Lab Members

Principal Investigator

Principal Investigator: Dr. J. Brandon Dixon

Associate Chair for Undergraduate Studies and Professor 

Woodruff Faculty Fellow
George W. Woodruff School of Mechanical Engineering
Parker H. Petit Institute for Bioengineering and Bioscience
Wallace H. Coulter Department of Biomedical Engineering


Degrees: B.S., Biomedical Engineering, Texas A&M University, 2001
Ph.D., Biomedical Engineering, Texas A&M University, 2006
Hometown: Round Rock, TX

Google Scholar Profile

Dr. Brandon Dixon is a Professor and Woodruff Faculty Fellow, as well as the current Associate Chair for Undergraduate Studies in the Woodruff School of Mechanical Engineering at Georgia Tech. Dr. Dixon joined Georgia Tech in 2009 as an Assistant Professor, and has since grown his research laboratory which focuses on developing engineered approaches to understanding and treating diseases of the lymphatic system. Prior to Georgia Tech, he was a post-doctoral fellow at Ecole Polytechnique Federal de Lausanne in Switzerland doing research on lymphatic biology of lipid transport. Brandon received his Ph.D. in Biomedical Engineering in 2006 from Texas A&M University where he developed an imaging system for measuring lymphatic flow and estimating wall shear stress in contracting lymphatic vessels. He also received his bachelor’s degree from the same university in 2001.  His research has been funded by the NIH, NSF, Gates Foundation, Department of Defense, the Georgia Research Alliance, the American Heart Association, and various private foundations. He is a recipient of the NSF Career Award and the NIH Pathway to Independence Award. He is also a co-founder of LymphaTech, a start-up launched from Georgia Tech focused on the development of diagnostic technologies for lymphedema.


Current Lab Members

Research Faculty


Zhanna Nepiyushchikh (2014 – present)

Degrees: M.D., State Medical Academy, St. Petersburg, 1996
Hometown: St. Petersburg, Russia
Research Area: Lymphatic contractility, reactive oxygen species, immunophilins, 


Pubmed Profile




Eleftheria (Ria) Michalaki (2019 – present)

Degrees: Ph.D., Chemical Engineering, Stanford, 2019
M.S., Chemical Engineering, Stanford, 2016
B.S., Chemical Engineering, University of Patras, 2014

Hometown: Iraklion, Greece

Research Area: Osteoarthritis, traumatic brain injury (TBI), lipid nanoparticles, lymphedema
Past Research: microfluidics, effect of fluid flow on LECs, calcium dynamics


Graduate Students


Lauren Liebman (2018 – present)

Ph.D. Candidate in Biomedical Engineering
Degrees: B.S.E., Biomedical Engineering, B.Mus. Music Performance, University of Michigan, 2018
Hometown: Wheaton, IL

Research Area: Lymphangiogenesis, cancer, and radiotherapy
Past Research: prostate cancer, lipid metabolism, cartilage repair, drug resistance pathways



Likhit Nayak (2018 – present)

Ph.D. Student in Bioengineering (Mechanical Engineering)
Coadvised with Dr. Rudy Gleason
Degrees: B.S., Biomedical Engineering, Georgia Tech, 2018
Hometown: Bhubaneswar, India

Research Area: Machine learning, point-cloud anthropomorphic data analysis, lymphedema diagnostics



Yarelis Gonzalez-Vargas (2019 – present)

Ph.D. Candidate in Biomedical Engineering
Degrees: B.S., Biology, University of Puerto Rico-Mayagüez, 2019
                 B.S., Microbiology, University of Puerto Rico-Mayagüez, 2019
Hometown: Quebradillas, Puerto Rico

Research Area: Lymphatic malformations, lymphangiogenesis, biomaterials, tissue engineering
Past Research: diabetes, microbiology



Young Jae Ryu (2020 – present)

Ph.D. Student in Bioengineering (Mechanical Engineering)
Degrees: B.S., Mechanical Engineering, Columbia University, 2020
Hometown: Culver City, California

Research Area: Lymphatic biomechanics, computational modeling
Past Research: Rehabilitation robotics, otolaryngology



Nishone Thompson (2022 – present)

MD/Ph.D. Student in Biomedical Engineering
Degrees: B.S., Biology, Morgan State University, 2017
Hometown: Mandeville, Jamaica

Research Area: lymphangiogenesis, lymphatic endothelial cells
Past Research: gout, sickle cell disease



Shao-Yun Hsu (2022 – present)

Ph.D. Student in Biomedical Engineering
Degrees: M.D., Medicine, Kaohsiung Medical University, Taiwan
Hometown: Taiwan

Research Area: microsurgery, breast reconstruction, lymphedema, tissue engineering
Past Research: microsurgery, breast reconstruction, lymphedema




MS Students

Yanina Kuzminich (2018 – 2020), M.S. in Bioengineering, Current Position: Ph.D. in Bioengineering advised by Dr. James Dahlman, Georgia Institute of Technology

Ryan Akin (2012-2013), M.S. in Mechanical Engineering, Current Position: Consultant, Accenture

Jamie Huffman (2010 – 2011), M.S. in Mechanical Engineering, Current Position: Director, Vehicle Operations and Software Automation, SpaceX