About the organizers

Monica Wu

Monica is a graduate student in Dr. Julie Claycomb’s lab at the University of Toronto. Her PhD thesis involves characterizing a novel small RNA pathway and the impact it has on gene regulation, particularly at the mRNA level, using the nematode C. elegans. She has come to appreciate the diversity in RNA-mediated regulatory roles and believes that TRenD will not only be a great learning experience, but will be an amazing opportunity to foster discussion and collaborations.

Miranda Wang

Miranda is an M.Sc. candidate in Dr. Olivia Rissland’s lab at the University of Toronto. She is studying post-transcriptional regulation of mRNPs during Drosophila development. While she is both excited and maybe a little anxious about organizing such an important event, Miranda truly looks forward to connecting with other RNA enthusiasts and talking about new and innovative RNA research at TREnD.

Amanda Charlesworth


Amanda is a M.Sc. student in the Department of Molecular Genetics at the University of Toronto. Amanda is currently working in Dr. Julie Claycomb’s lab examining the essential Argonaute CSR-1 in the mighty nematode C. elegans. While she is relatively new to the RNA field, she believes collaboration is an essential part of moving science forward, and is excited to help create a new opportunity for labs in the region to learn from one another.

Ashrut Narula

Ashrut Headshot

Ashrut is an M.Sc. candidate at Dr. Olivia Rissland’s lab at the University of Toronto. His graduate work looks at the contributions of RNA coding sequence to human transcript stability on a global scale. Ashrut is motivated to organise TREnD 2016 as a platform for young trainees like himself to share ideas with and receive critical input from the RNA research community.

Chris Wedeles


Chris is a PhD candidate in Dr. Julie Claycomb’s lab in the Department of Molecular Genetics at the University of Toronto. He is interested in understanding how small-RNAs and chromatin modifications intersect to influence transgenerational epigenetic inheritance, using C. elegans as a model system. Chris anticipates that TREnD will be an intellectually stimulating symposium, and hopes that it will foster new collaborations between researchers who approach similar questions from unique perspectives.