Principal Investigator



Office Phone: (213) 740-4205
Office Location: GER 306D
Fax: (213) 740-4787
Lab Location: GER 304

Christian Pike, PhD

Principal Investigator


BS, University of Southern California, 1985
PhD, University of California, Irvine, 1994

Christian Pike is a product of Southern California, being born and raised in Laguna Beach, then earning his BS from USC and his PhD from UC Irvine. He returned to USC in 1999 as a faculty member at the USC Leonard Davis School of Gerontology. Outside of his duties as a professor and PI of the Pike Lab, Pike is an avid flyfisherman and ocean kayaker.


Research Staff


Amy Christensen, PhD

Research Assistant Professor of Gerontology


B.S. University of California, Los Angeles, 2005
Ph.D. University of California, Los Angeles, 2012

Amy was born and raised in San Diego, CA. Her doctoral work at UCLA involved looking at the molecular mechanisms of membrane estrogen receptor signaling in the context of female sexual behavior. Her current work focuses on Alzheimer’s disease in females and the utility of hormone therapy. When she’s not working in the Pike lab, she likes to run half marathons and watch lots of football (Go Chargers!).

Postdoctoral Scientists


Terri Stephen, PhD

Postdoctoral Scientist


BS, University of Aberdeen, United Kingdom, 2011
PhD, University College London, United Kingdom, 2016

Terri was born in South Africa and moved to Scotland as a teenager. Her doctoral work at UCL assessed the importance of mitochondrial trafficking in astrocytes. During her postdoctoral appointment at Eli Lilly she looked at how synapses are affected in Alzheimer’s disease and also ran pre-clinical drug trials. Her current work focuses on microglia and sex difference in Alzheimer’s disease. When she’s not working in the Pike lab, she likes to stay active (preferably at the beach) and fill up her passport with stamps.


Elizabeth Nguyen, PhD

Postdoctoral Fellow


PhD, University of Cincinnati, College of Medicine, Cincinnati, OH, 2019
BA, Reed College, Portland, OR, 2012

Elizabeth was born in Bien Hoa, Vietnam and grew up in Los Angeles. Her doctoral work at University of Cincinnati focused on sex differences in stress responsivity and glucocorticoid signaling in stress-related disorders (e.g., Alzheimer’s disease). Her work in the Pike Lab focuses on the effects of sexual differentiation on AD risk, progression, and treatment. Outside of lab, she enjoys dancing, art, and exploring the world through food!


Tomomitsu Iida, PhD

Postdoctoral Scientist


BS, Tohoku University, Japan 2012
MS, Tohoku University, Japan 2014
PhD, Tohoku University, Japan 2018

Tomomitsu was born and raised in Japan. His doctoral work evaluated the effects of histamine on microglial functions using primary cell culture methodology and a depression model. In the Pike Lab, he is investigating how sex differences and APOE genotype affect microglial functions. Outside of the lab, he enjoys working out and exploring new experiences since it is his first time living outside of Japan.

Research Staff


Wenjie Qian

Research Lab Technician


BS, Huazhong Agricultural University, China, 2016
MS, Drexel University, Philadelphia, 2018

Wenjie was born and raised in Wuhan, China. She received her master’s degree in Biomedical Engineering from Drexel University. Her current work at Pike Lab focuses on metabolic outcomes and astrocytes in Alzheimer’s disease. Outside of research, she enjoys hiking and visiting interesting museums.

Graduate Students


Jiahui Liu

Graduate Student


BS, Peking University, Beijing, China, 2014

Jiahui was born and raised in Xi’an, China. She received her bachelor’s degrees in Biological Sciences and Psychology from Peking University. Her current work in the Pike Lab is focused on studying the role of TLR4 in obesity-induced neural impairments. In her free time, she enjoys watching movies and snowboarding.

Undergraduate Researchers


Sydney Lance

Undergraduate Research Assistant

Sydney is from Prior Lake, Minnesota. She’s currently a junior at USC studying neuroscience with a minor in gerontology. Right now her work focuses on peripheral inflammation and its role in Alzheimer’s. Outside of the lab, Sydney enjoys playing rugby and trying new foods around LA.


Sharanya Suresh

Undergraduate Research Assistant

Sharanya was born and raised in Portland, Oregon. She is a junior studying Neuroscience and minoring in Ethics and Moral Philosophy. Her research currently involves characterizing the plaque environment and investigating the relationship between this environment and risk factors like sex and APOE genotype. In her free time, Sharanya likes to dabble in graphic design and explore LA.


Undergraduate Researchers

Meghan Brown (2008-11)

Reem Elteriefi (2009)

Antoine Ganivet (2016-17)

Gina Gwag (2008)

Michael Halyko (2008)

Tina Huynh (2006-07)

Kurt Ibaraki (2015-17)

Joanne Jiangg (2014-17)

Whitney Kang (1999-2001)

Mehul Khetrapal (2017-2018)

Sara Kreimer (2006-07)

Grace Lee (2012-13)

Daniella Lent (2012-15)

Connor Logan (2014)

Kelly McMullan (2006)

Niraj Mehta (2003)

Kathleen Moloney (2010-11)

Anita Nath (2013)

Thuzar Shin (1999-2002)

Christina Sisliyan (2016-17)

Shannon Sullivan (2010-11)

Taya Varteresian (2001-04)

Holly Villamagna (2007-10)

April Wong (2008)

Hilary Wright (2012)

Katherine Young (2014-16)

Shirley Yu (2007)

Amanda Zhou (2014-17)

Graduate Students

Radha Aras (2000-06)

Jenna Carroll (2004-09)

Myriam Cordey (2001-05)

Ausha Jayarman (2006-10)

Alexandra Moser (2013-18)

Vi Ngyuen (2001-05)

Emily Rosario (2002-07)

Postdoctoral Scientists

Aaron Barnett (2014-15)

Anna Barron (2009-10)

Ausha Jayarman (2012-14)

Joo-Won Lee (2011-13)

Martin Ramsden (2001-04)

Emily Rosario (2008-10)

Camille Sample (2017-2018)

Rebecca Vest (2011-12)

Mingzhong Yao (2002-09)