new San Diego beers, watching various sportsball games (mostly foot and base), and occasionally trying to get into twitter.


Catie Profaci (@cprofaciposts) is a neuroscience PhD student studying the blood-brain barrier in Dr. Richard Daneman’s lab. Aside from the brain, her passions include running, wine, baseball, spicy food, traveling, New York Magazine, cheese, NPR, and Bruce Springsteen.


Drew Schreiner (posts) is a graduate student in the Psychology department at UCSD studying the neural circuits that underlie actions and decision-making with Dr. Christina Gremel.  When not shining lasers into the brains of mice, he can be found backpacking, hiking, and playing guitar.


Caroline Sferrazza (@csfrazzposts) is a PhD student in the UCSD Neurosciences graduate program. In Lawrence Goldstein’s lab at the Sanford Consortium for Regenerative Medicine, she uses human induced pluripotent stem cells to study Alzheimer’s Disease. She is the director of the UCSD Neuroscience Outreach Program and serves on the organizing committees for local #scicomm festivals and workshops, including Taste of Science and ComSciCon. She enjoys long nights gazing into the desert sky and confusing strangers by taking her mischievous kitten wherever possible.


Barbara Spencer (@barbara_spencerposts) is a UCSD Neuroscience Ph.D. student in the Brewer lab. Her research interests include using magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) to study how alterations in memory-related brain structures can be used to predict risk for Alzheimer’s disease and understanding how genes contribute to these changes. Outside of lab she can be found with her PALS, practicing yoga, baking, or rooting for the Philadelphia Flyers.


Melissa Troyer (@brain_gal web posts) is a Cognitive Science graduate student in the Kutas lab using electrophysiological (EEG) and behavioral methods to study language and memory.


Margot Wohl (@RadScientistPod | posts) is a neuroscience grad student working in a Kenta Asahina’s lab at the Salk institute. Her research centers on how brain cells and the molecules they exchange give rise to aggressive behaviors in fruit flies.  She also produces the KPBS “Rad Scientist” podcast that features the most tubular researchers of San Diego.

Where are they now?! NeuWrite Alumni!

Cailey Bromer (@cbromes | webposts)

Melissa Galinato (@omneuron | webposts)

Rose Hendricks (@rohendricks | webposts) is a Researcher at the FrameWorks Institute, a communications think tank in Washington, D.C. She is also a member of the ComSciCon Leadership Team. ComSciCon is a series of science communication workshops around the United States developed by graduate students, for graduate students. Rose earned her Ph.D. in Cognitive Science at UCSD in 2017.

Kerin Higa (@kkiritah | posts) is a Scientific Writer/Editor at City of Hope clinical research center, where she tries to drink 96oz of warm water every day. Kerin earned her Ph.D in Neurosciences from UCSD in 2017. Ashley J. usually writes Kerin’s bios, so go ask her for more information!

Ashley Juavinett (@ashleyjthinks | webposts)

Melissa Lau (@hellomlau | webposts)

Andy Peters (@flickerfusion | posts)

Emilie Reas (@etreas | posts)

Maya Sapiurka (@ppyajunebug | posts)

Rachel Tsunemoto (@rtsunemoto | posts) is a graduate of UCSD’s Neuroscience Graduate Program and interested in communicating science through illustration and animation.  Keep an eye out for her science-related designs and writings on her website.

Elena Vicario (@evicarioorri posts)


Other NeuWrite contributors:

Matt Boisvert (posts) 

Ben Cipollini (@mrquickowl | web posts) 

Erik Kaestner (webposts)

Jason Keller (posts)

Jared Smith (@drjaredbsmith | posts)


We’re always open to new members! If you’re interested in science writing and would like to get involved in our group, please contact us!

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