Rollins-Smith Lab Members

Current Lab Members

  • Louise A. Rollins-Smith, PhD

    Professor
    Department of Pathology, Microbiology and Immunology
    Professor
    Department of Biological Sciences
    Professor
    Department of Pediatrics
    Phone
    615-343-4119
    Office Address
    Vanderbilt University Medical Center
    1161 21st Avenue South
    Medical Center North
    Room / Suite
    A5119
    Nashville
    Tennessee
    37232

    Dr. Rollins-Smith received her Ph.D. in Zoology from the University of Minnesota, did postdoctoral research at the University of Rochester, and came to Vanderbilt in 1984. She is currently Professor of Pathology, Microbiology and Immunology and of Pediatrics in the School of Medicine and Professor of Biological Sciences in Vanderbilt University. She takes great pleasure in the beauty of nature, especially the profound beauty of developing and adult amphibians. She has studied disease and immunity in amphibians for more than 40 years.

    https://wag.app.vanderbilt.edu/PublicPage/Faculty/Details/29102

    https://www.vumc.org/viiii/person/louise-rollins-smith-phd

  • Laura K. Reinert, MS

    Lab Manager
    Department of Pathology, Microbiology and Immunology
    Lab Phone
    615-343-9449
    Lab Address
    Vanderbilt University Medical Center
    1161 21st Avenue South
    Medical Center North
    Room / Suite
    A5116
    Nashville
    Tennessee
    37232

    Laura attended Austin Peay State University where she received her Bachelor's degree in general biology.  She came to work in the Rollins-Smith Lab shortly afterward and then went on to earn a Master's degree in Laboratory Investigation at Vanderbilt University while continuing to work in the "frog lab."  She's been a proud member of the Rollins-Smith Lab for quite some time and loves the work they do.

  • Emily H. Le Sage, PhD

    Post-Doctoral Fellow
    Department of Pathology, Microbiology and Immunology
    Lab Phone
    615-343-9449
    Lab Address
    Vanderbilt University Medical Center
    1161 21st Avenue South
    Medical Center North
    Room / Suite
    A5116
    Nashville
    Tennessee
    37232

    Emily joined the Rollins-Smith Lab in 2017 as a postdoctoral researcher on the Department of Defense SERDP project looking at the effects of climate change on amphibian disease susceptibility. She received her PhD in Zoology in 2016 from Washington State University, where she was advised by Dr. Erica Crespi. She finished her BS in Zoology from Michigan State University in 2010.

  • Mitchell J. Le Sage, MS

    Research Assistant II
    Department of Pathology, Microbiology and Immunology
    Lab Phone
    615-343-9449
    Lab Address
    Vanderbilt University Medical Center
    1161 21st Avenue South
    Medical Center North
    Room / Suite
    A5116
    Nashville
    Tennessee
    37232
  • Kaitlyn N. Linney

    Undergraduate Student
    Department of Pathology, Microbiology and Immunology

    Kaitlyn has worked in the Rollins-Smith Lab for 2 semesters and has returned "virtually" this fall.  Even though she isn't working on site, she continues to research the literature and analyze data for her project which examines differences in virulence among different isolates of Bd.  She plans to study veterinary medicine upon her graduation in 2022.

Former Lab Members

  • Douglas C. Woodhams, PhD

    Former Post-Doctoral Fellow
    Department of Microbiology and Immunology

    Doug Woodhams completed his PhD at James Cook University in Townsville, Queensland, Australia in 2003.  After completing his post-doctoral fellowship in the Rollins-Smith Lab, his career took him around the world from Tennessee, to Virginia, to Switzerland, Colorado, and finally to Massachusetts where he is an assistant professor at the University of Massachusetts, Boston.

    Photo credit: Woodhams Lab, University of Massachusetts, Boston

  • Jeremy P. Ramsey, PhD

    Former Graduate Student
    Department of Pathology, Microbiology and Immunology

    Jeremy currently works at Synergy Medical Education. The company works with various medical and research companies to assist them in the development of materials related to drug or product development, as well as public outreach and education. 

  • James D. Pask, PhD

    Former Graduate Student
    Department of Pathology, Microbiology and Immunology

    Jim Pask earned his PhD in the Rollins-Smith Laboratory and went on to teach at Bethel University in McKenzie, TN.  He returned to teach at Vanderbilt University and is now Senior Lecturer in the Department of Biological Sciences.

    Photo credit: Department of Biological Sciences, Vanderbilt University

  • Whitney M. Holden, PhD

    Former Graduate Student
    Department of Pathology, Microbiology and Immunology

    Whitney Holden is the Life Science Specialist at the Arkansas School for Mathematics, Sciences, and the Arts. She teaches classes like Science of Biology, Microbiology, and Infectious Disease in History and Culture, while mentoring students in individual life science capstone research projects. Several of her students have competed among the best in the world at the International Science and Engineering Fair. Whitney also co-directs three outreach programs: Advanced Biology Plus, a training program for AP Biology teachers; the Arkansas Summer Research Institute, a professional skills workshop for STEM undergraduate students; and the Biomedical Sciences Summer Institute, a program for high school students interested in microbiology, epidemiology, forensic science, and infectious disease. Whitney loves to teach so much that she even has her own YouTube channel, Biology Professor, which has almost 40,000 subscribers and 4 million views from around the world. You can learn more about Whitney and her work on Twitter (@DrWhitneyHolden) or by visiting https://www.youtube.com/BiologyProfessor.

  • J. Scott Fites, PhD

    Former Graduate Student
    Department of Biological Sciences

    After graduating Vanderbilt, Scott has completed postdoctoral training in the lab of Bruce Klein at the University of Wisconsin-Madison. Scott's postdoctoral work has widely focused on immunity against fungal diseases. He has worked with human and mouse immunology and also worked with a vaccination study of white nose syndrome in bats. While Scott has worked on projects focused on vaccines, cytokine signaling, leukocyte migration, and genetic susceptibility to fungal infection, his main focus has been on neutrophils. Scott has characterized the antifungal functions of a poorly understood population of neutrophils that acquire dendritic cell features and functions. Since leaving the Rollins-Smith lab, Scott has earned 3 fellowships and published 12 peer-reviewed publications and 2 book chapters at the University of Wisconsin-Madison.

    Photo credit: VUMC Reporter, 2013

  • Savannah Alford, BS

    Former Undergraduate Student
    Department of Pathology, Microbiology and Immunology

    Savannah Alford worked in the Rollins-Smith Lab as a student researcher before graduating from Vanderbilt University.  She went on to attend the University of Tennessee, Knoxville, to study veterinary medicine.

  • F. Ann Sobell, BS

    Former Undergraduate Student
    Department of Pathology, Microbiology and Immunology

    Ann Sobell worked in the Rollins-Smith Lab as both an animal care technician and researcher.  She graduated from Vanderbilt University and is now pursuing her medical degree at Central Michigan University College of Medicine, class of 2023.

  • Vishvaas Ravikumar, BS

    Former Undergraduate Student
    Department of Pathology, Microbiology and Immunology

    Vishvaas worked in the Rollins-Smith Lab as a researcher for several semesters.  After graduating from Vanderbilt, he enrolled in medical school at the University of Nevada, Las Vegas, School of Medicine.

  • Megan Van Geffen, BS

    Former Undergraduate Student
    Department of Pathology, Microbiology and Immunology

    Megan worked as an undergraduate researcher for several semesters in the Rollins-Smith Lab.  After graduating from Vanderbilt University, she went on to attend North Carolina State College of Veterinary Medicine.

  • Andrea Shiakolas, BS

    Former Undergraduate Student
    Department of Pathology, Microbiology and Immunology

    Andrea worked in the Rollins-Smith Lab as a researcher before graduating from Vanderbilt University. She went on to work at the NIH for a few years before returning to Vanderbilt University Medical Center to pursue her PhD in the Department of Pathology, Microbiology and Immunology.

    Photo credit: Georgiev Laboratory, Vanderbilt University Medical Center

  • Jack A. Lee, DVM

    Former Undergraduate Student
    Department of Pathology, Microbiology and Immunology

    Jack Lee spent several semesters as an undergraduate researcher in the Rollins-Smith Lab.  He graduated from Vanderbilt University and went on to complete his degree in veterinary medicine at the University of Tennessee College of Veterinary Medicine.  He now works at the Colorado State University College of Veterinary Medicine. 

    Photo credit: Colorado State University Veterinary Teaching Hospital

  • Timothy M. Chappell, BS

    Former Undergraduate Student
    Department of Pathology, Microbiology and Immunology

    Tim Chappell worked in the lab for several years as both an animal care technician and a researcher.  Upon graduating from Vanderbilt University, he went on to enroll in a PhD program at the University of Georgia.

    Photo credit: Parrott Lab, University of Georgia

  • Megan Mitchell, BS

    Former Undergraduate Student
    Department of Pathology, Microbiology and Immunology

    Megan was an undergraduate animal technician who maintained the colony of leopard frog metamorphs.  She graduated from Vanderbilt in 2020 and will be pursuing her PhD.

  • Allison Game, BS

    Former Undergraduate Student
    Department of Pathology, Microbiology and Immunology

    Allison took care of the Rollins-Smith amphibian colony and also worked as a researcher in the lab.  She graduated from Vanderbilt University in 2019 and is currently applying to medical school.

  • Jean Wu, BS

    Former Undergraduate Student
    Department of Pathology, Microbiology and Immunology

    Jean Wu is a former undergraduate who worked in the lab for several semesters as a researcher.  Upon graduating from Vanderbilt, she is now enrolled in the Vanderbilt School of Nursing to pursue her degree as a nurse practitioner.

  • Joey Bonnaire

    Former Undergraduate Student
    Department of Pathology, Microbiology and Immunology

    Joey worked 2 summers in the lab as an animal care technician and researcher.  He currently attends the University of Miami and is planning to enroll in medical school afterward.

    Photo credit: University of Miami

  • Brady J. Inman, MS

    Former Researcher
    Department of Pathology, Microbiology and Immunology

    Brady worked in the lab during the summer of 2018 helping with animal husbandry and research.  He now attends the University of Massachusetts, Boston, and is working on his PhD with Doug Woodhams as his mentor. 

    Photo credit: Woodhams Lab, University of Massachusetts, Boston

  • Robert M. Brucker, PhD

    Former Graduate Student
    Department of Microbiology and Immunology

    Rob worked in the Rollins-Smith Lab for a short time but went on to complete his PhD in the Department of Biological Sciences at Vanderbilt.  He is now a Rowland Junior Fellow at the Rowland Institute at Harvard University. 

    Photo credit: The Rowland Institute at Harvard, Harvard University

  • Shawna completed a graduate student rotation project in the Rollins-Smith Lab.  She went on to pursue her PhD in the laboratory of Mark Boothby in the Department of Pathology, Microbiology and Immunology and plans to graduate in the coming year.

  • Jessica Van Meter DNP MSN RN APN-BC CCRN A-EMT worked as a researcher in the lab after graduating from Tulane University.  She is now a Flight Nurse with Vanderbilt LifeFlight, serves as faculty in the International Division of Emergency Medicine, teaches global health at Vanderbilt School of Nursing, and serves as the Programme Director for a Bachelor's in Emergency Nursing Program in Guyana, South America. She was honored with the Global Impact in Nursing Award at the United Nations and the Vanderbilt School of Nursing Alumni Award for National Leadership. 

  • Emma began working in the Rollins-Smith Lab as an animal care technician and later as a researcher.  After completing her  undergraduate degree at Vanderbilt University, she went on to earn her medical degree from Vanderbilt University Medical School in 2010.  She is now a general surgeon at St Mark's Hospital in Salt Lake City, Utah.

    Photo credit: US News and World Report