Lab Members

Principal investigator

Dr. Che Colpitts was born and raised in Saskatchewan. She obtained BSc and MSc degrees in biochemistry at the University of Regina, where she became fascinated by viruses and how viruses hijack host cells. Dr. Colpitts obtained her PhD in virology from the University of Alberta in Edmonton, where she trained with Dr. Luis Schang and characterized the mechanisms of novel broad-spectrum antivirals targeting the entry of unrelated viruses. She then moved to the lab of Dr. Thomas Baumert at the University of Strasbourg (France) to focus on hepatitis B and C virus entry and to identify novel antiviral strategies targeting entry of these viruses. Most recently, she has been working with Dr. Greg Towers at University College London (UK) to understand how hepatitis C virus uses a host protein, cyclophilin A, to evade intrinsic cellular antiviral responses. Dr. Colpitts is now an assistant professor in the Department of Biomedical and Molecular Sciences at Queen’s University in Kingston.

Undergraduate students

Yilun Huang

Yilun is a third-year student at Queen’s University, majoring in Life Sciences, and minoring in Mathematics. She holds a great passion for biomedical research. Her fourth-year independent project will focus on targeting cellular factors to inhibit coronavirus replication.

Caleb Morin

Caleb is a third-year life sciences specialization student from Calgary, Alberta.  He has previous research experience in epigenetic tumour heterogeneity at the Arnie Charbonneau Cancer Institute at the University of Calgary.  Caleb is also a current student supervisor working at Annual Giving at Queen’s University where he runs the statistics portfolio.  He is eager to build on his past research experience and non-research skills to investigate cyclophilin inhibitors as a potential coronavirus antiviral strategy.

Celine Tsai

Celine is a third year student majoring in Life Sciences and minoring in Statistics. Her interest in microbiology and virology was piqued by the movies Contagion and World War Z. Since then, she has always been curious about how viruses evade cellular antiviral response. As a result, she is currently investigating the role of cyclophilin A in regulating protein kinase R to develop a new understanding of PKR-dependent antiviral responses. When not in the lab or in class, Celine can be found in the kitchen trying out new recipes, playing tennis and volleyball, and writing poetry.