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Sanguinet Lab Members

Current Members

Rhoda Brew-Appiah standing in a lab.

Dr. Rhoda Brew-Appiah, Postdoctoral Researcher

I earned a BA in Biochemistry/Molecular Biology from Reed College in Portland, Oregon. I then worked for a year as a research assistant at Oregon Health and Sciences University in Portland, Oregon. My doctoral research was focused on RNAi of the genes in wheat responsible for celiac disease. Currently, I work on abiotic stress genes in monocots such as wheat and barley in the Pacific Northwest, with an emphasis on root-specific expression.


Luigi Peracchi holding a container of plants.

Luigi Peracchi, PhD Student, MPS

Luigi graduated from the University of California, Santa Cruz in 2011 with a bachelor’s of science degree in biochemistry and molecular biology. He then worked as an analytical chemist in the agricultural science industry for two years before getting accepted into the Molecular Plant Sciences program at Washington State University. He is currently working towards a PhD in Molecular Plant Sciences (MPS) studying stress-induced lignin production and deposition in root systems of both Brachypodium distachyon and Triticum aestivum.


Miguel Rosas holding a large stuffed animal.

Miguel Rosas, PhD Student, MPS

Miguel Rosas received his bachelor’s degree in biology from California State University-San Marcos. As an undergraduate, he worked under the supervision of Dr. Matthew Escobar investigating nitrate induced class III glutaredoxin proteins and their regulatory role in the primary root growth of Arabidopsis thaliana. Miguel joined the Sanguinet lab in 2019 where he is currently working on characterizing the biochemical and genetic regulatory mechanisms of  BUZZ, a root-specific kinase involved in root hair development. In his spare time Miguel likes to go backpacking with friends, have bonfires at the beach, and go on hikes with his dog.


Dylan Oates looking through a microscope.

Dylan Oates, PhD student, MPS

Dylan Oates holds a M.S. in Tropical Plant and Soil Sciences from the University of Hawai’i and currently pursuing a PhD in Molecular Plant Sciences at Washington State University. His research focus is to elucidate the interaction of vernalization with photoperiodism in winter wheat and brachypodium. To do so, he takes a molecular genetics approach to determine the underlying mechanisms to the epigenetic interactions and cold response that regulate this complex process.

Past experience working for the USDA-ARS, he realized the importance for mentorship in the STEM field. Dylan has built skills in effective science communication and outreach by becoming a big brother for BBBS, mentoring for LSAMP organization, assisting in teaching undergraduate level courses, and instructing for GENE-ius Day program focusing on students from k-12. On top of that, Dylan has continued in this pursuit by participating in graduate student organization (GSO) where he has been a part of organizing plant science symposiums and advocating for passing bills and policies beneficial to the field of science.


KJ Fitzgerald.

K.J. Fitzgerald, Undergraduate Researcher

I am starting my senior year at WSU studying Organic Agriculture. I grew up on my family’s dairy in Southern Idaho and am passionate about local food systems and working towards global food security. I aid in several projects and focus on plant cultivation and green house management.

Former Lab Members

Xiaochi Ma.

Xiaochi (Max) Ma, PhD Student

I started to pursue my Ph.D. in Crop Science at WSU in the Fall of 2015 and graduated in Fall 2019. My research mainly focusesd on the physiological and genetic responses of wine grapevines to water stress. I previously obtained my M.S. in Ecology from Nanjing Agricultural University, China and my B.S. in Ecology from Nanjing Forestry University, China.


Thiel Lehman in a lab.

Dr. Thiel Lehman, Ph.D. Student

I finished my Ph.D. in Crop Science in the Sanguinet lab in May 2019. My projects examined hormonal regulation of cell wall defective mutants in Arabidopsis thaliana and root hair initiation/elongation in both A. thaliana and Brachypodium distachyon. Originally from Logan, Utah, I earned my bachelor degrees in Chemistry and Biology, with a focus in life science, from Utah State University in 2013.


Ying Wu sitting at a table with food.

Ying Wu

Ying Wu is a visiting Ph.D. student from Northeast Normal University in Changchun, China.


Alex Mojcher sitting in a chair.

Alex Mojcher, Technician


Zara York.

Zara York, MS Student


Bikash Ghimire jumping in a field.

Bikash Ghimire, MS Student


Rachel Dannay, Rotation Student


Lydia Fields, Undergraduate Researcher


Lydia Tilley, Undergraduate Researcher


Leo Orozco, Undergraduate Researcher


Raul Arroyo.

Raul Arroyo, Undergraduate Researcher


Anna Pettyjohn, Undergraduate Researcher


Maggie Risher, Undergraduate Researcher


Sam Neff, Undergraduate Researcher


T’ian Tai Zemelka, Undergraduate Researcher


Rachel Silverthorn, Upward Bound High School Intern, Summer 2016


Andrea Picardel sitting at a desk.

Andrea Picardel, Upward Bound High School Intern, Summer 2017


Luis Vasquez, Upward Bound High School Intern, Summer 2018


Garrett Wilson, Upward Bound High School Intern, Summer 2019