The Marchetti Lab (Fall 2023)

Adrian Adrian Marchetti, Principal Investigator
2023 – present, Professor, University of North Carolina-Chapel Hill
2018 – 2022, Associate Professor, University of North Carolina-Chapel Hill
2011 – 2017, Assistant Professor, University of North Carolina-Chapel Hill
2005 – 2010, Post-doc/Research Scientist, University of Washington
2005, Ph. D, University of British Columbia
1998, B. Sc., McGill University
My outlook on life is whenever you are in doubt, just climb higher (which is meant to be taken literally or metaphorically depending on the situation).
Raquel Flynn, Postdoctoral Research Fellow
2023 – present, Postdoctoral Researcher, University of North Carolina-Chapel Hill
2019 – 2023, Ph.D., University of Cape Town, South Africa
2017 – 2019, M.Sc., University of Cape Town, South Africa
2015, B.Sc. (Hons), University of Cape Town, South Africa
Raquel is curious of the role that phytoplankton play in the marine nitrogen and carbon cycle, particularly in trying to understand how much carbon export they account for. She thinks that the small eukaryotes have been overlooked, and may be more important for carbon export than previously thought. Needless to say, lab meetings can get a little heated when we discuss which group of phytoplankton contributes most to carbon export.
Johnson Lin, Graduate Student
2021 – present, Ph.D. candidate, University of North Carolina-Chapel Hill
2018 – 2021, M.Sc., University of North Carolina-Chapel Hill
2017, B. Sc. University of California, Santa Barbara
Johnson loves watching things grow and believes that certain species of Pseudo-nitzschia need to step up their game and get gains because they look too skinny. His interests include phytoplankton and microbial communities, and hopes to shrink down to their size one day and introduce them to the wonderful creation of Açaí bowls. It’s true these fruit bowls are important to your health, although so is oxygen!
Meredith Meyer, Graduate Student
2020 – present, Ph.D. candidate, University of North Carolina-Chapel Hill
2017, B.Sc. College of William and Mary
Meredith’s interests include running, exploring the North Carolina outdoors, and playing with her dogs. She loves studying phytoplankton, carbon cycling, and how climate change impacts the ocean. Personally, I think diatoms make better pets than dogs given they can feed themselves and don’t require being taken out for walks.
Prisca Lim, Graduate Student
2023 – present, M.Sc candidate, University of North Carolina-Chapel Hill
2022, B.Sc., University of North Carolina-Chapel Hill

Prisca is drawn to water because they used to be a competitive swimmer. Now they loves scuba diving and learning cool things about the ocean! Prisca takes solace in the fact that they can out swim a hungry dinoflagellate.
Personal Website
Emily Speciale, Graduate Student
2023 – present, M.Sc. candidate, University of North Carolina-Chapel Hill
2022, B.Sc. University of Miami
After working with fish and realizing they’re too smelly, Emily is excited to explore the world of phytoplankton and to start as a PhD student in the Marchetti Lab in the Fall. Outside of work, you can find her hiking, spending time with loved ones, or petting any cat she sees.
Margarita Lankford, Graduate Student
2024 – present, M.Sc. candidate, University of North Caroline-Chapel Hill
1999 – 2004, PhD University of Massachusetts-Amherst
1993 – 1995, M.A. University of Massachusetts-Amherst
After spending years optimizing global return on assets for large banks and modeling disease burden for health management companies, Margarita decided to dive into the microscopic world of marine phytoplankton. She is on the quest to find out if the diatoms of Galápagos Islands give “Thumbs Up” rating to their nutrient delivery system, and which localities around the islands are making this year’s Top 10 “Best places to raise an autotroph family”.
Vincent White, Undergraduate Researcher
2022 – present, B.Sc. in Chemistry with a Marine Sciences minor, University of North Carolina-Chapel Hill
As an angler, Vincent has a particular interest in harmful algal blooms (HABs) and the phytoplankton which cause them. Overall he greatly enjoys his research in the lab and would say that joining the lab has been one of the greatest decisions of his undergraduate career! (p.s. Vincent really wrote this, I swear!)
Deron-Jay Bakker, Undergraduate Researcher
2019 – present, B.Sc. in Biology, University of North Carolina-Chapel Hill
Deron-Jay’s interests include scuba diving, growing plants, and spending time with his dog, Mozzarella. He grew up spending lots of time in the water, mostly kayaking and swimming, which helped him foster a love for marine science. His favorite species of phytoplankton is E. huxleyi. The goal is to turn DJ’s green thumb into a brown one.

This could be you! Click here to find out about joining the lab.
Previous lab members (and where they are now):
Maxfield Palmer, Undergraduate Researcher 2021-2023 (Bridge to PhD fellow, Columbia University)
Sarah Andrew, Post-doctoral Fellow 2019-2022
Olivia Torano, Lab Manager/Research Scientist 2018-2022 (Environmental Protection Agency)
Se Hyeon Jang, Post-doctoral Fellow 2020-2021 (Assistant Professor at Chonnam National University, Republic of Korea)
Carly Moreno, Ph.D. Student 2012-2020 (Post-doc at NYU Abu Dhabi)
Emily Pierce, Undergraduate Researcher 2017-2020 (Graduate Student in Schnetzer Lab at NC State)
Maggie Bernish, Undergraduate Researcher 2017-2020
Logan Whitehouse, Research Scientist/Rotating Graduate Student 2019 (UNC BBSP program)
Weida Gong, Ph.D. Student 2014-2019 (Bioinformatics Specialist at Lineberger Cancer Center)
Erika Neave, M. Sc. Student 2017-2019 (Research Scientist at Liverpool John Moores University)
Rob Lampe, M. Sc. Student 2015-2018 (Ph.D. Student at UCSD)
Doug Rouse, Undergraduate Researcher 2017-2018
Gustavo Hernandez, Undergraduate Researcher 2017-2018
Natalie Cohen, Ph. D. Student 2011-2017 (Assistant Professor at Skidaway Institute of Oceanography)
Liah McPherson, Undergraduate Researcher 2016-2017
Nathalie Eegholm, Undergraduate Researcher 2016-2017
Xavi Velasquez, Undergraduate Researcher 2016-2017
Sarah Davies, Post-doctoral Fellow, 2014-2017 (Assistant Professor at Boston University)
Jacob Dixon, Undergraduate Researcher 2015-2016
Vicky Tsakas, Undergraduate Researcher 2015-2016
Brooke Stemple, Undergraduate Researcher 2015 (graduate student at Notre Dame University)
Kelsey Ellis, Undergraduate Researcher 2012-2013, M. Sc. Student 2013-2015, Lab Manager 2017 (works at Albemarle-Pamlico National Estuary Partnership)
Wilton Burns, Undergraduate Researcher/Research Scientist 2013-2015 (graduate student at UVermont)
Spencer Nelson, Undergraduate Researcher 2014-2015
Stephanie Smith, Undergraduate Researcher 2014-2015 (Graduate Student in Septer Lab)
Dylan Catlett, Undergraduate Researcher 2013-2014 (graduate student at UCSB)
Christian Stackhouse, Researcher Scientist 2013-2014 (graduate student in Neurobiology at UAB)
Jamal Benjamin, Undergraduate Researcher 2013-2014 (globe trotter)
Harry Masters, Undergraduate Researcher/Research Scientist 2012-2013 (dive bum in Bermuda)
Daniel Karr, Undergraduate Researcher, 2012-2013
Michael Clear, Undergraduate Researcher, 2012 (graduate student at Old Miss)
Kimberly Delong, Undergraduate Researcher, 2011-2012, Lab Manager 2015-2017 (graduate student at UC Santa Cruz)
Elyse Wills, Undergraduate Researcher, 2011