Lengyel/Kenny Lab

Lengyel/Kenny Lab Members


Sarah Ackroyd, MD, MPH

  • Dr. Ackroyd focuses her research efforts on the female single cell atlas project, which utilizes single-cell RNA and ATAC sequencing to map and identify the various cell types of the human uterus.
  • Education: BS Biochemistry & BA Statistics, University of Rochester; MPH, University of Buffalo; MD, University of Rochester
  • Publications

Pretty Bajwa, PhD

  • Currently working with Dr. Kenny to characterize the tumor-promoting role of mesothelial cells in different stages of ovarian cancer metastasis in vivo.
  • Dr. Bajwa received her PhD in from the University of Newcastle, Australia for her work on age-related mTOR signaling in gynecological cancers.

Janna Heide, MD

  • Dr. Heide is investigating the effect of cancer-associated fibroblasts on immune cell infiltration and function in ovarian cancer. Her research is focused on the expression of Nicotinamide-N-Methyltransferase (NNMT) in fibroblasts that influences the response to therapy and alters the immune phenotype in the tumor microenvironment.
  • Medical school: University of Hamburg, Germany
  • Current Grants: German Research Foundation (DFG)
  • Publications

Hilary Kenny, PhD

  • Co-directs lab with Dr. Ernst Lengyel
  • Dr. Kenny primarily focuses on the role of the tumor microenvironment in early ovarian cancer metastasis. Her research specifically focuses on the molecular mechanisms involved in ovarian cancer adhesion, invasion, metabolic activity and proliferation, including adhesive molecules, proteases and extracellular matrices. 
  • Current grants: 
  1. Bears Care Pilot Project Grant. PI: Ernst Lengyel. Hilary Kenny's Role: Co-Investigator. Title: "Ovarian Cancer Drug Discovery by High Throughput Screening with a Three-Dimension (3D) Culture." Project Period: 01/01/2022-12/31/2022. 
  2. AbbVie-UChicago Collaboration (RFP) 2021. PI: Hilary Kenny and Ernst Lengyel. Title: “Defining the Heterogeneous Immune Landscape of the Ovarian Cancer Tumor Microenvironment.” Project Period: 12/20/2021-12/19/2024. 
  3. UCCCC Team Science Award- PI: Jing Chen. Hilary Kenny's Role: Co-PI. Title: “Metabolism-related mechanisms underlying PARPi response and resistance in ovarian cancer cells and the tumor microenvironment.” Project Period: 07/01/2021-06/30/2023. 
  4. Arsenalbio- PI: Ernst Lengyel. Hilary Kenny's Role: Co-Investigator. Title: “Delineating the Ovarian Cancer Tumor Microenvironment: A Single-Cell Perspective.” Project Period: 07/01/2020-06/30/2023. 
  5. Ovarian Cancer Research Alliance Collaborative Research Development Grant. PI: Ugo Cavallaro. Co-PI: Ernst Lengyel, and Francis Balkwill. Hilary Kenny's Role: Co-Investigator. Title: “Interplay between ovarian cancer stem cells and the tumor microenvironment: Mechanisms, biological implications and therapeutic opportunities.” Project Period: 01/01/2020-12/31/2022. 
  • Dr. Kenny received her PhD in Neurobiology and Physiology at Northwestern University and completed her postdoctoral fellowship in Ovarian Cancer Biology, Tumor Microenvironment and Metastasis at the University of Chicago. She completed her bachelor's in biology at Washington College in Chestertown, Maryland. 
  • Publications

Rahul Krishnan, MD

  • Dr. Krishnan focuses on understanding the precursors of ovarian cancer. He currently has two on-going projects:
  1. Project utilizing spatial transcriptomics and proteomics to understand the pathophysiology of serous tubal intra-epithelial carcinoma (STIC) and its evolution to high grade serous ovarian cancer. He is working in collaboration with Dr. Mann’s group at the Max Planck Institute in Munich.
  2. Single cell atlas project: Dr. Krishnan's work utilizes single-cell RNA and ATAC sequencing to map and identify the various cell types of the human uterus.
  • Dr. Krishnan received his medical degree from Weill Cornell Medical College and completed his residency in obstetrics and gynecology at the University of Virginia. He earned his BA at Cornell University. 
  • Publications

Abir Mukherjee, PhD

  • Dr. Mukherjee is interested in the effect of the tumor microenvironment on ovarian cancer metastasis. 
  • Publications 

Melanie Weigert, PhD

  • Dr. Weigert is working to identify the origin of ovarian cancer using Next-Generation Sequencing.
  • She received her PhD from the University of Glasgow in Cancer Research while working on oncolytic adenoviruses and how they induced cytotoxicity in cancer. 

Samantha Yee, PhD

  • Dr. Yee is interested in breast and ovarian cancer research and community outreach.
  • Focus in lab: Studying crosstalk between stromal, immune, and cancer cells in ovarian cancer progression and drug resistance. 
  • Education: PhD in Integrated Biomedical Sciences, Physiology and Pharmacology, UT Health San Antonio; Bachelor of Science in Biology/Minor in Chemistry, St. Lawrence University
  • Publications

Roni Yoeli-Bik, MD

  • Dr. Yoeli-Bik is interested in investigating the ultrasound characteristics of adnexal masses in favor of accurate preoperative discrimination between benign and malignant lesions.
  • Medical School: The Hebrew University of Jerusalem, Hadassah Medical School, Israel (B.Med.Sc., Magna Cum Laude) 
  • *Hirshoren, N., *Yoeli, R., Cohen, J. E., Weinberger, J. M., Kaplan, N., Merims, S., Peretz, T., & Lotem, M. (2020). Checkpoint inhibitors: Better outcomes among advanced cutaneous head and neck melanoma patients. PloS one, 15(4), e0231038. *Equal contribution

Time Period in the Lab


Position in the Lab

Position obtained after training

2023-2024 Brynn Durecki Research Analyst Medical Student 
2022-2024 Samantha Yee Postdoctoral Scholar  N/A
2021-2024 Roni Yoeli-Bik Clinical Research Analyst N/A
2022-2024 Rocky Hoffman Research Analyst Medical Student 
2022-2024 Sarah Rauch Research Analyst  N/A
2022-2024 Aasa Shimizu Postdoctoral scholar N/A
2022-2024 Ethan Teich Research Analyst  Medical Student
2019-2024 Lisa Schweizer Postdoctoral Student Head of Deep Visual Proteomics at OmicVision Biosciences
2020-2023 Sarah Ackroyd Fellow Assistant Professor, Section of Gynecologic Oncology, University of Chicago
2021-2022 Grace Keegan Medical Student  Medical Student, University of Chicago


Pascal Bus

Staff Scientist

Senior Scientist Lead Generation/Research & Pre-Clinical Development - Kiadis Pharma a Sanofi Company


Malu Zandbergen

Lab Manager 2



Rohit Nagare

Postdoctoral Researcher

Koyer Lab


Bhavika Mandi

Clinical Research Specialist

Quality Intern - UofL Physicians


Dahlya Manning

Clinical Research Assistant

Research Study Coordinator -Northwestern University


Paul Miller

Research Analyst

Recombinant Proteins Technical Sales Specialist – Thermo Fisher

2019- 2022

Kasjusz Kordylewicz

Research Associate II

Associate Scientist II - In-Vivo Pharmacology


Sayed Alhunayan

Research Analyst

Post Bac Researcher, Northwestern University


Sarah Ashley

Research Analyst

Medical student, University of Colorado School of Medicine


Rohin Dhir, MD

Research Specialist I

Internal Medicine Residency, California


Natalie Bourand

Undergraduate Researcher

Continuing undergraduate education, University of Chicago


Chun-Yi Chiang, MS

Research Specialist II

Cellular Screening Center, University of Chicago

2019 – 2021

Katarzyna Zawieracz


PhD student, Cancer Biology Program, University of Chicago


Patricia Dauer, PhD

Postdoctoral Fellow

Scientist, Biotech


Mark Eckert, PhD

Postdoctoral Fellow

Promoted to Research Assistant Professor at the University of Chicago, current VP at a biotech company in San Diego, CA


Carman Ip, PhD

Postdoctoral fellow

Director, High Throughput Screening Core, University of Chicago


Aliaksandra (Sasha) Irhashava

Student – Fulbright Scholar

Continued PhD at Warsaw University


Helen Daifotis

MS III one year research

Resident, OB/GYN, Columbia University


Peter Hart, PhD

Postdoctoral Fellow

Assistant Professor (tenure track), Roosevelt University


Dominik Nahotko


PhD student, Cancer Biology Program, Northwestern University


Claire Hoppenot

Gynecologic Oncology Fellow

Attending, Baylor College of Medicine

2015 – 2018

Agnieszka Chryplewicz

Master's student, Technician

PhD student, Cancer Biology Program, ESPL Lausanne