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  • MD/PhD Candidate, UCSF

  • Genomics

Reuben Hogan


Reuben is currently enrolled in a Medical Scientist Training Program (MD/PhD) at University of California, San Francisco and starting his graduate training in the Krogan Lab, where he will be investigating the protein-protein interactions of APOE4 that account for its correlation with Alzheimer's disease.


His focus is on fostering the next generation of cellular and gene therapies that will address longstanding unmet needs for patients with chronic illness.


He obtained his Bachelor's in Molecular Biology & Biochemistry at Washington University in Saint Louis. Reuben has a broad range of research experience as a former Amgen Scholar at UC Berkeley and a MARC-uSTAR student at WashU among other research titles.


Proudly born and raised just outside New Orleans, LA, Reuben enjoys his free time making and eating good food and catching live music whenever possible. He balances this with time spent in the gym or hiking to offset his complicated relationship with butter and bacon. As a Black man, Reuben takes seriously his opportunities to champion STEM-related careers and their applications to young underrepresented minority students and can always be found in Black community organizations at UCSF.


With the arrival of gene-editing technologies, we are looking at a world where we can develop treatments that are more sustainable for patients by solving diseases rather than creating dependencies on medication. My family has always struggled with high levels of "bad" cholesterol, or LDL. Most of them were prescribed statins. With treatments such as those that edit the PCSK9 gene, families like mine may one day have an enduring alternative to the medications they pay for and take daily.


With CRISPR we can determine the function of almost any gene by generating knockouts in different settings. We can even use CRISPR variants to understand the consequences of increasing or decreasing expression of a gene in a cell at any time in any condition. This has huge potential for identifying genes that are important in different diseases. While CRISPR may or may not make big splashes in the clinic, it has already made big splashes in research that will accelerate our understanding of many different diseases.


Completing my MD/PhD application cycle with offers from nine universities. I did a gap year in the Bay Area working as a lab technician in the McManus Lab at UCSF and during that time I was also going through the application process. I was commuting an hour and a half to lab, working, taking classes and teaching at night. It was the busiest I had ever been. But after it all, I ended my cycle with nine admissions, and my choice of where to go. I really never thought I would pull it off and to that degree.

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