University of Calgary

University of Toronto

The University of Toronto is a public research university located in Toronto, Ontario, Canada on the grounds that surround Queen's Park. It was founded by royal charter in 1827 as King's College, the first institution of higher learning in the colony of Upper Canada. Originally controlled by the Church of England, the university assumed the present name in 1850 upon becoming a secular institution.

Academically, the University of Toronto is noted for influential movements and curricula in literary criticism and communication theory, known collectively as the Toronto School. The university was the birthplace of insulin and stem cell research, and was the site of the first practical electron microscope, the development of multi-touch technology, the identification of the first black hole Cygnus X-1, and the development of the theory of NP-completeness.

Anika Chowdhury

Research Analyst

Anika Chowdhury is currently completing her Bachelor of Science in Global Health, Sociology, and Psychology at the University of Toronto. Within global health, Anika’s academic interests include socio-economic and cultural determinants of health in populations around the world. Anika has a keen interest in the implementation of innovative tools and models that promote healthcare accessibility with the involvement of the community. Through BRIGHT, Anika hopes to successfully evaluate strategies that focus on narrowing the gap between patients and their access to care and professional support. In the past, Anika has worked with the Canadian Centre for Diversity and Inclusion, University of Toronto's iGem, and the Black Physicians Association of Ontario. Currently, Anika spends her time as the Vice President of Healthy Minds UofT and as a research assistant in the Department of Sociology at the University of Toronto. As a proud believer in accessibility for all, Anika hopes to apply her experiences gained from her own community in Toronto to her work at BRIGHT.

Irene Poon

Research Analyst

Irene is an University of Toronto alumnus currently enrolled in the Masters of Science in Occupational Therapy program at Queen's University.

In between years, Irene has developed knowledge in health promotion, community development and computer science. Having engaged in a variety of outpatient and inpatient settings, she hopes to integrate these practices and contribute to a more accessible and streamlined healthcare system. Some of Irene's past experiences include employment at Intertek Health Sciences and Co-founder and President of a campus student club.

United Kingdom

University of Oxford

The University of Oxford is a collegiate research university located in Oxford, England. First evidences of teaching trace back as early as 1096, making it the oldest university in the English-speaking world and the world's second-oldest university in continuous operation. The history and influence of the University of Oxford has made it one of the most prestigious universities in the world.

Oxford has educated many notable alumni, including 27 prime ministers of the United Kingdom and many heads of state and government around the world. As of 2019, 69 Nobel Prize winners, 3 Fields Medalists, and 6 Turing Award winners have studied, worked, or held visiting fellowships at the University of Oxford, while its alumni have won 160 Olympic medals.

The university is ranked first globally by the Times Higher Education World University Rankings since 2016 and is consistently ranked as among the world's top ten universities. The contribution of University of Oxford to biomedical research is immense and illustrious: its Nobel Laureates in Physiology or Medicine span from Sir Charles Sherrington, pioneer of the modern neurophysiology and inventor of the term “synapse”, to Sir John Gurdon, for his work on nuclear transplantation and cloning.

The university is made up of 38 constituent colleges, and a range of academic departments, which are organised into four divisions. It does not have a main campus, and its buildings and facilities are scattered throughout the city centre.

It operates the world's oldest university museum, as well as the largest university press in the world and the largest academic library system nationwide.

Raffaele Sarnataro

Lead Research Analyst

Raffaele studied at Scuola Normale Superiore and, in parallel, at University of Pisa, in his native Italy, obtaining a BSc in Biotechnologies, an MSc in Molecular and Cell Biology and a Diploma in Biology, completing his studies in 2017.

After international study and research experiences at Harvard Medical School and University of Cambridge, he decided to pursue his career abroad and in 2017 he was offered a place in the 4-year Wellcome Trust Doctoral Programme in Neuroscience, at the University of Oxford where he has recently obtained an MSc in Neuroscience.

He is currently a DPhil student in Miesenböck lab, at the Centre for Neural Circuits and Behaviour. His research focuses on understanding how complex behaviours springs out from physical interaction of living matters, in particular, he is now working for understanding how is sleep pressure physically encoded in the brain.

In Oxford, he is pioneering the first European Chapter of BRIGHT International as Lead Research analyst, after having gathered a team of six people. He is thrilled to be able to stimulate international research to improve health innovation implementation and more effectively bring scientific novelties to people.

Besides that, in Oxford he is Social Secretary of the Cortex Club, the neuroscience student-postdoc association. At the same time, he is associate member of the Italian Centre for Excellence and Transdisciplinary Studies, and long-term collaborator of Italian National Association of Natural Sciences Teachers, trying to contributing to fostering of science at multiple levels.

Elena Brenna

Research Analyst

Elena is a Post-Doctoral scientist at the University of Oxford, researching the role of lymphocytes T in the context of an effective vaccine for Human Immunodeficiency Virus (HIV).

Upon her degree in Biology at the University of Milan (Italy), she was keen to study how the immune system can become disrupted in immunopathology. For this reason, she completed her Master's in Biology Applied in Biomedical Research in Professor Federica Sallusto’s laboratory (Switzerland). During her research assistance experience at the University of Oxford (UK) one year later, she became intrigued by how different elements of the immune system interact with each other during pathogenesis and how infections can influence the orchestration of the entire immune system.

She therefore continued her graduate studies at the University of Oxford where she completed her DPhil in Clinical Medicine with Professor Sir Andrew McMichael.

Recently she also became fascinated in global health to explore not only the laboratory aspect of the research, but also the health problems of the entire globe. She is also convinced that translational medicine is a crucial area of research to ensure that scientific progress in biology leads to better clinical applications and improved medical care.

Tooki Sin Chu

Research Analyst

Tooki is currently completing her B.A. in Biomedical Sciences at the University of Oxford. Her research project focuses on the functional characterisation of an endonuclease that has been implicated in homologous recombination and mitochondrial function. As part of BRIGHT, Tooki seeks to evaluate different models and initiatives that promote the translation of basic research and healthcare innovations into clinical practice.

Felix Jackson

Research Analyst

Felix is a first year DPhil candidate based in the Department of Statistics, funded by a CRUK Prize Studentship. His research focuses on using supervised and unsupervised learning algorithms for the early detection of cancer.

His background is in Natural Sciences, but he has spent last year working as a data scientist in a technology startup. He is interested in the interface between software, science and healthcare. He would like to find out why there is so much inertia in translating scientific innovations into medical practice, and how med-tech companies affect this process.

Clayton Manson

Research Analyst

Clayton is from the United States where he studies Molecular Biology at William Jewell College. His research investigates the neurotoxicity of tributyltin in mouse enteric neurons. In the future, he plans to become a physician scientist.

In his free time he enjoys playing the French horn, reading, hiking, and photography.

Antonia Schultze-Mosgau

Research Analyst

Antonia holds a BSc, and is currently completing her MSc, in psychology and economics. She specializes in public health, market and consumer psychology, behavioural and experimental economics, and their interface to neurosciences. As a researcher at the Health Economics Research Centre (HERC) in Oxford, she focuses on predicting health and economic related decision-making processes and behaviour.

She applies various methods, such as fMRI, and implements novel interventions in order to support society and its individuals with regard to economy, social welfare and well-being. She is particularly interested in health innovation, artificial intelligence, and neuro-forecasting aggregate choice and market-level outcomes.

Due to her own company foundations and further entrepreneurial experiences, she has developed strong marketing and HR management skills. Antonia is an expert on business models and strategies, and above all, her key competency is held within the consultation and development of start-ups.