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Featured Past Lab Members

Former Graduate/Dental Students​​​​


Ayana Paul

Ayana Paul, former PREP student from the Yilmaz Lab.


Currently, Ayana is pursuing a PhD in Microbiology and Molecular Genetics in Emory University, Georgia.

JoAnn and Dr. Yilmaz at the IADR meeting in San Francisco.jpg

Dr. JoAnn Roberts

Dr. JoAnn Roberts successfully obtained her PhD in December 2018 from MUSC.


Currently, a UPLIFT post-doctoral Fellow, developing scholar, and faculty track post-doctoral trainee at UCLA Medical School.


Dr. Ralee Spooner

Dr. Ralee Spooner, a lieutenant officer in the US Navy and graduate student in Dr. Yilmaz's lab, successfully defended his Masters in Dental Sciences Degree in May 2019 at MUSC, and also completed his residency degree in MUSC's periodontics department as chief resident.

Currently, a Lieutenant and periodontist at Dental Corps, United States Navy.


Kyulim Lee

Kyulim Lee is a former DMD/PhD Student (University of Florida), NIH F30 awardee, and adjunct Assistant Professor at University of Florida.

Currently, a pediatric dentist at Ohio State University/Nation-wide Children's Hospital. 


Dr. Carolina Jermanus

Dr. Carolina Jermanus is a former DMD/MS Student (University of Florida).

Currently, a Board-certified private-practice periodontist in Downers Grove, Illinois.

Former Faculty/Postdoctoral Trainees


Dr. ChulHee Choi, PhD

Former Post-doctoral associate and Research Assistant Professor.

Currently, an Associate Professor at Chungam University, Department of Microbiology, College of Medicine, South Korea


Dr. Kalina Atanasova, DVM, PhD

Former Post-doctoral Associate.


Currently, Dr. Kalina Atanasova is a Biological Scientist in the Biological Chemistry Department of the College of Pharmacy at the University of Florida. 


Dr. Jungnam Lee, PhD

Former Post-doctoral Associate and Research Assistant Professor. 

Currently, Dr. Jungnam Lee is a Research Assistant Professor in the Division of Pulmonary, Critical Care & Sleep Medicine at the University of Florida.

Visiting Professor/Scholars

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Dr. Je Chul Lee, MD, PhD

Former visiting Professor 

Currently, Professor and Chair, Department of Microbiology, Kyungpook National University School of Medicine, Daegu, South Korea

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Dr. Ana Carolina Morandini Ramos, DDS, PhD

Former FAPESP Post-Doctoral Fellow, Faculdade de Odontologia de Bauru. Universidade de São Paulo, Bauru, Brazil

Currently, an Assistant Professor, University of Pacific, Arthur A. Dugani School of Dentistry

Former Staff


Casey Derieux

Former Research Specialist

Currently, a PhD Student at the University of Delaware, Department of Microbiology


Zach Messick

Former Research Specialist

Currently, a JD, Patent Attorney at Knobbe Martens in San Diego, California

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