Principal Investigator

Seth L. Robia, Ph. D
E-mailOffice Phone: (708) 216-2522
B.A. Biology, Chemistry, St. Olaf College
M.S., Ph.D. University of Wisconsin-Madison

Seth joined the faculty in the Department of Cell and Molecular Physiology at Loyola University Chicago Stritch School of Medicine in 2006.  He teaches a range of subjects for medical and graduate students including Biochemistry (lipid metabolism, enzyme kinetics) Cell Biology (cell cycle, apoptosis), Biophysics (membrane transport, imaging for drug discovery), and Physiology (reproduction). 

Postdoctoral Fellows

Nikolai Smolin, Ph.D.
E-mail ;Lab Phone: (708) 216-5158
Ph. D. University of Dortmund, Dortmund, Germany

Nikolai joined the Robia Lab at the Department of Cell and Molecular Physiology at Loyola University Chicago Strich School of Medicine in 2012.  Nikolai is currently applying modeling techniques (molecular dynamics simulation, docking, etc.) to study dynamics and interactions of SERCA. His scientific interests are computer simulation in biophysics, protein dynamics, water in biology, nanoscale biophysics, therapeutic proteins, etc. For more details please visit

Graduate Students

Olga N. Raguimova
E-mail; Lab Phone: (708) 216-5158
B.S. Biological Sciences, UIC, Chicago, 2011

Olga joined the Robia Lab in the summer of 2014. She is currently investigating SERCA key conformational changes during calcium cycling and molecular mechanism of SERCA relief-of-inhibition by PLB phosphorylation. In her research, Olga utilizes such techniques as molecular dynamics simulations, molecular genetics, biochemical assays, fluorescence resonance energy transfer measurements, etc.

Alumni                           Role in Robia Lab        Dates                   Current Position

                Technician                   7/06 – 1/09          

Zhihong Hu                       Technician                   6/08 – 9/10           Medical Resident, Loyola

Sebastian Mestril              Undergrad Res.           6/10 – 8/10           Grad Student, UNC Chapel Hill

Zachary Jones                   Undergrad Res.           6/10 – 8/10           Special Education teacher

Paul Hale                           Research Assistant     6/10 – 10/10         Law School

Qiujing Song                      Postdoc                       6/08 – 6/11          

Eric DeGuevara                 High School Res.         6/11 – 8-11          Undergrad, Univ. Il. Urbana-Champaign

Edgar Gonzales                 High School Res.         12/11 – 5/12         College Student

Philip Bidwell                   Grad student (PhD)    6/08 – 4/12           postdoc, Univ. Cincinnati, (E. Kranias)

Sandeep Pallikkuth           Postdoc                       1/10 – 5/12           Imaging Facility Director, U. Tennessee

Dane Zieman                     Undergrad                   6/10 – 9/12           Engineer, Thermo-Fisher Scientific

Christian Espino               High School Res.         10/12 – 5/13         Undergrad, St. Mary’s Univ., MN

Christopher Stefonowicz Technician                   6/12 – 7/13           Med student, Stritch School of Medicine

Alex Ticho                        Technician                   2/12 – 6/13           MD/PhD student, Univ. IL, Chicago

Aimee Bueno                    High School Res.         6/13– 8/14            Undergrad, Univ. IL, Chicago

Michael Sobieraj               Postbac student          7/13 – 9/13           MD student

Marsha Pribadi                 Technician                   8/13 – 6/14           Property Consultant, Jakarta, Indonesia

Surtaj Iram                        Postdoc                       9/12 – 9/14           Assistant Professor, South Dakota State

Juan Orozco                      High School Res.         6/14 – 8/14           Undergrad, DePaul University

Berenis Calleros                High School Res.         6/14 – 8/14           High School Student

S. Mazurek (coadvisor)    Grad student (PhD)    6/10 – 7/14          Postdoc, Northwestern

Neha Abrol                       Grad student (PhD)    6/11 – 10/14         Postdoc, Johns Hopkins, (M. Anderson)

Zhanjia Hou, PhD             Research Asst. Prof.   2/07 – 5/15           Medical Physicist

Ryan Himes                      Grad student (PhD)    6/11 – 7/15           Asst. Professor, Olivet Nazarene Univ.

Vidhya Sivakumaran         Postdoc                       12/13 – 8/15    Chief Scientific Officer, Kids Science Labs

Please help us keep this info up to date! If you have additions/corrections, please email

Alumnus  Role  Dates  Current Post
Eileen M. Kelly Technician 07/06 - 1/09 Medical Resident, Loyola
Zhihong Hu Technician 06/08 - 9/10 Medical Resident, Loyola