About Us

Contact Us

Child & Family Research Institute
Robinson Lab, Rm 2071
950 West 28th Avenue
Vancouver, BC
V5Z 4H4


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Location and Affiliation

Our lab is part of the Department of Medical Genetics at The University of British Columbia.

We are located in the Child & Family Research Institute at the Children’s and Women’s Health Centre of British Columbia. Our facility is located centrally in Vancouver at the corner of 28th and Oak Street.

Our Lab

Dr. Wendy Robinson
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Wendy Robinson (P.I.): Wendy completed her Ph.D. in Population Genetics at UC Berkeley and a postdoctoral fellowship in Zurich, Switzerland. She believes in approaching problems from multiple angles and questioning everything you read. She is the proud mother of two great boys and is very appreciative of all the students/staff who do all the work! Profile on ResearchGate E-Mail:Wendy P. Robinson

Dr. Maria Peñaherrera
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Maria S. Peñaherrera A. (Lab Manager/RA AKA: madre gallina): Maria completed her PhD in Medical Genetics at UBC in 2003 – in this very lab! She is originally from Quito, Ecuador, and returned there after her degree where she set up the country’s most modern forensic and paternity genetics lab for the Ecuadorian Red Cross. However, she missed us too much and had to come back! Maria has a special interest in studying imprinting disorders such as Silver Russell and Beckwith- Wiedemann Syndrome, X-chromosome inactivation in human placenta and is currently also doing research on methylation of conserved imprinted domains in placental and somatic tissues of clinical populations such as neural tube defects (NTDs).   E-Mail:Maria Peñaherrera

Ruby Jiang
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Ruby Jiang (Tech/RA): Ruby earned her undergraduate degree in Biology in Tianjin, China. Ruby Moved to Canada in 1999 and has worked in the lab since 2000. Ruby is our lab guru. We would be lost without her. Ruby knows where everything is and she knows how to do everything! E-Mail:Ruby Jiang

Dr. Irina  Manokhina

Irina Manokhina MD PhD (Post doctoral): Irina graduated from the Moscow Medical Academy in 2003 as a Doctor of Medicine and then in 2009 received her Ph.D. in Genetics from the Research Institute for Medical Genetics (Russia). She was awarded the CFRI- Mining for Miracles Postdoctoral Fellowship. She is developing approaches to non-invasive prenatal diagnostics with cell-free fetal DNA in maternal plasma. Irina enjoys winter sports, gardening and travelling. E-Mail:Irina Manokhina

Magda Price
Magda Price (BSc): Magda is a Doctoral student studying changes in DNA methylation in the congenital diseases that affect the spinal cord. She received her undergraduate degree in Biomedical Sciences from the University of Guelph in Ontario. In addition to working in the Robinson lab, Magda volunteers with UBC’s Let’s Talk Science and loves to explore the beautiful West Coast on her bicycle. E-Mail:Madga Price
Samantha Wilson
Samantha Wilson (BSc): Sam is a PhD student in the Robinson lab studying the DNA methylation profiles of placentas from pregnancies complicated by preeclampsia (a maternal hypertensive disorder) and intrauterine growth restriction (poor fetal growth); with a particular interest in identifying novel biomarkers capable of detecting women at high risk of these complications. She completed her BSc Honours Specialization in Genetics from the University of Western Ontario (and refuses to call it Western University). While not in the lab, Sam enjoys hiking,playing soccer, and cooking yummy things. E-Mail:Samantha Wilson
Olivia Degoede
Olivia de Goede (BSc): Olivia is a master’s student who received her BSc Honours in Biology from the University of Victoria in 2013.  She is currently studying the DNA methylation profiles of immune cells in cord blood and their relationship to neonatal immunity.  In her spare time, Olivia is a goalie for the UBC soccer team!   E-Mail:Olivia Degoede
Chaini Konwar
Chaini Konwar (MSc): Chaini is a Doctoral student in the Robinson Lab. She is studying DNA methylation patterns from pregnancies complicated by Chorioamnionitis which is caused by bacterial infection and characterised by inflammation of chorion, amnion and placenta. Chaini has completed her Msc (Animal Genetics) from Dalhousie University, Nova Scotia. She has another MSc in Medical Biotechnology from India. Apart from working in lab, she enjoys travelling, exploring new places and experiencing new cultures. She also has a keen interest in teaching and has been an active participant in many instructional and teaching workshops. She shares a deep passion for Indian food – both cooking and eating. In her spare time, she volunteers with Inspire Health which is a supportive Cancer care center in Vancouver. E-Mail:Chaini Konwar
Giulia Del Gobbo
Giulia Del Gobbo: Giulia is a graduate student in the Robinson lab studying the associations between genetic variants and risks for pregnancy complications and congenital defects, as well as the association between candidate variants and changes in DNA methylation in the placenta. She received her BSc Honours degree in Biology from Queen’s University in 2015. Outside of the lab, Giulia enjoys hiking, running, and indulging in her love of food and a good cup of coffee or tea! E-Mail:Chaini Konwar
Research Co-ordinators

Johanna Schuetz

Johanna Schuetz (PhD): Johanna received her PhD in Medical Genetics from UBC in 2012. She loves chatting over a good cup of tea, talking about genetics/science and collecting assorted kitchen gadgets

E-Mail:Research Coordinator


Kristal Louie (Research Co-ordinator)
Dr. Kirsten Hogg (Post doctoral)
Joanna Mendell (Research Co-ordinator)
John Blair (MSc) 2013

E-Mail: John Blair
Courtney Hanna (PhD) 2013

Gina Teodosio (Lab Assistant)

Dan Diego Alvarez (Post-Doc) 2011

Ryan Yuen (PhD) 2011

lost photoE-Mail:Ryan Yeun
Danielle Bourque (MSc) 2010

Luana Avila (BSc)

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E-Mail:Luana Avila
Jennifer Sloan (Research co-ordinator)

Karla Bretherick (PhD) 2008

Sara Harbord (MSc) 2007

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E-Mail:Sara Harbord
Paul Yong (M.D./PhD) 2006

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E-Mail:Paul Yong
Jane Gair (PhD) 2005

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E-Mail:Jane Gair
Lauren Currie (Directed studies student) 2005

Maria Peñaherrera (Ph.D.) 2003
Cathy Anderson (Post-doc) Ph.D. 2002

Christy Beever (MSc.)  2002

Michael Wang (MSc.)  1999

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E-Mail:Michael Wang
Helene Bruyere (PDF 1998-99)

Prior lab photos


Lost photo2012


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