The Winkler Labs at Weill Cornell Medicine

Lab Team

Winkler lab August 2022


Winkler Lab Retreat 2022. Left to right: Elizaveta Motovilova, Tasmia Afrin, Mengying Zhang, Simone Angela Winkler, Shadeeb Hossain, Adrian Hoang, Mina Moghadam.

Winkler lab August 2021

Winkler lab August 2021

Left to right: Isabelle Saniour, Simone Angela Winkler, David Nghiem, Arthur Nghiem, Elizaveta Motovilova, Sayim Gökyar, Frida Galaviz Huerta, Rena Fukuda

Winkler lab May 2021

Winkler lab May 2021

Left to right: Isabelle Saniour, Elizaveta Motovilova, Simone Angela Winkler, Sayim Gökyar, Vishwas Mishra

Winkler Lab Group Photo

Winkler Lab Group Photo

Winkler Lab Group Photo February 2020. Left to right: Isabelle Saniour, Simone Angela Winkler, Sayim Gokyar, Elizaveta Motovilova

Primary Investigator

Prof. Simone Angela Winkler
Dr. Simone Angela Winkler
  • Assistant Professor of Electrical Engineering in Radiology
Research Focus:

Dr. Simone Winkler is a Stanford-trained NIH-funded biomedical researcher interested in studying three primary topics: (1) hardware development for MR engineering applications, (2) neurodegenerative disease diagnosis as well as the mapping of brain connectivity, (3) high-impact work at the interface of multi-physics and medicine, in the form of fundamental clinical and biological training in pediatric MRI. 

  • Postdoctoral Training: Stanford University
Phone: 212-746-2526

Lab Members

Kelly McCabe Gillen, PhD
Kelly McCabe Gillen , PhD
  • Instructor
Research Focus:

Kelly Gillen received her BS in Biological Engineering from Cornell University in 2004. She received her MS in Biomedical Engineering from Tufts University in 2006, and her PhD from the Weill Cornell Graduate School of Biomedical Sciences in 2014. While a graduate student at Cornell, Kelly conducted her PhD thesis research at Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center, where she received a fellowship from the Department of Defense Breast Cancer Research Program to investigate the role of Focal Adhesion Kinase in breast cancer initiation, progression, and metastasis. She has also conducted research projects at the Walter Reed Army Institute of Research and Boston Scientific. Kelly will receive her MBA and MS in Healthcare Leadership from Cornell University in May 2021. Her research interests include using imaging and histological techniques to understand the contribution of iron overload to neurodegenerative diseases such as Parkinson’s Disease and Alzheimer’s Disease.

  • BS, Cornell University
  • MS, Tufts University
  • PhD, Weill Cornell Medicine
  • MBA/MS, Cornell University
Elizaveta Motilova
Elizaveta Motovilova , PhD
  • Postdoctoral Research Fellow
Research Focus:

Elizaveta's main research interests include design and development of MRI RF coils, metamaterials and resonators for RF coil sensitivity improvement, ultra-high field MRI engineering and safety.

  • PhD: Singapore University of Technology and Design, Singapore
  • MSc, BSc: Moscow Institute of Physics and Technology, Russia
Nazish Murad
  • Postdoctoral Associate
Research Focus:

Nazish received her Ph.D. in Mechanical Engineering, focusing on breast cancer, from National Central University, Taiwan, in 2023. She received her MS in Applied Mathematics from Comsats University, Pakistan, in 2017. Her main areas of research are deep learning architecture design, statistical analysis, biomedical image reconstruction, and machine learning algorithms with applications in healthcare. During her Ph.D., she designed various deep learning networks for image reconstruction for Diffuse Optical Imaging. She worked at Wistron ITS, Taiwan, as a Senior Software Engineer in the data team (real-world data projects). She has also worked externally with Sanofi, a pharmaceutical company, as a Data Scientist. Nazish is a recipient of several awards, including the CTCI Taiwan research grant, Hiroshima Japan student exchange, Northern University Excellence Scholarship during Master's studies, National Central University Scholarship during Ph.D., and Begum Bilquis Scholarship during undergraduate studies.

Nawal Panjwani , B.Eng.
  • Research Assistant
Research Focus:

Nawal Panjwani is an graduate student at Cornell University. She is pursuing a Masters program in Biomedical Engineering through the accelerated BS/MS program. She previously worked at the Kirsch Lab at NYU Langone Health where they’re researching novel mechanisms involved in the regulation of cartilage homeostasis, maintenance, and pathology with the ultimate goal of defining novel therapeutic targets for the treatment of osteoarthritis. Her current research interests include improving MRI safety by predicting Specific Absorption Rate (SAR) patterns in tissues through artificial intelligence and deep learning. She hopes to pursue a PhD in Biomedical Engineering.

  • B.Eng., Biomolecular Sciences, New York University
Dr. Fraser Robb
Fraser Robb , PhD
  • Chief Technology Leader, GE Healthcare
  • Advisor, Winkler Lab at Weill Cornell Medicine
Research Focus:

Dr. Fraser Robb is Chief Technology Leader at GE Healthcare with focus on MR coil engineering. He acts as an advisor to the Winkler Lab at Weill Cornell Medicine as part of the GE showcase site.

  • Professor, Dartmouth; Professor, Sheffield
  • PhD, University of Aberdeen
Safeera Subratie
Safeera Subratie , BSHA
  • Administrative Assistant
Phone: 212 746 2971
Rigoberto Vazquez, M.Sc.
Rigoberto Vazquez Jr, M.Sc.
  • PhD Student
Research Focus:

Rigoberto Vazquez Jr is currently pursuing his Ph.D. in the biomedical engineering (BME) program jointly by Weill Cornell  Graduate School of Medical Sciences (WCGS) and Cornell University Graduate School (CU-I). Rigoberto's current research interest focuses on the design and development of MRI RF coils for nonconventional anatomical regions using unique materials and a wide range of 3D printing techniques.

  • M.Sc. in Nuclear Engineering & Radiological Science w/t emphasis in Materials and Medical Physics, University of Michigan, 2021
  • B.Sc. in Mechanical Engineering, California State University Chico, 2019
Mengying Zhang , B.Eng.
  • PhD Student
Research Focus:

Mengying studied Electrical Engineering (B.Eng) in National University of Singapore and neuroscience (B.A) together with pre-med studies in Columbia University. She is currently a PhD student in the Winkler lab, and her research interests include neuroimage analysis using machine learning tools and bio-electronics.

  • B.Eng. in Electrical Engineering, National University of Singapore
  • B.A. in Neuroscience and pre-med studies, Columbia University

Former Lab Members

Tasmia Afrin
  • Summer student
Research Focus:

Tasmia is a senior at the Bronx High School of Science. She is currently studying eating disorders with Harvard STRIPED at the Boston Children’s Hospital in order to tackle the stigma against mental illnesses. She is interested in further studying eating disorders, mental illnesses, psychology and medicine. In the future, she hopes to pursue a career in clinical psychology and biomedical engineering. 

Mina Chookhachizadeh Moghadam , Ph.D.
  • Postdoctoral Associate
Research Focus:

Mina has received her Ph.D. in computer science from the University of California, Irvine, in 2020. Her main area of research is developing machine learning and deep learning algorithms with applications in healthcare, medical devices, and predictive medicine. During her graduate studies, she extensively worked in multidisciplinary projects to develop innovative ML platforms for patients' physiological monitoring and early prediction of hypotensive events in ICUs. She has also worked as an intern at Edward Lifesciences Co. and fostered collaboration with anesthesiologists and researchers at Cleveland Clinics, to increase the impact of her research on real-world field applications.

Rena Fukuda
Rena Fukuda
  • Summer rotation student
Research Focus:

Rena received her Bachelors in Biomedical Engineering at Hofstra University with a concentration in biomechanics and research in the Hofstra Ultrasound Laboratory. She is starting a PhD at the Meinig School of Biomedical Engineering in August 2021. Her research interests include imaging diagnostics and imaging instrumentation. 

Frida Galaviz Huerta
  • Summer student
Research Focus:

Frida Galaviz Huerta was born in Zacatecas, Mexico in 2000 and is currently pursuing an undergraduate degree at New York University. Frida studies Psychology with a triple minor in Linguistics, Chemistry, and Child/Adolescent Mental Studies (CAMS) and is interested in neuroscience research related to infants and adolescents. She graduates May 2022 and hopes to pursue a graduate degree.

Sayim Gökyar
Sayim Gökyar , PhD
  • Postdoctoral Research Fellow
Research Focus:

Dr. Gökyar's research interests include, design, demonstration and characterization of the RF devices, instrumentation of MRI devices, high resolution MR imaging, RF safety of electronic devices, metamaterials and implantable electronic devices for wireless sensing. He has hands-on clean room experience since 2009. He recently focuses on ultra-high field (UHF) MRI and novel solutions for the problems of UHF-MRI.

  • Ph.D. Bilkent University, Ankara, Turkey
Bal Govind
  • Collaborating PhD Student
Research Focus:

Bal Govind received his M.S degrees in Mechanical Engineering and Electrical Engineering from North Carolina State University in 2018 and 2021 respectively. He worked on ultrasonic MEMS with the Advanced Technology group at TDK Invensense (San Jose) in 2019 and with the RF Amplifiers group at Texas Instruments (Dallas) in 2020 and 2021. He is pursuing his Ph.D. in Electrical Engineering at Cornell University with a current focus on RF integrated circuit design.

Adrian Hoang
  • Summer student
Research Focus:

Adrian is a senior at the Bronx High School of Science. He is interested in studying machine learning and its applications in MR engineering. In the future he hopes to pursue a career in medicine and engineering.

Shadeeb Hossain
  • Fellow
Research Focus:

Shadeeb Hossain has an educational background in Electrical, Electronics, and Computer (EEC) Engineering and is currently a Doctoral Candidate in the Department of Electrical Engineering, The University of Texas at San Antonio (Graduation Year:2022). He graduated with a Master of Science in Electrical Engineering from Central Michigan University, in 2018. He is a registered Engineer-In-Training (Texas Board of Professional Engineers and Land Surveyors), and a Certified Cloud Practitioner (Amazon CCP). His area of expertise includes: (i) Electromagnetism, (ii) Optical Property analysis (iii) Material property analysis (iv) Finite Element Analysis.

Vishwas Mishra
Vishwas Mishra , B.Tech.
  • Rotation Graduate Student
Research Focus:

Vishwas received his B.Tech. from Indian Institute of Technology Guwahati in 2020. He is presently a first year graduate student in Physiology, Biophysics and Systems Biology (PBSB) program at Weill Cornell Graduate School and his main research interests lie in the field of computational neuroscience and systems biology. In Winkler lab he is working on MR guided Focused Ultrasound coils and their implications in targeted tissue thermal ablation for treating neuropathic pain.

  • B.Tech., Indian Institute of Technology
Arthur Nghiem
Arthur Nghiem
  • Summer Student
Research Focus:

Arthur Nghiem was born in Houston in 2003. After graduating from high school a year early, he is an undergraduate sophomore studying biomedical engineering at the University of Minnesota, Twin Cities. He is the principal inventor of the wireless communication device grip guide, for which he was granted a USPTO patent in 2017. He previously conducted literature review regarding the use of high-temperature superconductors for accessible MRI applications under the supervision of Dr. John Thomas Vaughan of Columbia University. He was nominated for the 2019 IEEE Region 4 Outstanding Student Award for his contributions to technical workshops regarding MRI safety and wireless medical devices. His work at the Winkler Lab focuses on the generation and curation of datasets for deep learning of tissue heating prediction in Ultra High-Field MRI

Isabelle Saniour
Isabelle Saniour , PhD
  • Postdoctoral Research Fellow
Research Focus:

Isabelle Saniour was born in Mina, Lebanon in 1991. She received her Master’s degree in Sensors, Measurement and Instrumentation from Pierre and Marie Curie University in partnership with ESPCI, Paris, France in 2013. She received the Ph.D. degree in physics from Lyon 1 University in 2017. From 2018 to 2019, she was involved in research on superconducting radiofrequency coils at University of Paris-Sud in Orsay, France. Her main research interests include the development of radiofrequency coils and hardware and the assessment of SAR for MR engineering applications.

  • PhD, Lyon 1 University