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Arianne Theiss, PhD, AGAF

Associate Professor

Arianne received her PhD degree in 2005 from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill in Cell and Molecular Physiology. She completed her postdoctoral training in the Division of Digestive Diseases at Emory University. She then joined the faculty in the Division of Gastroenterology at Baylor Research Institute in Dallas, TX and started her independent research lab.


In 2019, she moved to Colorado where she enjoys training mentees to become independent scientists, teaching medical and graduate students in formal courses, and directs the NRSA Development Program. Arianne holds appointments in the Cancer Biology, Microbiology, and Cell Biology/Stem Cells/Development graduate programs.


Beyond her campus activities, she is actively involved in the American Gastroenterological Association and the American Physiological Society. When not in the lab, she enjoys running, skiing, and traveling.

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Parsa Haque

PhD Candidate

Parsa is from Bangladesh. She earned her Bachelor of Pharmacy, and her Master of Pharmacy from the University of Dhaka (Bangladesh).


Currently, she is a PhD candidate in the Cancer Biology Program in the School of Medicine at CU Anschutz. She joined the Theiss lab in 2021, and she is studying changes in metabolism and tumor phenotype in colorectal cancer confounded with obesity.

Parsa enjoys reading, she is always searching for cozy bookstores and coffee shops to turn those into her new reading spots. In addition, she loves traveling.


Grecia Rivera

PhD Student

Grecia is from Peru, and she earned her Bachelor of Science in Food Science and Technology from Zamorano University (Honduras). Before graduate school, she worked as a researcher at Duke University in the Biomedical Engineering Department and the Gastroenterology Division.


In 2022, she started her PhD in the Microbiology Program; and in 2023, she joined the Theiss Lab. She is interested to understand how pathogens can trigger/contribute to IBD, and what role does mitochondrial dysfunction play in this interplay.

In her free times, Grecia loves running long distances, playing with her dog Dynah, trying new restaurants and cocktails, dancing and playing board games.


Desiree Goodman

Laboratory Services Professional

Desiree graduated with Bachelor of Arts in Anthropology from the University of Colorado in Colorado Springs. She has worked at CU Anschutz for six years. For three years she worked in the vivarium as an animal care tech, and for three years she has supported researchers as a Laboratory Services Professional in Microbiology, Crnic Institute for Down Syndrome. She joined the Theiss lab in 2023. 


During the weekends, Desiree can either be found snuggled up with a good book and one of her various cats or on the slopes snowboarding.


Zhantao Yu, PhD.

Postdoctoral Fellow

Zhantao is from China. He majored in Animal Science at Northwest A&F University and obtained his Master of Science from China Agricultural University. Recently, he graduated from the University of Tennessee at Knoxville with a PhD degree in Animal Science. He joined the lab in 2023 as a post-doctoral fellow.

His research focuses on how mitochondrial dysfunction influences inflammation within the intestine.

Outside the lab, Zhantao likes playing basketball, fishing, ping-pong and college football.

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