Blog Section

About the HOPES Team

HOPES is a team of faculty and undergraduate students at Stanford University dedicated to making scientific information about Huntington's disease (HD) more readily accessible to the public. Our goal is to survey the rapidly growing scientific literature on HD and to present this information in a web source. We seek to provide information about causes, symptoms and treatment of HD that reflects current scientific understanding of HD. To date, HOPES resources have reached out to families in over 47 countries.

We emphasize that we are neither medical professionals, nor affiliations of the researchers and laboratories mentioned on our pages. The information we present is intended for educational purposes only and should not be construed as offering diagnoses or recommendations. We operate as a not-for-profit public service organization, and our funding is entirely from private sources.


Meet the HOPES Team



Stephanie Liou

Stephanie is a sophomore with a penchant for pretty things, paddling dragonboats, pushing pixels, the printed word, procrastination, and photography. She joined HOPES because she loves science, loves websites, loves people, and loves writing. Relatedly, her main life goals are to become the next Dr. Sanjay Gupta, and to spread the gospel of bubble tea around the world. Stephanie also enjoys alliteration, collecting Stuff that Looks Like Other Stuff, snacking when she ought to be sleeping, making lists, tweeting excessively, watching unintellectual television, changing her mind about what to major in, and speaking in third person.


Pooja Bakhai

Pooja Bakhai is a senior majoring in human biology with a focus in global health and infectious disease, and minoring in music. She is the President of Global Health Volunteers at Stanford, plays clarinet with the Stanford Philharmonic Orchestra, and is looking forward to researching the viral etiology of Chronic Fatigue Syndrome. Huntington's disease is present in her father's side of the family, and this has inspired her to work for HOPES. As a future doctor, Pooja aims to eliminate health disparities and work with underserved populations in the United States and around the world.

Amy Amy Lanctot

Amy is a student researcher who is thrilled to be joining HOPES. A member of the Stanford class of 2013, she plans on majoring in Biology, with an emphasis on molecular and cellular biology. She joined HOPES because she is very interested in the biological workings of Huntington's Disease and its treatments. She also thinks that compiling all the research on the forefront of HD into one website written to be accessible to everyone is a brilliant idea. Her favorite part of HOPES is getting to meet so many remarkable people who share her goals. In her free time, Amy enjoys dancing, writing for the paper, reading, and watching bad British television.

Aimee Aimee Zhang

Aimee is having the time of her life during her third year at Stanford. She is a proud member of the class of 2012 and majoring in Human Biology. Aimee is a student researcher for HOPES. She decided to join HOPES because she likes the way HOPES serves the HD community and the potential number of people it reaches around the world. In her spare time, Aimee likes to read, run, write, play video games, and watch the sunset. Her long-time wish is to fly.

Yi Yi Lu

Yi is a student researcher and a proud member of the Stanford Class of 2011. He joined HOPES because of his desire to combine his interests in scientific outreach and education with his skills as a writer. His favorite part about HOPES so far has been the opportunity to meet so many engaging and inspiring people from the HD community. At Stanford, Yi is majoring in Anthropology with a minor in Modern Languages, although he really wishes that he could just stay in school forever and get a Bachelor's degree in everything. In his free time, he enjoys reading The New York Times, eating plain yogurt and thinking about how great it would be to run a marathon. He also hates beets. Boy does he hate beets.

Tiffany Tiffany Wang

Tiffany is a student researcher with HOPES. She is a Biology major hoping to go to medical school and member of the Stanford Class of 2010. Tiffany became interested in HOPES after working at an Alzheimer's Research lab, which prompted her to learn more about other neurodegenerative diseases. Since becoming a member of HOPES in 2008, Tiffany has found inspiration in working with the HD community and treasures every opportunity she has had to hear the stories of people who are affected by HD. As a frequent participant in science outreach activities, she sees HOPES as a way to pursue her academic interests while serving the HD community. When she is not working on pre-medical classes or HOPES, Tiffany enjoys dancing with her school jazz group Urban Styles, eating cereal and watching David Attenborough's Planet Earth documentaries.

Faren Faren Clum

Faren graduated in June 2009 with a BA in Human Biology but couldn't bear to leave the HOPES team behind. She stepped down from the position of Project Leader and is enjoying getting back to researching and writing articles. Her favorite job within HOPES is answering e-mail, so please send feedback and questions! In her free time, which she finds quite abundant post-college, Faren likes to cook, eat, and teach dance. Oh and study for the MCAT…

Academic Advisors

  • Morgan Thompson, Ph.D. – Editing Consultant
  • Danielle Simmons, Ph.D. – Editing Consultant
  • William Durham, Ph.D. – Faculty advisor, Bing Professor in Human Biology, Department of Anthropological Sciences

Past Team Members

  • Danny Neumann, Web Developer, B.S. in Geophysics
  • Andrew Pipathsouk – Researcher, B.S. in Mechanical Engineering
  • Chelsea Garnett – Researcher, B.A. in Human Biology
  • Jean Ansolabehere – Researcher, Senior in Human Biology and English
  • Natalie Justicz – Graphic Artist, Senior in Human Biology
  • Adam Hepworth – Project Leader & Researcher, Senior in Human Biology and Philosophy
  • Mesa Schumacher – Graphic Artist, B.A. in Anthropological Science
  • Amy Frohnmayer – Researcher, Psychology
  • Eric Whitney – Researcher, Human Biology
  • Jonathan Dyal – Project Leader & Researcher, B.A. in Human Biology
  • Justine Seidenfeld – Researcher, B.A. in Human Biology
  • Matt Woloszyn – Researcher, English
  • Alicia Follmar – Researcher, Human Biology
  • Aliyya Haque – Researcher, B.A. in Human Biology
  • Christina Chen – Project Leader & Researcher, B.A. in Human Biology, '07
  • Devon McGee – Project Leader & Researcher, B.A. in Human Biology, '06
  • Stanislav Jourin – Art Director, M.S. in Digital Imaging & Design at NYU, '04
  • Kim Taub – Project leader & Researcher, B.A. in Human Biology, '05
  • Taylor Altman – Researcher, B.A. in Human Biology
  • Jia Hou – Researcher, B.A. in Human Biology
  • Agnieszka Milczarek – Researcher, B.S. in Biology and B.A. in English
  • Leon Hsu – Researcher, B.A. in Human Biology, '05
  • Clare Tobin – Researcher, B.A. in Human Biology
  • Michael Morici – Researcher, B.S. in Biology
  • Tonkid Chantrasmi – Web developer, Graduate Student in Mechanical Engineering
  • Shawn Fu – Web developer & graphic artist, B.S. in Biology, '03
  • Amy Hsu – Project leader, B.S. in Mathematical and Computational Science, '02
  • Matt Stenerson – Project leader & researcher, B.A. in Human Biology, '03
  • Cathy Barnard – Researcher, B.A. in Human Biology, '04
  • Kaizad Cama – Researcher, B.A. in Human Biology, '03
  • Peter Chang – Researcher & web developer, B.S. in Biology '03
  • Darwin Chen – Researcher, B.A. in Human Biology, '02
  • Tucker Cunningham – Web developer & graphic artist, Senior in Computer Science
  • Jaclyn Czaja – Researcher, B.A. in Human Biology, '02
  • Karen Hammond – Researcher, B.A. in Psychology at Carleton College, '03
  • Kelvin Ho – Web developer & graphic artist, B.S. in Computer Science, '04
  • Tracy Ho – Researcher, Senior in Human Biology
  • Vinita Kailasanath – Researcher, B.A. in Human Biology and American Studies, '03
  • Shashikant Khandelwal – Web Developer, Graduate Student in Computer Science
  • Ruth Lo – Researcher, B.A. in Human Biology, '04
  • Jean-Gabriel Morard – Web developer, Graduate Student in Computer Science
  • Melissa Schapiro – Researcher, B.S. in Biology & Psychology, '04
  • Gina Schiel – Researcher, Senior in Human Biology
  • Elyn Tan – Researcher, B.A. in Human Biology, '03
  • Joakim Vinberg – Web developer and graphic artist, B.S. in Biotechnology, '04
  • Belinda Fu, M.D. – Faculty advisor, Lecturer, Department of Human Biology
  • Joanna Mountain, Ph.D. – Faculty advisor, Assistant Professor, Department of Anthropological Sciences and Department of Genetics
  • Ronald Barrett, R.N., Ph.D. – Faculty advisor, Assistant Professor in Medical Anthropology