Xinxia Peng, PhD

Xinxia is an Associate Professor of Infectious disease in the Department of Molecular Biomedical Sciences, and a member of NC State Bioinformatics Research Center. He received his PhD in Computational Biology and Bioinformatics and worked as a Bioinformatics Manager at Seattle BioMed (now Center for Infectious Disease Research). In 2008 he joined the University of Washington as a Computational Research Scientist. He was promoted to a Research Assistant Professor in the University of Washington Department of Microbiology in 2012. He joined NC State in July 2016 as Dean’s Faculty Excellence cluster hire, in the field of “Translational Genomics of Infectious Diseases”.

Research Staff
Amy Nipper, MS

Amy received her M.S. in Animal Science with a minor in Physiology at NC State in 2014. She has a strong background in the biological sciences stemming from her B.S. in Biology and minor in Chemistry from Campbell University (’12). She has worked in an animal diagnostic laboratory with NCDA&CS for 3 years before returning back to the world of research. Amy has an interest in Immunology and seeks opportunities to better understand viral infections. She joined the Peng Lab in June of 2018. Outside of the lab, Amy enjoys spending time with her husband, daughter, and two dogs.

  Manfred Meng, PhD

Manfred received his Ph.D. in Molecular Biology at Kunming Institute of Botany, Chinese Academy of Sciences. He has more than 15 years’ research experience and gains expertise in both wet lab (for example, next generation sequencing, genetic engineering) and bioinformatics (for example, whole genome GO annotation, phylogenetic reconstruction). He joined Peng Lab in January 2018 and is a Senior Research Scientist. He is working on lncRNA (long non-coding RNA) CRISPRi screen, in order to identify HIV-resistant lncRNA.

 Graduate Student
  Hayden Brochu, Bioinformatics

After receiving a BS in Chemical Engineering and BS in Physics at NC State, Hayden chose to pursue a career in bioinformatics. He first garnered interest in bioinformatics while doing undergraduate wet lab work, where he helped validate a computational model for ribosome dynamics in E. coli. His mentor, Dr Scott Vu, started RiboWiz Scientific, while Hayden began growing his computational repertoire. Through the Genomic Sciences program at NC State, Hayden has developed expertise in a number of programming languages and bioinformatics tools. Currently a second-year Bioinformatics PhD student, Hayden joined the lab in the summer of 2017. He has used PacBio Iso-Seq to resolve alternative splicing patterns in Rhesus macaque. His current research project consists of further analysis of PacBio Iso-seq data with the goal of improving annotation of rhesus macaque MHC genes. This is part of a collaborative effort to quantify isoform expression of complex immune genes for vaccine development.

  Aiden Jones, Genetics

Aiden received a BS in Biochemistry from Eastern Michigan University, as well as a minor in statistics. Currently she is at North Carolina State University pursuing a PhD in Genetics as well as a MS in Statistics. Her current research focuses are within the fields of genetics and immunology, specifically looking into long non-coding RNAs.

  Ian Huntress, Bioinformatics

Ian completed a BS in Bioinformatics at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute in Troy, NY. He is a carpetbagger for the biotechnology and graduate opportunities of the Research Triangle. Currently visiting the Peng Lab, Ian is searching for the most interesting intersections of machine learning and bioinformatics. His main expertise is in making new mistakes so quickly that he appears to be learning. He applies this stochastic learning to: Bash for sequence analysis, Tensorflow for neural networks, and hot skillets for naan bread.

Graduate Intern  
  Connor Campbell, Analytics
Connor received a BS in Biochemistry from NC State University and subsequently attended graduate school to obtain his MS in Biomedical Sciences from Duke University.  Working as an EMT in Durham County Connor was initially focused on addressing pathophysiology through patient care.  It wasn’t until he realized his appreciation for data analysis that he decided to confront pathophysiology through a computational approach.  Connor joined the lab in November 2017 and utilizes the BRC Cluster here at NCSU to perform data analysis on high throughput sequence data. Connor is proficient in R programming and data analysis in a Linux environment.  He uses these skills to manage data quality and conduct differential expression analysis on high throughput sequence data.
  Ryan Li, Mathematics

Ryan Li is an undergraduate studying Mathematics at NC State University. He is currently doing data analysis at the Peng Lab to gain experience in research and to expand his computational skill set. His current research involves annotating ecRNAs and quantifying their expressions.

  Alexis Johnson, Microbiology

I am a class of 2019 microbiology major. I’m interested in infectious disease research. I plan to get my PhD from NC State in the program for comparative biomedical sciences. I hope to one day research emerging diseases and epidemics at the CDC.

Lab alumni
  • David Lemler, Postdoctoral Fellow, 2016-2017
  • Erin Harrell, Research Associate, 2016-2018
  • Fang Yang, Research Associate, 2017-2018