Emma R Andersson, Principle Investigator

Dr Emma R. Andersson is a Principle Investigator running a lab with two sites, one at the Department of Cell and Molecular Biology at the Karolinska Institutet, and one at the South campus of the Karolinska University hospital. As a Ph.D. student with Ernest Arenas at the department of Medical Biochemistry and Biophysics (MBB) at Karolinska Institutet, she elucidated several roles for Wnt signaling in the morphogenesis and differentiation of the embryonic midbrain. After defending her PhD in 2009, she pursued postdoctoral studies with Urban Lendahl at the department of Cell and Molecular Biology (CMB), also at Karolinska Institutet, where her work focused on the role of Notch signaling in development and disease of the nervous system and in the liver. In order to devise a method to rapidly manipulate gene expression in the developing embryonic nervous system and other organ systems, she performed guest research in the laboratories of Professors Elaine Fuchs and Mary E Hatten (Rockefeller University, New York, USA) to further develop the technique of ultrasound-guided in utero microinjection of lentivirus. This technique was originally developed to target developing skin, but Dr Andersson has now established protocols which allow targeting of several organ systems during development, including the nervous, gastric and respiratory systems. She has established the technology as a core facility (Infinigene: Infrastructure for ultrasound-guided in utero injection and rapid genetic manipulation in mouse), in addition to a core facility for virus productionFull CV.

Current lab members


Rob Driessen, Affiliated PhD student

Rob Driessen obtained his bachelor and master degree in Biomedical Engineering at the Eindhoven University of Technology. For his master thesis he studied the effect of gas plasma modifications for in situ tissue engineering in the group of Carlijn Bouten. As part of his master program he visited the lab of Elena Aikawa at Brigham and Women’s Hospital and Harvard Medical School in Boston studying the role of radiation on valvular calcification.

Rob is a PhD student with Carlijn Bouten and Cecilia Sahlgren in Eindhoven. He studies the effect of hemodynamic forces on Notch signaling in the cardiovascular system. In this project he has a special interest for the effect of shear stress on Notch signaling in endothelial cells. Currently Rob is visiting the Andersson lab to investigate the role Jagged1 in the shear stress response by using the Ndr mouse model.


Ileana Guzzetti, postdoctoral fellow shared with Petzold lab

Ileana Guzzetti finished her PhD in Chemical Sciences at the University of Milan (Italy) in 2014. This year she moved to Sweden, joining our group and the group of Katja Petzold (MBB).

Naomi Hensens, Bachelors student ERASMUS exchange

Naomi Hensens is a bachelor student at the University of Applied Sciences in Utrecht, with a specialization in bio-molecular research (BMR). She is supervised by Simona Hankeova in the Andersson lab, and works on the vascular abnormalities in Alagille syndrome model mice (Andersson et al Gastroenterology, e-pub ahead of print) for her final internship/graduation thesis.


Simona Hankeova, PhD Student

PhD student in KI-MU collaboration, shared with Vitezslav Bryja

Afshan Iqbal

Afshan Iqbal, PhD Student

Afshan is recently recruited to pursue doctoral studies. She is also working as Lecturer at the University of the Punjab, Pakistan. Her PhD project aims to develop therapies for Alagille syndrome and to elucidate the mechanism of Notch control of growth factor pathways in Alagille syndrome. In parallel, she will study whether putative treatments are not only sufficient, but safe.



Katrin Mangold, PhD Student

I am focusing on the development of the central nervous system and the contribution of DNA mutations to the onset of brain disorders like cerebral palsy. My main interest is to discover de novo mutations in patient samples and combine this with high through-put in vivo screens to investigate the role of the affected genes in brain development. For this I am using ultrasound-guided in utero microinjections of lentivirus to induce widespread alteration of gene expression in the embryonic murine central nervous system.

Since this technique is a powerful alternative to common knock-out model systems, I am also involved in several collaborations with groups at Karolinska Institute that are focusing on the development of other organ systems like the heart, lungs or kidneys and are interested in using ultrasound-guided microinjections in utero as well.


Jan Mašek, Post Doc

Janek obtained his PhD at Charles University in Prague. Originally coming from the laboratory of Vitezslav Bryja in Brno where he got charmed by the Wnt/b-catenin signaling pathway, he continued in Prague in Zbynek Kozmik´s lab. There he focused on the role of transcription factor Tcf7l1 in early events of the mammalian neural crest cell development. His current goal is to elucidate the specificity of the individual Notch ligands towards their receptors in the context of early liver formation and disease.


Dimitri Schritt, Bioinformatician, post doc

Dimitri Schritt graduated from the University of Canterbury with a PhD in Mathematical Physics in 2013. He spent his first postdoc at the Immunology Frontier Research Institute of Osaka University developing software tools in python for antibody tertiary structure modelling. His interests include machine learning, Bayesian statistics, and finding efficient computational solutions to challenging biological problems.

When he’s not writing code, he enjoys bouldering around Stockholm.

Bettina Semsch, Animal technician specialist and team leader, technician at INFINIGENE

Bettina Semsch was born in Heidelberg, Germany. In 2009 she moved to Sweden and was an animal technician and team leader at the production unit KM-W and INFINIGENE. From the 1st of April 2016 she got promoted to animal technician specialist.

In August 2015 she joined the group. She works for INFINIGENE doing ultrasound guided micro injections in utero and the rest of the time she will do other lab work.

First she started an education to become an optician, but her dream always was to work in research. After 4 years as an optician she decided to pursue her goal of working in research. She wrote some applications and got a job at the German Cancer Research Center in Heidelberg, Germany. After her education, she worked there for 2 more years. Bettina is an expert in embryo transfer, cryopreservation, vasectomi, microinjection, anasthesia, taking bloodsamples and much more.

During her free time, Bettina likes to meet friends, cook, read, go to the movies, travel and she is absolutely fascinated about astronomy & astrophotography. She likes to look at planets, stars and galaxies through her telescope. It is fascinating to see how huge the universe is.

On her last visit in Germany she met the German Astronaut Alexander Gerst after his lecture for a short talk and it was such a great experience to talk to him.

Bettina’s best moment is a parabolic flight where she was weightless for over 30 minutes – she really wants to do that again as soon as possible!