Student Research Opportunities

There are several ways that CUNY School of medicine students may acquire research experience:

  • Volunteer in a lab
  • Independent Study (Class Credit; minimum 3hrs/wk per credit)
  • Paid Fellowships
  • Undergrads who have completed first year with a GPA ≥ 3.0 are eligible

CUNY School of medicine students can gain research experience in:

  • Basic Science and Translational Medicine
  • Community Health and Social Medicine

Clinical research opportunities are also available during M1-M3 years through partnerships with Saint Barnabas Hospital and Staten Island University Hospital.

External Opportunities

This section has many opportunities available outside of Sophie Davis/CSOM for you to explore.  If you have questions about an opportunity including application release dates or deadlines, reach out to the contact person listed on their website to obtain more information. Some of the listed opportunities may have been cancelled for this year or postponed; please check back regularly on those sites for updates. Please click here to access these external opportunities. 

Student Protocol for Contacting Researchers 

If you are interested in conducting research with a CSOM faculty member, please follow the following steps. First, explore the list of projects below that describes the research in which CSOM faculty are engaged. Select your top two choices. Then, contact the faculty member directly by email. Be sure to write a professional email (Components of a Professional Email). Introduce yourself briefly, including where you are in your education and whether you have had any experience in conducting research (also, attach a polished CV as a PDF to your email). Explain why you are interested in the faculty member’s research. Ask the faculty member if she/he is accepting any CSOM students at the moment and if so, request an appointment to speak with the faculty member directly about the possibility of doing research with her/him. Schedule an appointment. Go to your meeting prepared: read the literature about the topic and be sure to read any papers that faculty member has published. Also, develop a list of questions, including questions about specifically what you would be doing, goals and expectations, and whether you might have the opportunity to publish. If you have any concerns or questions regarding each step of this protocol (developing and polishing your CV, crafting a professional email, finding articles in the literature, or just wanting to talk about the possibility of research), please set up an appointment with Dr. Lisa Coico.

CV Research Medical Students

Research Interests of CSOM Faculty

1. Tashuna Albritton: CHASM: ;  Dr. Albritton is interested in adolescent sexual behaviors and STD/HIV prevention intervention. Her work includes behavioral and bio-medical risk reduction research primarily among underrepresented minority populations.

2. Keosha T. Bond: CHASM: ; Dr. Bond is a Behavioral Scientist and Sexual Health Educator who has centered her work on the complex intersections of race, sexuality, social justice, and health disparities among individuals of marginalized genders. Dr. Bond’s primary research interests have focused on understanding how socio-structural and cultural factors influence the transmission of HIV and using rigorous, formative research to develop culturally appropriate interventions to address these factors. Specifically, her work is focus on the exploration of the relationship between race, gender, and power imbalances in society increase vulnerability to sexually transmitted infections and sexual inequality among individuals marginalized genders.  Dr. Bond ‘s most recent work has concentrated on the development of innovative health education interventions using online technology and social media for a broad dissemination of behavior change interventions related to biomedical strategies such as pre- and post-exposure prophylaxis for both cisgender and transgender women of color.

3. Lisa Coico: MCBS: ; Dr. Coico is interested in burnout and suicide among students and physicians. 

4. Patricia Cortes: MCBS: ; Dr. Cortes studies the mechanisms of V(D)J recombination and non-homologous end joining (NHEJ) and dissects the etiology of human diseases related to these processes. V(D)J recombination and NHEJ are essential for the generation of antibodies, T cell receptors and to maintain genomic stability. Dr. Cortes is interested in proteins involved in DNA repair and VDJ recombination and their significance in certain immunodeficiency diseases and cancer.

5. Victoria Frye: CHASM: ; Dr. Frye's research combines epidemiological and social science theories and methods to document interrelations among multi-level determinants of intimate partner and sexual violence and HIV/AIDS. Based on observational research, she then designs and tests multi-level and multi-component prevention interventions using peer- and community-based approaches, with a focus on disrupting stigma and discrimination or related social processes.

6. Paul Gottlieb;  MCBS: ; Virus assembly and replication, and vaccine development for respiratory viruses and Zika.

7. Sanna Goyert: MCBS: ; Dr. Goyert is interested in the role of innate immune receptors in neurodegenerative diseases, identification and functional role of the interaction of innate immune receptors with endogenous ligands, and continuing studies of innate immune receptors in severe infection/septic shock.

8. Lice Ghilardi: MCBS: ; Lice’s research is about neuroplasticity mechanisms related to learning and memory formation relevant to motor control and visuospatial learning in normal subjects and patients with Parkinson’s Disease. She uses high density-EEG, behavioral tasks, MRI.

9. Lynn Hernandez: CHASM: ; Dr. Hernandez’s research interests focus on the development and implementation of community-based, culturally appropriate behavioral interventions for adolescents of color and their families. The long-term objective of her research activities is to reduce alcohol and other drug use and HIV-related health disparities affecting communities of color by developing easily accessible interventions that capitalize on culture specific protective factors and address structural healthcare inequities.

10. Khosrow Kashfi: MCBS: ; Dr. Kashfi is interested in,  1. Treatment and prevention of cancers of the colon, pancreas and ER-negative breast, using novel compounds such as dual nitric oxide and hydrogen sulfide donating NSAIDs and 2. Prevention of Familial Adenomatous Polyposis with gastrointestinaly safe sulindac.  

11. Junghoon Kim: MCBS: ; Dr. Kim's lab uses advanced neuroimaging and neuropsychological methods to investigate various neuro-rehabilitation issues in patients with traumatic brain injury. Current research topics include: 1) revealing the mechanisms of neuroplasticity during recovery and interventions (neuromodulation, psychoactive drugs, and cognitive training) and 2) identifying and validating novel biomarkers of injury.

12. Andreas Kottmann: MCBS: ; The Kottmann lab studies the regulation of structural plasticity in the basal ganglia and the spinal cord. They found that adjuvant dosing with agonists of the signal transduction pathway "Shh" avoids the formation of disabling dyskinesia in response to L-Dopa treatment in murine and monkey models of Parkinson's Disease. They now seek to test these findings in clinical trials. They are testing whether " Shh" signaling originating from a subset of motorneurons is involved in (1) motorneuron protection in models of amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS) and (2) in muscle repair upon injury.

13. Geri Kreitzer: MCBS:  gk%72e%69tzer@med.cun" rel="nofollow"> : Dr. Kreitzer is interested in how epithelial cells establish and maintain their distinctive polarized architecture and functions and how non-canonical activities of microtubule motor proteins modify transcriptional activity of nuclear receptors in the context of breast cancer metastasis, kidney function, and skeletal and cardiac muscle metabolism. She uses cell biological, biochemical and molecular approaches to gain mechanistic insight into these fundamental cellular processes.

14. Erica Lubetkin: CHASM: ; Health outcomes/health disparities, patient-reported outcomes/health-related quality of life, burden of disease due to modifiable behavioral risk factors, health literacy, and patient activation

Wenhua Lu: CHASM: ; Dr. Lu’s research spans three major areas: adolescent mental health and healthcare disparities in racial/ethnic minorities, childhood obesity prevention and interventions, and youth civic engagement. Her current research focuses on understanding and intervening on factors influencing professional service use among Asian American adolescents with mental and behavioral health problems (e.g., anxiety, depression, substance use). 

15. Jack Martin: MCBS: ; Dr. Martin’s lab studies repair of the damaged motor systems of the brain and spinal cord after spinal cord injury and stroke. They use animal models. Their approach is to stimulate the brain and spinal cord to activate neurons; this approach is termed neuromodulation. Their focus is to translate approaches that are effective in animal models to the human. They, collaborate with neurologists to optimize approaches for the human.

16. Itzhak Mano: MCBS: ; Dr. Mano is interested in molecular mechanisms of neuronal damage and neuroprotective signaling in excitotoxicity and brain ischemia  and mechanisms of neuronal communication and synaptic clearance in circuits that use the neurotransmitter glutamate, using a simple animal model (the nematode C. elegans).

17. Kaliris Salas-Ramirez: MCBS: ; Dr.  Salas-Ramirez studies interventions for cognitive decline as a result of drug exposure throughout different critical periods, with a particular focus on sex differences on efficacy. This drug exposure is either therapeutic, chemotherapy, illicit, cocaine.  She uses animal models to determine cognitive and emotional responses to both the drugs and interventions followed by neuroanatomical assessments to understand the effects on neural plasticity.

18. Nancy Sohler: CHASM: ; Opioid abuse management/treatment; medical cannabis; access to care/improvement in managing chronic diseases (diabetes and HIV) for underserved populations 

19. Amr Soliman: CHASM: ; Dr. Soliman does multidisciplinary research includes working with clinicians and oncologists to investigate the epidemiology of colorectal, cervical, and breast cancers and to translate cancer epidemiology into tailored cancer prevention and control interventions for underserved communities in Africa and diverse populations in the U.S.  

20. Linda Spatz: MCBS: ; Dr. Spatz’s laboratory focuses on the genetic & environmental factors that can trigger the production of anti-dsDNA antibodies which are the hallmark of Systemic Lupus Erythematosus.  She is interested in the role of molecular mimicry by pathogens such as EBV, in the etiology of lupus and autoimmunity.  She is currently studying structural similarities between some pathogen proteins and dsDNA, which may play a role in eliciting autoantibodies.

21. Gonzalo Torres: MCBS:   Dr. Torres lab studies the molecular mechanisms used by neurons to regulate dopamine homeostasis and the role of the gut microbiota in the regulation of the brain dopamine system. Current projects include: 1) the regulation of the dopamine transporter by G proteins, and 2) the role of the gut microbiota in dopamine neuron vulnerability and function

22. Ashiwel Undieh: MCBS: ; Dopamine-regulated signaling systems and epigenetic mechanisms in the pathophysiology and treatment of addiction and depression; pharmacologic approaches to spinal cord injury therapy.

23. Hoau-Yan Wang: MCBS: ; Dr. Wang is interested in age-dependent alteration in neuronal function, pathogenic mechanisms and therapeutic targets for neurodegeneration in Alzheimer’s disease and in  neuropsychiatric disorders with particular emphasis on bipolar affective disorder and schizophrenia, and discovery of novel therapeutic agents and diagnostic biomarkers for neurodegenerative and psychiatric disorders as well as traumatic brain injury.

24. Jun Yoshioka: MCBS: ; Dr. Yoshioka’s lab is interested in the effects of cellular stresses on metabolism such as oxidative stress, hypoxia/ischemia, and/or hyperglycemia/lipidemia Specifically, he focuses on characterizing cardiovascular phenotypes in mouse models of metabolic disorders.