Associate Professor

Christoph Hofstetter, M.D., Ph.D., is a physician scientist in the Department of Neurological Surgery at the University of Washington. Dr. Hofstetter earned his M.D. from University of Vienna, and Ph.D. at Karolinska Institute in Stockholm. 
Dr. Hofstetter is an expert in experimental and translational spinal cord injury research. His research focuses on the development on biomarkers for prognosis and treatment guidance following acute spinal cord injury. Together with his collaborator Dr. Matt Bruce, his laboratory has developed a novel type of contrast-enhanced ultrasound which allows to visualize specific segments of the vascular tree. This innovative imaging modality allows his laboratory to assess the impact of trauma on local tissue perfusion. Dr. Hofstetter also investigates the use of stem cells and specialized polymers to improve recovery following acute spinal cord injury. His research also includes the use of transcutaneous electrical stimulation with both preclinical and clinical trials in close collaboration with Drs. Moritz and Perlmutter.


Assistant Professor

Dr. Zin Khaing is an assistant professor in the Department of Neurological Surgery at the University of Washington in Seattle. Dr. Khaing's expertise is in the areas of plasticity and regeneration of the central nervous system. Her current work examines 1) vascular changes that underlies secondary damage after acute spinal cord injury and 2) the key role extracellular matrix molecules play in neuroinflammation, regeneration and tissue homeostasis.

Dr. Khaing obtained her PhD in Developmental, Cellular and Molecular Biology from NYU-Mount Sinai School of Medicine in New York with Dr. James Roberts and Dr. Mariann Blum. Her post-doctoral work was in the lab of Dr. Christine Schmidt at  the University of Texas at Austin, where she developed biologically relevant biomaterials to interact with and augment the central nervous system.

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Research Scientist / Lab Manager

Lindsay received her Bachelors of Science in Molecular, Cellular, and Developmental Biology from the University of California, Santa Cruz.  During and after college she spent time tutoring college-level biology and English courses. She came to the Hofstetter lab from The Scripps Research Institute in La Jolla, California.  There she worked for a behavioral testing and surgical core facility. In the Hofstetter lab she puts her experience in rodent behavior and microsurgery to work, but also keeps the lab running smoothly as the lab manager. She enjoys cooking, fishing, and movie trivia.


Research Technologist

Jeff joined the lab in 2017 as a recent graduate from Western Washington University. He previously worked in Western’s Behavioral Neuroscience program, studying the neural basis of sucrose craving under Dr. Jeffrey Grimm. In the Hofstetter lab he assists with all active projects by performing histological analysis of tissue specimens, and by evaluating the functional deficits associated with spinal cord injury. He enjoys outdoor activities all over the Seattle area, including hiking and rowing.


Volunteer / Medical Student

Michael Cruz is currently a rising second year medical student at the University of Washington School of Medicine. He graduated cum laude at California State University Long Beach in 2012 where he studied Political Science and competed nationally in collegiate debate. His first passion has always been mentoring and teaching others, and he had fully intended to become a political science professor before switching careers to pursue medicine. His teaching track record includes science tutoring, high school competitive debate coaching, premedical mentorship, and professional training. Michael first came to the Hofstetter lab as an undergraduate post-bacc student, and has remained involved after he was accepted into UWSOM. His general research interests involve exploring clinical and basic science approaches to functional recovery after CNS injuries and neurodegenerative diseases. He recently finished a project involving development of an animal model to investigate plasticity induction with transcutaneous electrical stimulation after an acute spinal cord injury. In his off-time, Michael enjoys weight-lifting, hiking and reading books.


Undergraduate Intern/Research Assistant

Julia is an undergraduate in the class of 2020 at University of Washington, majoring in Neuroscience and minoring in Diversity. In addition to academics, she is an author and production manager for Grey Matters, UW’s undergraduate neuroscience journal. She is also a program leader for the cultural exchange program Unite UW. In the Hofstetter lab, Julia studies neuroinflammation and extracellular matrix interactions while also applying her editing and peer review skills to lab publications.


Undergraduate Research Assistant

Chuc is an undergraduate at the University of Washington, double majoring in Psychology and Biology with a focus in Physiology. She discovered her interest in the nervous system as a high school student after enrolling in a college level Psychology course as part of the Running Start program. Seeking an opportunity to further her knowledge, she applied for an internship in the Neurological Surgery Summer Student program at UW, and was placed in the Hofstetter Lab. After the internship, she was invited to remain in the lab to continue her research efforts. Her work in the lab is focused on the use of hemostatic nanoparticles to prevent blood loss after traumatic spinal cord injury.


Undergraduate Research Volunteer

Juliana is a class of 2021 undergraduate at the University of Washington. After a year in business school, she decided to switch her major to a B.S. in Public Health and Global Health. Beyond school, Juliana spends her time playing violin, volunteering at the ED of Seattle Children's Hospital, and watching sports. In the lab, she is involved with studying the effects of bladder denervation after SCI.


Undergraduate Research Assistant

Brian is an undergraduate in the class of 2020 at the University of Washington, majoring in Electrical Engineering with a concentration of Digital Signal and Image Processing.  He is passionate about biotech and medical device industries where he could contribute his work to the creation of ideas and devices that could help people for the better.  He joined Dr. Bruce's lab to further his passion and knowsledge of image processing and ultrasound imaging, specifically on spinal cord injury.  His work in the lab is mainly focused on reconstructing and processing data to obtain perfusion and blood flow images and 3D rendering volume models after spinal cord injury.




Dane received a Master's degree in Applied Bioinformatics through the University of Oregon and completed a year-long internship at the University of Washington with the Applied Physics Laboratory and Neurological Surgery Department. He contributed to image processing using contrast enhanced ultrasound in a spinal cord injury model. He created visual representations of inflammation patterns, perfusion rates, and other unique trends that aligned with different SCI injury types. He plans to publish his findings in the near future. 

Dane is currently a Data Analytics Consultant for the Business Development Department at Boeing in Seattle, Washington. He works with global parts access and developing different models to improve parts distribution around the world and identifying novel techniques for business optimization (blockchain implementation, machine learning, data mining, etc.). He also continues to consult data processing and analytics for Dr. Hofstetter's lab. 


Jinci is currently an undergraduate at Macalester College in Saint Paul, MN, majoring in Neuroscience and minoring in Psychology. With a interest in medicine and research, she applied for the Neurological Surgery Summer Student Program and was selected to work in the Hofstetter Lab. She spent her summer doing research on validating our novel technique, ultrafast contrast-enhanced ultrasound (CEUS) with the microsphere deposition technique. She is returning to Macalester to finish her undergraduate and continuing her research on investigating non-traditional treatments for adolescents with mood disorders at the University of Minnesota. In the near future, she hopes to attend medical school and serve underserved and diverse communities.

Rachel Blakemore
Brian Kim


Rachel began working with the Hofstetter Lab during the Autumn of 2016 and volunteered in the lab a couple of days a week assisting with histology and data analysis. She graduated from the University of Washington in 2018 with a B.S. in Microbiology, and is beginning optometry school at Pacific University in Fall 2019.


Brian began working for the Hofstetter Lab as a freshman at UW.  Over the two years he spent with the lab he went from a bioengineering major to an informatics major focusing in data science.  This change in major coincided with the Hofstetter Lab's development of contrast-enhanced ultrasound where Brian was able to apply his data science and image processing education.

Brian is currently a software engineer at the Allen Institute for Cell Science in the Microscope team.  He is developing microscope automation software for many different types of acquisitions that our incorporated into the "Cell Explorer" project.  

Brian is also working with Dr. Donghoon Lee's lab in UW Radiology on MRI data analysis, and with UW software developers to create a fitness app.

Anna Marie Yanny


Anna Marie was a Neurosurgery Intern for the Hofstetter Laboratory.  She helped to document motor neuron survival following a novel surgery in the rat spinal cord.  After her internship, Anna Marie completed her B.S. in Behavioral Neuroscience at Western Washington University.  She went on to work at the Allen Institute for Brain Science where she helped classify neuronal and glial cell types in the human brain through transcriptional profiling.


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