Shruti Natarajan
BS Biology (UTD, 2020)


Now: Dental school at Texas A&M University. Hello! My name is Shruti Natarajan and I began to work under Dr. Rodrigues' lab as a Clark Scholar in Summer 2016. I began working with growing cell culture on titanium plates and observing cellular responses. Currently, I am a biology major at UTD. I love to play piano, and travel around the world. I also work as a lifeguard and am an active American Red Cross volunteer. In the future, I hope to go to dental school and pursue a DDS. I am excited to do more dental research under Dr. Rodrigues in these upcoming years!

Alikhan Fidai
BS Bioengineering (UTD, 2020)


Now: PhD program at Cornell University. Hey! My name is Alikhan Fidai and I am transferring into UTD for Biomedical Engineering this fall. I was placed in Dr. Rodrigues' lab as part of the LSAMP research fellowship. I am currently studying bacterial adhesion on biomaterials used for dental implants. I love spending my free time volunteering as a camp counselor and content facilitator for a number of programs aimed towards positive youth development. I am really looking forward to expanding my knowledge base through research under Dr. Rodrigues.

Lidia Guida
BS Bioengineering (UTD, 2019)


Now: MS program at UTD.“Hello! My name is Lidia Guida and I am a senior at UT Dallas Biomedical Engineering Program. I became a member of Dr. Rodriguez’ team in May 2017 and focused my work on electrochemical properties of titanium surfaces, effects of corroded surfaces on cellular adhesion and proliferation, and surface imaging techniques. Currently, I am working on investigating effects of multifunctional ionic liquid coatings on dental implant surfaces. In the future, I plan to obtain MS in Biomedical Engineering and continue exploring biomaterial surface modifications, corrosive behavior of dental implants and causes of peri-implant disease.
Aside from my research and studies, I enjoy playing piano, reading, gardening and spending time with my family and friends.”

Shaida Parsaei
BS Biology (UTD, 2019)


Now: dental school Harvard University."Hello! My name is Shaida Parsaei, and I am majoring in Biology at UT Dallas. I joined the BONE Lab in the summer of 2017 under guidance of Dr. Rodrigues. I am currently working on evaluating interactions between dental cements and oral bacteria, as well as, evaluating long-term biocompatibility of tissue forming cells that are in direct contact with dental cements. I am very excited to be a part of the lab since it is aligned with my interest in dental research and development and prepares me as a future dentist. Outside of the lab, I enjoy playing the piano. I serve on the Student Leadership Advisory Board, and I am a First Year Leader and mentor for freshmen."

Frederick Wang
BS Bioengineering (UTD, 2019)


Now: medical school.Hello! My name is Frederick Wang and I am an incoming freshman to UTD. I graduated from Plano West Senior High School, and I was accepted into the Clark Summer Research Program; I was placed into Dr. Rodrigues’ lab. I’m currently learning about and helping out with understanding the electrochemistry nature of dental implants and its overall stability. I’m majoring in Biomedical Engineering in the fall and I am super excited!

Joel Jacob
BS Biology (UTD, 2019)


Now: medical school.Hey! My name is Joel Jacob and I am a sophomore Biology major. I joined Dr. Rodrigues’ lab in Spring 2017. I began working on imaging of failed zirconia implants, particularly focused on their mechanical failure. I am currently working on studying the effects of surface treatment and substrate material on cellular adhesion. I love spending my free time helping with InterVarsity Christian Fellowship, tutoring, and volunteering at a local hospice. In the future, I hope to pursue a career in medicine as a physician. I look forward to continuing to grow in the BONE lab.

Thao Hoang
BS Biology (UTD, 2017)


Now: medical school. I am from Carrollton, Texas and graduated from the Texas Academy of Mathematics and Science at UNT. I joined the BONE Lab in the summer of 2015. My research focuses on two-solution bone cements with applications in vertebroplasty and kyphoplasty. I am now beginning work on the characterization of commercial dental cements.

Outside of the lab, I am an officer of the Chemistry Student Association at UT Dallas and a member of the Collegium V Honors Program.

Jason Chang
BS Biomedical Engineering (UTD, 2017)


Now: pursuing a PhD at Cornell University. I’m from Austin, Texas and I graduated from the Texas Academy of Mathematics and Science (TAMS) at UNT. I spent this past summer in Leipzig, Germany conducting research on the incorporation of iron oxide nanoparticles into hydrogels for biomedical applications. My research project in Dr. Rodrigues’ lab involves studying the bacterial and cell viability of two-solution bone cements containing antibiotics. Outside of lab, I serve as the student VP of the Biomedical Engineering Society (BMES) and Phi Kappa Phi Honor Society at UT Dallas. After graduation, I plan on pursuing a PhD in Biomedical Engineering with the long-term goal of becoming a university professor.

Zain Abidi
BS Biology (UTD, 2016)


Now: medical school. My involvement with the Biomaterials for Oseointegrative Novel Engineering (BONE) Lab began in January of 2015. I am investigating the various mechanical and biological factors that contribute to surface corrosion of titanium dental implants. I have developed a unique set-up and testing chamber that simultaneously applies mechanical forces and the effects of oral bacteria and biofilm on the surface of titanium dental implants. Some of my goals are to publish the research findings and enroll into medical school. Joining the BONE Lab is one of the best decisions I've made in my academic career. Not only do I have the opportunity to study topics that I am passionate about, but I'm also part of a diverse group who are just as supportive as they are academically gifted! Away from school and research I work as a medical scribe, mentor a few freshman students at UT Dallas, and play soccer. ¡Hala Madrid!

Juliana Saba
BS Bioengineering (UTD, 2015)


Now: continues at UTD pursuing a MS degree in bioengineering. Born and raised in Austin, Texas, I am currently a senior seeking a biomedical engineering BS with hopes of attending graduate school. For Dr. Rodrigues’ lab, I have been working to achieve a computational fluid dynamic model of spine vertebroplasty to examine procedural dependencies such as volume and velocity. More recently, I have been developing a cement-retained dental abutment that is less sensitive to the volume of cement used during abutment-crown seating. I have been examining the flow of cement during this procedure because of the link between extravasation and periodontal disease. When I am not on the water with my family, I am either on the soccer field with friends or on the golf course with my teammates.

Cole Blair
BS Bioengineering (UTD, 2015)


Now: continues at UTD working as an engineer with the Medical Device Center. Hi! my name is Cole Blair. I am working on my Biomedical Engineering BS at the University of Texas at Dallas. The research that I have worked on in Dr. Rodrigues’ lab involves studying the effects of antibiotic additives to dental cements and characterizing the cellular response to Zirconia ceramics. After completing my BS, I would like to begin my career engineering medical devices and researching new ways to improve medical procedures and treatments.

Maria Burbano
BS Bioengineering (UTD, 2015)


Now: graduate school University of Minnesota. I was born in Bogota, Colombia and lived there for less than five years. Since then, my family moved around to different countries such as England, Sweden and Spain, and ended up in Frisco, Texas. I am now a junior at UTD studying to earn a bachelor’s in biomedical engineering. I have been involved in two research projects: The analysis of the failure mechanisms of different retrieved hip implants and the analysis of tissues surrounding dental implants. I am now working with development of novel antimicrobial and osseointegrative coatings for dental implants. My goals are to publish a paper and to get into graduate school.

Danyal Siddiqui
BS Bioengineering (UTD, 2015)


Now: continues at UTD pursuing a PhD degree in bioengineering. I joined the BONE lab in the summer 2014 semester. In the lab, my primary focus now is running corrosion tests with a potentiostat to investigate the effect of coatings on the electrochemistry of metals typically used in implants such as titanium and cobalt chromium. I am also assisting with electrochemical testing set-ups for testing of dental and orthopedic implants, giving support to several other projects. Also, I plan to conduct experiments to study new coatings as lubricants that can alter the tribological and corrosion properties of titanium and cobalt chromium. These two alloys are vastly used in the design of implantable devices. In my free time, I enjoy tutoring, volunteering, and playing soccer.

Ridwan Hasseb
BS Bioengineering (UTD, 2015)


Now: graduate school Boston University. I am currently an undergraduate student studying biomedical engineering at the University of Texas at Dallas. My research in Dr. Rodrigues' lab involves trying to find an extended drug delivery system to target bacteria during root canal irrigation. We will explore encapsulation of drugs typically used in the clinics using traditional biocompatible polymers.
I have worked with several collaborators and mentors in this project including clinical collaborators. This work is done in collaboration with Max Shea and Michael Lau under the supervision of Dr. Rodrigues and Dr. Montagner.

Michael Lau
BS Bioengineering (UTD, 2015)


Now: Engineer at Dell, Plano TX. Hello, my name is Michael Lau and I am currently a junior studying Biomedical Engineering at the University of Texas at Dallas. I research with Dr. Rodrigues specifically in drug encapsulation for a specified drug delivery system. This past year I was awarded with an honorable mention from the Goldwater Scholarship. Also, I serve on the leadership team in the EMBS (Engineering in Medicine and Biology Society) Student chapter at UTD. In the future, I plan to pursue a PhD in Biomedical Engineering.

Sutton Wheelis
BS Bioengineering (UTD, 2015)


Now: continues at UTD pursuing a MS degree in bioengineering. I am currently working on my BS Degree in Biomedical Engineering at the University of Texas at Dallas. I am currently in my Junior year and have started working in the lab May 2013. I am researching the effects of chemicals on various grades of titanium with the intention for use in dental implants. This work is done in collaboration with Dr. Thomas Wilson and Dr. Pilar Valderrama. We are exploring the effect of chemicals used in the clinics to detoxify the surface of contaminated implants with bacteria. We believe these solutions can have a detrimental effect on surface morphology and composition, which can affect implant re-osseointegration.

Tatum Przilas
BS Biology (UTD, 2015)


Now: dental school Texas A&M Baylor College of Dentistry. Hi! My name is Tatum Przilas and I'm a senior at UT Dallas. I am a biology major and plan to attend dental school after graduation. Currently, I am performing bacterial testing to determine the pathogenic role in dental implant failure. I have designed a testing system for long-term culture of late colonizer bacteria. This set up will enable testing of the effects of bacteria on the surface of dental implants. Throughout my collegiate career I have worked in dentist, orthodontic, and oral surgery offices as a Registered Dental Assistant and in my spare time I enjoy spending time with my Theta sisters, painting, and playing tennis.

Max Shea
BS Bioengineering (UTD, 2015)


Now: looking for job opportunities. As an undergraduate student at University of Texas at Dallas, I am studying biomedical engineering with plans to continue my education in the field. Currently I am researching on root canal infection treatment using nano-encapsulated drug delivery. I plan to continue this research for the rest of my senior year. Balancing academics, research, and work, I still manage to make the most out of my college career by playing tennis, building computers, and maintaining fish tanks. I hope to contribute as much as I can to the medical field by doing research.