News & Events

June 2024

The University of Georgia BCMB Excellence and Inclusivity in Biochemistry Seminar Series has been named a recipient of the Insight Into Diversity magazine 2024 Inspiring Programs in STEM Award. This award recognizes programs that have demonstrated an outstanding commitment to access, diversity, and inclusion in its institution’s STEM fields. UGA BCMB’s efforts significantly advance the core values of DEI through programs and initiatives deserving of this national recognition, and will be included in the September STEM issue of Insight Into Diversity magazine.

A previous undergraduate member of the Zeltner lab, Kimata Safi Thomas, was recently accepted to medical school at PCOM Georgia. Join us in congratulating her for this outstanding achievement. Congratulations Kimata!

May 2024

The Zeltner lab was recently publish in a review manuscript for their collaboration! Check it out here

Nadja and the Zeltner Lab’s work have been highlighted in the most recent issue of DYS/COURSE, the newsletter for the Familial Dysautonomia Foundation!

Nadja Zeltner
Familial Dysautonomia: the leader in FD treatment and research

April 2024

We are thrilled to extend our heartfelt congratulations to Stephanie Gogita, an exceptional undergraduate researcher in our lab, for her outstanding presentation at the CURO (Center for Undergraduate Research Opportunities) Symposium. Stephanie’s dedication and passion for her work have been evident throughout her time with us, and her participation in this prestigious event is a testament to her commitment to academic excellence. We are incredibly proud of Stephanie’s achievements and look forward to witnessing her continued success in her academic journey.

Stephanie Gogita, an exceptional undergraduate researcher in our lab, for her outstanding presentation at the CURO (Center for Undergraduate Research Opportunities) Symposium

Taking a break from the lab bench, the Zeltner Lab decided to try something new for team bonding: axe throwing! Thanks to Hsueh-Fu’s for the suggestion, the Zeltner Lab was wielding axes and aiming for targets in a lighthearted atmosphere filled with friendly competition. It was a refreshing change of pace, allowing us to unwind and strengthen our bonds outside the lab while having a blast together.

Click the image to see a larger version!

March 2024

Join us in celebrating Dr. Hsueh-Fu Wu's remarkable achievement as he successfully defended his thesis and earned his PhD on March 18, 2024!

Join us in celebrating Dr. Hsueh-Fu Wu’s remarkable achievement as he successfully defended his thesis and earned his PhD on March 18, 2024! 🎓 We look forward to witnessing the extraordinary contributions he’ll make in his field. Congratulations, Dr. Hsueh-Fu Wu, on this significant milestone!

February 2024


We are thrilled to announce that Nadja Zeltner has earned tenure at the University of Georgia! Nadja’s dedication to research and teaching has greatly contributed to our academic community, and we are proud to have her as a tenured member of our faculty.

Join us in congratulating Nadja on this significant achievement and in celebrating her continued success in shaping the future of our university.

November 2023

Nadja And Kenyi

We are proud to announce that our postdoc Kenyi Saito-Diaz is currently interviewing for Assistant Professor positions. Good luck, Kenyi!”

March/April 2023


Jessica won 2nd prize in in Poster presentation at RBC/ADS 7th research symposium​ at UGA. You Knocked it!

Kenyi won 2 big awards recently!​ Very Impressive! Hard work paying off!!

  1. Grass Foundation Achievement Award
  2.  UGA Postdoctoral Research Award
Nadja gave Tenure and Promotion seminar!!​

Nadja gave Tenure and Promotion seminar!!​

Hsueh-Fu Wu

Hsueh-Fu Wu was awarded with ‘Eriksson Scholarship’ & presented his amazing work in the Eriksson Lecture Series​. Bravo! Excellent work.

Jennifer got The NIH T32 Genetics Training Grant! Great work Jennifer.

story title

Kenyi, Christina and Archie published an outstanding story! Wonderful job!

Story screenshot

Hsueh-Fu and Jennifer from Zeltner lab published a wonderful story. Great job!

February 2023

Proud moment for Zeltner lab-Christina James is an Honors student at UGA and part of Zeltner lab, has received the 2023 Presidential Award of Excellence, which is presented annually to outstanding undergraduate students who rank in the top 1 percent of their class in terms of academic achievement, community service, and leadership skills, both on and off campus. This prestigious award is only bestowed upon seniors at UGA. Congratulations! Christina, we are so proud of you.

January 2023

Tripti Saini

YAY! Zeltner group is growing!! Tripti joined the lab for her Ph.D. work, we are so excited to have you and can’t wait to see what we’ll accomplish together.

New Year's Celebration at the Zeltner house

New Year Gathering at Zeltner house: As we ring in the new year, it was the perfect moment to reflect and celebrate many wins we achieved last year and with the hope of a great 2023. Happy New Year everyone!!

November 2022

Congratulations Hsueh Fu for a fantastic paper in Nature Communications!

July 2022

Christina received the CURO Summer Research Summer Fellowship!
Christina is presenting her poster

Christina received the CURO Summer Research Summer Fellowship!

About the Fellowship: The Center for Undergraduate Research Opportunities awards Summer Research Fellowships (SRFs) to support University of Georgia undergraduates interested in pursuing intensive, immersive, faculty-mentored research during the summer.
In addition to financial support, SRFs enjoy collaborative workshops, lectures, and other events with their cohort.

At the end of the summer, recipients of the fellowship present at the Summer Research Fellowship Final Forum! Here, Christina is presenting her poster titled, “Setting up an Induced Pluripotent Stem Cell Reprogramming Pipeline to Develop a Model to Study
the Neuropathology of Post Traumatic Stress Disorder.”

Congratulations Christina!

June 2022

Dr. Zeltner and graduate students Hsueh-Fu Wu and Jessica McAlpine presented at ISSCR!

About ISSCR:

  • Hsueh-Fu Wu presented a poster titled: “Deciphering stress-related sympathetic neuropathology in familial dysautonomia using induced pluripotent stem cell-based disease modeling”
  •  Jessica McAlpine presented a poster titled: “Protocol for the Directed Differentiation of Adrenal Cortex Progenitors.”

Jennifer received the NIH T32 Training Grant!

About the Grant: The NIH T32 Genetics Training Grant provides students from across campus with training in genetics and opportunities for career development.

More information about the grant can be found here:
Congratulations Jennifer!

May 2022

BMB retreat on May 12th!

The BMB Research Retreat was held at the Complex Carbohydrate Research Center (CCRC) on Thursday, May 12th. The retreat was kicked off by the introduction of 1st/2nd-year BMB graduate students, followed by flash talk and poster sessions. Total 15 flash talks and 31 posters were presented mostly by graduate students. The latter half of the program, which includes games and fun activities, was designed to further foster inter-personal interactions within the department, which were significantly hampered during the pandemic.

Jennifer received the Diversity MATTERS Scholarship!

About the Scholarship: The Neuroscience Diversity MATTERS Scholarship will be awarded to outstanding candidates from women and underrepresented minority groups with an interest in neuroscience. This award is dedicated to assisting early-career Neuroscience students as they navigate their graduate program. This opportunity is designed to facilitate your research training by providing you with enhanced mentoring guidance, leadership opportunities, and stage-specific resources.

Congratulations, Jennifer!!

April 2022

Jennifer presented a poster, “Preliminary Stages of a Novel Stem-Cell Based Model for Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder Pathologies in the Sympathetic Nervous System” at the Regenerative Bioscience Center 2022 Symposium!

February 2022

RBC Research Collective Seminar will be IN-PERSON at 3:45pm on Thursday (2/24/22) in Dan Daniel Conference Room (Edgar L. Rhodes Center, 425 River Road)

Zoom option is available

Please come to support our students and enjoy the ongoing exciting research work.

Speaker: Hsueh-Fu Wu     Mentor: Dr. Nadja Zeltner

Title of the talk: Schwann cell precursor-derived parasympathetic neurons from hPSCs reveal parasympathetic neuropathology in FD

About Hsueh Fu:  Hsueh-Fu was born in Taiwan, where he received the Medical Technology BS and Life Science MS degrees. His research interest is in addressing neurological disorders and injuries via cutting-edge techniques and interdisciplinary approaches. He was working on cerebellar pathogenesis of small GTPase mutation in developmental diseases using a mouse model during his master’s training.  After that, he participated in projects that used adipose stem cell-derived neurons as a cell therapy for stroke and peripheral nervous system injury in an anatomy and medical engineering lab in Taiwan. In Zeltner lab at UGA, his research interest is studying how peripheral nervous system is affected in neural disorders using stem cell-based disease modeling. In his spare time, Hsueh Fu enjoys watching movies and traveling!

January 2022

Hsueh-Fu’s paper was published in Clinical Autonomic Research! Congratulations, Hsueh-Fu!

December 2021

Jessica was admitted to the UGA Graduate school in the Biochemistry and Molecular Biology Department and will stay in our lab, starting as a graduate student in January 2021. Congratulations Jessica!

Jennifer Art is joining the lab in 2022 as a first year graduate student. Welcome Jennifer!

We have a new addition to the Zeltner lab family. Miles Elias Art was born in October 2021 to Jennifer Art. Welcome Miles!


Our BIO-SCULPT team of 6 UGA PIs received a UGA ‘Teaming for Interdisciplinary Research (TIR) Pre-Seed award’! We are excited for this crazy project with Martijn van Wagtendonk, Alexander Bucksch, Mable Fok, Eileen Wallace and Megan Demarche.

September 2021

Hsueh Fu won 2nd prize for the BioTek Imaging Perspectives Contest for his entry of sympathetic neurons differentiated from human pluripotent stem cells. His image will be featured in their yearly calendar! Congrats, Hsueh Fu!


We welcome rotations students Ying Xiang and Conrad Epps!

August 2021

We received a NIH/NICHD R21 grant for our adrenal gland organic project!


We welcome little Alex to the Zeltner lab family! Born to Kenyi and Molly.


May 2021

New Position Open

The Zeltner Lab at the University of Georgia is looking to hire a post doc. Go to the Positions page to see the requirements for the Post-doctoral position in pluripotent stem cell biology and neuroscience.

Kenyi received another postdoctoral fellowship, congratulations!

Professional Heart Daily
AHA Postdoctoral Fellowship

April 2021

Kenyi received a fellowship, congratulations!

Research Supplements

Hsueh Fu received a summer grant, congratulations!

Summer Research Grants UGA

March 2021

We celebrated the labs 3 year anniversary.

3 Year Anniversary Celebration

We got some new lab members; welcome Christina, Archie and Kimani!

New Members

February 2021

Kenyi’s paper was published in Stem Cell Reports, congratulations!

We have a new technician in the lab. Welcome Jessica!

We have two new undergraduate researchers in the lab: Welcome Christina and Archie!

September 2020

Kenyi won 3rd prize for the BioTek Imaging Perspectives Contest for his entry of Neural crest cells and sensory neurons differentiated from human pluripotent stem cells. His image will be featured in their yearly calendar! Congrats, Kenyi!

We have Angel Pittman and Yasmin Tarek Anderson from ILS rotating in our lab, welcome!

Great news – NINDS R01 award!
I got the amazing news this weeks that we are awarded R01 funding from NIH/NINDS. This will allow our research to continue full steam for the next 5 years. Many thanks to all the hard work by Kenyi and Hsueh-Fu!

BioTek 3rd place Kenyi

July 2020

This week:

After a painful, but reasonably productive lock down due to Covid-19, we are finally back up and running. Social distanced, masked and lonely experimentation is happening!

3 people in face masks

April 2019

The Zeltner lab has expanded again: Maya Beatrice Saito-Cohen was born on April 4th 2019. Welcome to the world Maya!

Image of baby maya

March 2019

We celebrated the first Zeltner lab anniversary.

Zeltner lab group picture
Left to right: Jonny, Nadja, Sara, Heidi, Kenyi, Hsueh Fu

January 2019

Hsueh Fu Wu and Jonny Street joined the lab for their PhD work, we are excited to have them in the team.

We published our first two papers:

Saito-Diaz et al., 2019 Current Protocols in Stem Cell Biology ‘Autonomic Neurons with Sympathetic Character Derived From Human Pluripotent Stem Cells.’

Saito-Diaz et al., Clinical autonomic Research ‘Induced pluripotent stem cells for disease modeling, cell therapy and drug discovery in genetic autonomic disorders: a review.

September 2018

We had 4 ILS students successfully rotate in our lab, great work everyone!

August 2018

We are open for ILS student rotations. Please contact Dr. Zeltner if you are interested to rotate for your 2nd or 3rd rotation.

February 1 2018

The Zeltner lab has opened!

August 24 2017

The Zeltner lab will open in February 2018. We will be located on the second floor of the Center for Molecular Medicine (CMM) building, adjacent to the Complex Carbohydrate Research Center (CCRC) at the University of Georgia in Athens, Georgia, USA.