Principal Investigator

Patricia Ribeiro Pereira, Ph.D.

Assistant Professor of Radiology

Patricia’s CV can be found here: CV

Dr. Pereira has been an Assistant Professor at the Department of Radiology, Washington University School Of Medicine since June 2021. Before that, she completed a Ph.D. in medicinal chemistry from the University of Aveiro and the Faculty of Medicine at the University of Coimbra, both in Portugal. She also worked as a visiting scientist at the Institute for Materials Research and Testing in Berlin and Hunter College in New York. After her Ph.D., she was a Postdoctoral Fellow and Research Associate in the Department of Radiology at Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center. She applied radiolabeled antibodies and small molecules to determine biological mechanisms by which some patients do not respond to and/or develop resistance to cancer therapies.

Patricia’s research program at the Mallinckrodt Institute of Radiology centers on tumor-targeted multimodal imaging techniques, in concert with complementary genetic and proteomic approaches, to investigate how regulation of membrane receptors can function in tumors and their microenvironment at the most basic level and at the level of drug resistance. To date, her research has resulted in 40 peer-reviewed papers (7 of them as corresponding author), 2 book chapters, >20 oral communications, and >50 poster presentations in chemistry, molecular imaging, and cancer biology.

Postdoc Research Associate

Sandeep Surendra Panikar, PhD

Dr. Sandeep Surendra Panikar received his Ph.D. Degree in Productive Biotechnology from CIATEJ-CONACYT, Mexico, where he started working with the development of nanomaterials for Upconversion-based cancer theranostics and Surface-enhanced Raman spectroscopy (SERS) sensors for personalized cancer treatment. After receiving his Ph.D. degree, he joined the UNAM, Mexico, as a PostDoctoral Research Associate. His research interests include shark antibodies, phage display technique, drug delivery, theranostics, optical sensors, and NIR mediated bio-imaging. Sandeep joined the Ribeiro Pereira Lab as a PostDoc in August 2021 and is working on multimodal cancer imaging and radiotheranostic approaches for cancer therapy. Apart from lab works, he enjoys traveling to new places, watching documentaries, and cooking.

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Postdoctoral Research Fellow

Emma Brown, PhD

Emma recently completed her PhD at the University of Cambridge, UK. During her time in Cambridge, Emma’s work has focused on using photoacoustic imaging in breast cancer patient-derived xenograft models (PDXs). In the Ribeiro Pereira Lab, she is applying her broad knowledge of molecular imaging and PDX models and use antibody-PET imaging to uncover mechanisms of tumor resistance to immunotherapies. Outside the lab, Emma enjoys singing and is looking forward to being involved in the St Louis music scene.

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Research Technician

Na-Keysha Berry, PreMed Graduate

Na-Keysha Berry is a Pre-Med graduate of The University of Missouri-Columbia. In the Ribeiro Pereira Lab she hopes to learn more about molecular imaging techniques to visualize tumors with the ultimate goal of helping create more effective cancer detection technology, and better the quality of life of cancer patients. Outside of the lab, Na-Keysha is an artist and foodie. She hopes to one day combine the use of her art skills with her plans to pursue a career in the medical field.

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Research Technician

Shayla Shmuel (Starting: August 2022)

Shayla Shmuel is a recent graduate from the George Washington University where she studied biology and economics. The Ribeiro Pereira lab stood out to her because she wants to pursue a career in the medical field and believes that this is the first step to achieving her goal. In this lab, Shayla hopes to work in a team setting and gain as many new experiences as possible. Previously, Shayla has worked with Dr. Pereira on her innovative research targeting and treating breast and gastric cancer at Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center. In her free time, Shayla enjoys traveling and trying new restaurants.

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Undergraduate Student

Zachary Fisher

Zachary Fisher is a junior at WashU studying Biochemistry and Anthropology. In the Ribeiro Pereira Lab, he hopes to gain research experience and explore the biological mechanisms that explain why tumors can develop resistance to various cancer therapies. Zach is ultimately pursuing a career in healthcare and hopes to use the knowledge gained in the Ribeiro Pereira lab to advance cancer therapies and cancer detection technologies. Zach enjoys golfing, photography, and playing the kalimba. 

Undergraduate Student

Abbey Zidel

Abbey Zidel is a sophomore at WashU with a major in Biology. She hopes to gain valuable research experience in the Ribeiro Pereira Lab, studying proteins involved in cancer immunotherapies with the overall goal of improving the efficacy of such immunotherapies. Abbey aims to pursue a career in medicine following her undergraduate education. Outside the lab, she enjoys spending time with her family and friends, trying new restaurants in St. Louis, and traveling.

Undergraduate Student

Will Smith

Will is a first-year at WashU majoring in biomedical engineering. In the Ribeiro Pereira Lab, he hopes to explore the intersections between technology, engineering, and cancer detection. In the future, he plans to improve upon and develop cancer imaging technology. Outside of class, Will likes eating and spending time with friends.  


LaJeanai Keltee (Research Technician 2021-2022)

Alex Mabry (PhD Rotation Student 2022)

Rachel DeWeerd (PhD Rotation Student 2022)

Sean Hui (PhD Rotation Student 2022)

Anusha Chegu (Undergraduate Student 2021-2022)

The Ribeiro Pereira Lab is seeking research technicians, graduate students, and postdoctoral fellows interested in molecular imaging tools to understand tumor biology and response to therapies. We offer as many opportunities as possible to help you develop into a stronger scientist with precious skill sets in biochemistry, medicinal chemistry, and radiochemistry.

Graduate Students in the DBBS program

Bio 200/500 Undergraduate Independent Research