Lab Members

Dzhalil Abizgildin, MS

Research Assistant 


Dzhalil holds a BSc in Biological Sciences and Bioethics from Fordham University, followed by an MSc in Biology from New York University. In June 2023, he joined Dr. Chakravarti’s lab as a Clinical Research Coordinator for our Keratoconus study.

Dzhalil is involved in research investigating the role of small leucine-rich proteoglycans in Toll-like receptor responses during ocular infections, as well as the role of pathogenic mutations in keratoconus.

George Maiti, PhD

Assistant Research Scientist


George obtained his doctorate degree from University of Calcutta, India in 2014. His Ph.D. work involved understanding the role of Wnt5a signaling in macrophage functions. He joined Dr. Chakravarti’s lab at Johns Hopkins University to study the role of small leucine-rich proteoglycans (SLRPs) in TLR4/TLR9 responses in macrophages and dendritic cells during ocular infection. He relocated with her group to NYU Langone Health to continue working on these projects.

Madison Glowacki, B.A in Biology

Associate Lab Technician


Madison completed her Bachelor’s Degree in Alfred University, graduating in the class of 2020. She holds a Bachelor’s in Biology and a Minor in Psychology. She joined Dr. Shukti Chakravarti’s Lab as a Lab Manager in August 2022. She is a member of the lab studying Keratoconus, a degenerative corneal disease.

Sean Ashworth, MS, PhD

Postdoctoral Fellow
Sean completed his BSc in Biochemistry, followed by an MSc in Stem Cells, Development and Regenerative Medicine at the University of Southampton, in the UK. He then obtained his PhD in Vision Science from Cardiff University, where he investigated the effect of endogenous extracellular matrix proteins on the differentiation of corneal epithelial cells and other ocular cell lineages from induced pluripotent stem cells (iPSCs). His research interests include pluripotent stem cell modelling of development and disease, connective tissue biology and pathology, as well as molecular biology and cell and organoid culture. Sean joined Dr. Shukti Chakravarti’s lab in 2022 as a Postdoctoral Fellow, where he will primarily be investigating the impact of novel, potentially pathogenic mutations in the development of the cornea and keratoconus, using patient-specific, iPSC-derived corneal organoids.

Tansol Choi, B.S in Biochemistry


Tansol Completed his Bachelor’s degree in the University of Wisconsin-Madison, graduating class of 2021. He holds a Bachelor’s in Biochemistry and is currently pursuing his Master’s at New York University. He joined Dr. Chakravarti’s lab in June 2022 . He focuses on studying novel synthetic peptides that inhibit LPS-mediated TLR4 response.

2023 Summer Interns

  • Anusha Tuli

Anusha is comparing the proteoglycan-related gene expression between human corneas and corneal organoid models cultivated in our lab. She is also investigating the functions of newly discovered genetic variants related to keratoconus

  • Jenny Klein

Jenny focuses on understanding how the extracellular matrix protein (ECM) lumican regulates toll-like receptors associated with innate immunity in response to viral attacks

  • Deborah George

Deborah’s work focuses on understanding the role of pathogenic DNA variants in keratoconus-related genes discovered in our lab. She analyzes their expression, functions, and assesses their potential involvement in corneal repair processes