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Program Outcomes

The Caltech NIH Biotechnology Leadership Pre-doctoral Training Program was established in 2015. 

Biotechnology Internship Venues:

  • Instrumentation Laboratory, Bedford, MA
  • Genomics Institute of the Novartis Research Foundation, La Jolla, CA
  • Amyris, Emeryville, CA
  • Synlogictx, Boston, MA
  • EvoRx, Pasadena, CA
  • Roche Sequencing, Pleasanton, CA
  • Ambry Genetics, Aliso Viejo, CA

Selected Trainee Accomplishments:

Conference Presentations

  • Ruijie (Kelly) Zhang. BASF Research Forum, 2017 (Poster presentation)
  • Ruijie (Kelly) Zhang. "Bridging Chemistry and Biology." Schwarzenberg Symposium, March 2017 (Oral presentation)
  • Kevin Yang. “Machine Learning to Predict Eukaryotic Expression and Plasma Membrane Localization of an Integral Membrane Protein.” Proteins Gordon Research Seminar, June 2017 (Oral presentation)
  • Brake, J. “Wavefront shaping in living tissue.” Advances In Optics For Biotechnology, Medicine And Surgery XV, Engineering Conferences International, 2017.
  • Silverman, B.R.; Kozlowski, M.; Johnstone, C.; Tirrell, D.A. "Genetically Programmable Assembly of BioATOM and BioFARM Communities." DARPA BRICS PI Meeting, May 2017 (Poster presentation)
  • Pradeep Ramesh. "Engineered biosynthesis of magnetic nanostructures in non-magnetic bacteria." World Molecular Imaging Congress Annual Meeting, September 2016. (Poster presentation)
  • Z. Shao. “Discovering the mechanism of action of an ocular therapeutic peptide using transcriptomics and proteomics." 7th Annual Southern California Systems Biology Conference, January 2017 (Poster presentation)
  • Kevin K. Yang, Claire N. Bedbrook, Austin J. Rice, Viviana Gradinaru, Frances H. Arnold. "Using Gaussian process models to predict channelrhodopsin plasma membrane localization." Southern California Machine Learning Symposium, Nov 2016 (Poster presentation; *Runner-up for best application)
  • Farwell, C. C.; Zhang, R. K.; McIntosh, J. A.; Hyster, T. K.; Arnold, F. H. “Enantioselective enzyme-catalyzed aziridination enabled by active-site evolution of a cytochrome P450.” Metals in Biology Gordon Research Conference, January 2016. (Poster presentation)
  • Ramesh, P. et. al. Engineered biosynthesis of magnetic nanostructures in non-magnetic bacteria. World Molecular Imaging Congress Annual Meeting, September 2016.  (Poster presentation)
  • Brake, Joshua, Mooseok Jang, and Changhuei Yang. "The relationship between decorrelation time and sample thickness in acute rat brain tissue slices." SPIE BiOS. International Society for Optics and Photonics, 2016. (Conference presentation) 


  • Bedbrook, C. N., Rice, A. J., Yang, K. K., Ding, X., Chen, S., LeProust, E. M., Gradinaru, V., Arnold, F.H. (2017). Structure-guided SCHEMA recombination generates diverse chimeric channelrhodopsins. PNAS
  • Obana, M.*; Silverman, B. R.*; Tirrell, D. A. “Protein Mediated Colloidal Assembly.” J. Am. Chem. Soc. 2017 139 (40), 14251-14256. *Authors contributed equally to this work
  • Herwig, L.; Rice, A. J.; Bedbrook, C. N.; Zhang, R. K.; Lignell, A.; Cahn, J. K. B.; Renata, H.; Dodani, S. C.; Cho, I.; Cai, L.; Gradinaru, V.; Arnold, F. H. “Directed evolution of a bright near-infrared fluorescent rhodopsin using a synthetic chromophore,” Cell Chemical Biology, 2017, 24, 89–93. ( denotes equal contribution)
  • Prier, C. K.; Zhang, R. K.; Buller, A. R.; Brinkmann-Chen, S.; Arnold, F. H. “Enantioselective, intermolecular benzylic C–H amination catalysed by an engineered iron-haem enzyme,” Nature Chemistry, 2017, 9, 629–634. ( denotes equal contribution)
  • Qureshi, M. M.*, Brake, J.*, Jeon, H. J., Ruan, H., Liu, Y., Safi, A. M., Eom, T. J.,Yang, C., and Chung, E. "In vivo study of optical speckle decorrelation time across depths in the mouse brain." Biomedical Optics Express 8.11 (2017): 4855-4864.
  • Zhou, E. H., Shibukawa, A., Brake, J., Ruan, H., Yang. “Glare suppression by coherence gated negation.” Optica 3.10, (2016): 1107-1113.
  • Brake, Joshua, Mooseok Jang, and Changhuei Yang. "Analyzing the relationship between decorrelation time and tissue thickness in acute rat brain slices using multispeckle diffusing wave spectroscopy." JOSA A 33.2 (2016): 270-275.
  • Davis, H.C*, Ramesh, P* et. al. Mapping the microscale origins of MRI contrast with Subcellular  NV Diamond magnetometry, Submitted to Nature Methods, 2016. * Equal contribution 

Honors & Awards

  • Zixuan (Zach) Shao: President, Caltech Entrepreneurship Club
  • Ruijie (Kelly) Zhang: Caltech Li Ming Award for 2015-2016, recognizing outstanding students of Chinese birth, decent or nationality.


In future years, this page will describe additional outcomes of our training program, including:

  • Average time to degree
  • Percentage of students who successfully attain a PhD
  • Average number of publications per students graduated from PhD, including highlights on 1-2 publications
  • Percentage of URM and students with disabilities in the program and graduated
  • Data on career placement of trainees
  • Highlight piece(s) on one or two trainees (either current or past)
  • Examples of places where alumni have gone
  • Statistics on fellowships and awards obtained by graduates and current trainees, including highlights of 1-2 awards
  • Industrial internships
    • List of industries that have partnered with the program and statistics on where students have done internships
  • Career outcomes beyond the program (symposiums, seminars, etc)

We are excited to share the results of our program, so be sure to check back often!