top of page

Team Members

Epelman Headshot.jpg

Dr. Slava Epelman, MD, PhD

Dr. Slava Epelman is a Clinician-Scientist in the Department of Medicine, Division of Cardiology at the University Toronto, Peter Munk Cardiac Centre, a Senior Scientist and Cardiovascular Research Group lead at the Toronto General Research Institute, University Health Network, and the Loretta Rogers Chair in Immunobioengineering for the Ted Rogers Centre for Heart Research, University of Toronto. Dr. Epelman obtained his MD / PhD (in Immunology) from the University of Calgary and then did his medical residency and clinical fellowships at the Cleveland Clinic, Baylor College of Medicine and Washington University. He is a staff cardiologist in the Peter Munk Cardiac Centre at the Toronto General Hospital. His scientific interests are focused on the role of macrophages in cardiac tissue injury and regeneration.  




Sarah Wilson

Research Administrative Assistant

Fun fact: I've travelled to over 60 different countries


Crystal Kantores

Lab Manager

Mastering the art of Herding Cats

Undergraduate: University of Toronto

Fun fact: I get road rage walking behind people

Current members

Scientific Associates


Dr. Shabana Vohra, PhD

Scientific Associate



PhD: University of Essex

Dr. Abdul Momen, MD, PhD

Animal Surgeon

Postdoctoral Fellows

Danielle Lee.jpg

Dr. Danielle Lee, PhD

Postdoctoral Fellow

Role of IFN-I in hypertensive heart disease

PhD: University of Manitoba

Fun fact: I once led a 6 week long canoe trip in Northern Manitoba


Dr. Dler Mahmood, PhD

Postdoctoral Fellow 

Macrophage clonality in cardiovascular disease

PhD: Sorbonne University

Fun fact: I am a serious chess player

Graduate Students


Homaira Hamidzada

PhD Candidate

Investigating macrophages in human cardiac function and in viral myocarditis

Undergraduate: University of Toronto

Fun fact: I have no fun facts; I eat, sleep and breathe single cell


Anthony Wong

PhD Candidate

Studying the developmental and epigenetic heterogeneity of tissue resident macrophages

Undergraduate: University of Toronto

Fun fact: I'm a singer

Rysa Zaman.JPG

Rysa Zaman

PhD Candidate

Defining cardio-protective mechanisms of the immune system in hypertensive heart disease


Undergraduate: University of British Columbia

Fun fact: I can fight in both orthodox and southpaw stance for Muay Thai


Julia Lin

PhD Candidate

Role of T cells in hypertension and viral myocarditis

Undergraduate: University of Toronto

Fun fact: I once lost every game on my elementary school soccer team


Justin Callahan

 PhD Candidate

Title: TBD

Undergraduate: University of Toronto

Fun fact: I once took a 15 hour road trip in one day by myself!

Alex Lac Lab website photo_edited.jpg

Alex Lac

 PhD Candidate

Title: TBD

Undergraduate: University of Western Ontario

Fun fact: I was on BBC News for riding my bike during the hottest heatwave in Canada.


Sara Nejat (Scientific Associate 2023)

Current position: 

Sarah Dick (Postdoctoral Fellow 2022)

Current position: Assistant Professor at Queen's University 

Laura Aronoff (PhD. 2022 - LMP)

Current position: MD student at the University of Toronto


Simon Pascual Gil (Postdoctoral Fellow 2022)

Current position: 


Fanny Beguier (Postdoctoral Fellow 2020)

Current position: Academic researcher from Vision Institute


Candice Tang (MSc. 2018 - Applied Immunology)

Current position: Medical Writer at Six Degrees Medical Consulting

Yiming Wang, MD, PhD (Postdoctoral Fellow 2018)

Current position: Geneticist Residency at SickKids

Siyavash (Sina) Hosseinzadeh (MSc. 2017 - LMP)

Current position: MD student at the University of British Columbia

Jillian Macklin (MSc. 2017 - LMP)

Current position: MD/PhD student at the University of Toronto

Iulia Barbu (MSc. 2017 - Applied Immunology)

Current position: Business Analyst at Avanade

Xavier Clement-Casares, PhD (Research Technician)

Current position: Adjunct Assistant Professor, Medical Microbiology and Immunology at the University of Alberta

bottom of page