Ishmail Abdus-Saboor

Ishmail is an Assistant Professor of Biological Sciences at the Zuckerman Mind Brain Behavior Institute at Columbia University. From 2018-2021, he was Mitchell J. and Margo K. Blutt Presidential Assistant Professor in the Department of Biology at the University of Pennsylvania. Ishmail received a B.S. in Animal Science at North Carolina A&T University in 2006 and a Ph.D. in Cell and Molecular Biology from the University of Pennsylvania in 2012, advised by Meera Sundaram. From 2012-2018 Ishmail was postdoctoral fellow at Weill Cornell Medicine and University of Pennsylvania, advised by Benjamin Shykind and Wenqin Luo.

Selected Honors and Awards curriculum vitae

  • Alfred P. Sloan Foundation Research Fellowship (2021)
  • Rita Allen Foundation Scholar, Award in Pain (2020)
  • NIH Mitchell Max Award for Excellence in Pain Research (2018)
  • NIH K99/R00 Pathway to Independence Award (2017)
  • Burroughs Wellcome Fund PDEP Fellowship (2015)

scientists in the abdus-saboor lab

Juan Inclan-Rico, Ph.D.

Postdoctoral Fellow (2020 – present)
*co-mentored with Debroski Herbert
Life Sciences Research Foundation Fellow
B.S., National Autonomous University of Mexico
Ph.D., Rutgers University
jinclan [at]

Anissa Jhumka, Ph.D.

Postdoctoral Fellow (2021 – present )
B.S., Aix-Marseille University, France
Ph.D., Aix-Marseille University, France
ajhumka [at]

Justin Burdge

Biology PhD student (2019 – present)
T32 Genetics Training Grant
B.S., University of Pennsylvania
juburdge [at]

Erin (Evonne) Jean

Immunology PhD student (2020 – present)
*co-mentored with Debroski Herbert
NSF Graduate Research Fellow
B.S., Hampton University
jeanerin [at]

Leah Middleton

Neuroscience PhD Student (2018 – present)
NRSA F31 Fellowship (NINDS)
B.A., Mount Holyoke College
leahjmid [at]

Melanie Schaffler

Neuroscience PhD Student (2018 – present)
B.A., Wesleyan University
schmel [at]

Ryan Schwark

Neuroscience PhD student (2020 – present)
B.S., Elizabethtown College
rschwark [at]

William Foster

Technician (2018 – present)
B.A., Haverford College
wbf [at]

Isabella Succi

Technician (2020 – present)
B.S., St. Joseph’s University
isucci [at]


Heather Rossi, Ph.D.

Research Associate, 2018 – 2021
Current: Research Associate @UPenn

Jessica Jones

Technician, 2018 – 2020
Current: PhD student @ UWashington

Justin Arnold

Undergraduate Researcher (2019 – 2021)

Lucie Pham

Undergraduate Researcher (2019 – 2021)
Next:  Analyst, Clearview Healthcare Partners

Samuel Kaufmann

Undergraduate Researcher, 2019 – 2020