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Meet The Team

Principal Investigator


Elizabeth (Lizzy) Draganova, Ph.D.

Role: Principal Investigator/Assistant Professor

Research interests: antivirals, capsid assembly, light scattering 

When I'm not in lab: My two children keep me entertained (moms can science, too!)

Alternate reality career: Nancy Drew

Pronouns: she/hers

Research Specialists


Neha Mohanty

Role: Research Specialist I

Research interests: herpesvirus nuclear egress, light scattering, antivirals

When I'm not in lab: I enjoy trying new restaurants and foods, going to the beach and the mountains, going to concerts, and spending time with my cat

Alternate reality career: Detective!

Pronouns: she/hers


Rachel Hill 

Role: Research Specialist I

Research interests: Genetics, enzyme inhibition

When I'm not in lab: I like to do puzzles, try new restaurants, listen to true crime podcasts, and brake for squirrels. I also enjoy playing Animal Crossing and Minecraft.

Alternate reality career: True Crime Podcaster or Veterinarian

Pronouns: she/hers


Maria Muhammad

Role: Research Specialist I

Research interests: any research in biology, biochemistry, and chemistry. 

When I'm not in lab: I like reading science fiction novels or completing jigsaw puzzles of 1,000 pieces or more.

Alternate reality career: My interest has always been in science/medicine, though in alternate reality I think I would pursue a PhD and solely focus on research instead of becoming a physician

Pronouns: she/hers


Cameron Russell Graduate Student

Role: BCDB Graduate Student

Research interests: structural biology, viral replication, protein/protein interactions

When I'm not in lab: I enjoy hanging out with my cat Poppy, cooking Cajun foods, hiking nature trails, and trying new restaurants across Atlanta!

Alternate reality career: Zookeeper

Pronouns: he/his


Amal Panjwani

Role: Undergraduate Researcher

Research interests: herpesvirus nuclear egress, light scattering

When I'm not in lab: I like to read, watch real estate TV shows on Netflix, study, try different restaurants around Atlanta, spend time with my family, and travel.

Alternate reality career: Astronaut or accountant

Pronouns: she/hers

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Ayla Khan

Role: Undergraduate Researcher

Research interests: Viral replication, genetics, neuroscience

When I'm not in lab: I love discovering new music, reading thrillers, spending time with my family, and exploring Atlanta with friends!

Alternate reality career: Lawyer or therapist

Pronouns: she/hers

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Jalen Harris

Role: Undergraduate Researcher

Research interests: This is my first research experience so I am still figuring out what interests me, but in general I have always been fascinated by viruses, diseases, and vaccines!

When I'm not in lab: I enjoy fitness/weight-lifting, singing (I am currently in AHANA A Cappella), music, and social media.

Alternate reality career: Influencer/Youtuber

Pronouns: He/him

Interested in joining us?

The Draganova Lab is a part of the BCDB and MMG Graduate Programs at Emory

Send an email to

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