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VGER Staff

The Vanderbilt Genome Editing Resource (VGER) is directed by Dr. Mark A. Magnuson. Dr. Magnuson has been involved with the oversight of this facility since 1993.






Jennifer Skelton, M.S., is the senior program manager of the VGER. Jennifer obtained her Master’s from Mississippi State University in Reproductive Physiology. She is the initial point of contact for investigators requesting mouse services. Jennifer performs pronuclear and cytoplasmic microinjections, electroporations, rederivations,  maintains the databases for the VGER, and maintains iLab service requests.



Leesa Sampson, Ph.D., is the Assistant Director of VGER. Leesa obtained a PhD in Cell and Developmental Biology at Vanderbilt University and completed her postdoctoral training at Cincinnati Children’s Hospital in the Department of Experimental Hematology and Cancer Biology. She has used both Drosophila and mice to study the impact of nutrition and nutrient sensing pathway on adult stem cell-based tissues using genetic techniques such as mosaic analysis and lineage labeling. She joined VGER in 2017 and specializes in designing mouse and cell genome edited models for biomedical research through both fee for service and collaborative mechanisms.


Linda Gower, B.S., L.V.T. is a senior research specialist who performs microinjection, cryopreservation, in vitro fertilization (IVF), and embryonic stem cell microinjections. Linda earned her Bachelor of Science degree from Western Kentucky and her Licensed Veterinary Technician degree from Morehead State University.





Kasia Jopek, M.S., is a research specialist. Kasia reviews genome editing design strategies, tests reagents, genotypes pups, performs microinjection, and cryopreservations.