Ashley Carter
Associate Professor
Department of Physics and Astronomy
Biochemistry and Biophysics Program

Office: Science Center, Room A122• (413) 542-2593
Laboratory: Science Center, Room C009 • (413) 542-2949

Curriculum Vitae

Current Lab Members

Oliver Polachini
Class of 2026
Centrifugal Force Microscopy

David Brown
Class of 2025
Histone Replacement

Jonathan Xing
Class of 2025
DNA Folding

Jai Dreher
Class of 2025
Histone Replacement

Karen Lee
Class of 2025
Histone Replacement

Melanie Huq
Class of 2025
Centrifugal Force Microscopy

Isabel Hardy
Class of 2024
Histone Replacement

Daniel Oo
Class of 2024
DNA Folding

Michael Liu
Class of 2024
DNA Folding

Gigi Golden
Class of 2024
DNA Folding

Alejandra Velasquez
Class of 2024
Histone Replacement

Audrey Orlowski
Class of 2023
Centrifugal Force Microscopy

Jake Kim
Class of 2023
DNA Folding

Vietta Kuntz
Class of 2023
Histone Replacement

Undergraduate Thesis Students

  • Vietta Kuntz • Class of 2023 •
  • Audrey Orlowski • Class of 2023 •
  • Lynn Fu • Class of 2022 • Pathway of Protamine-Induced Nucleosome Replacement
  • Kate Jones • Class of 2021 • Characterizing the Histone-to-Protamine Replacement Pathway
  • Donna Roscoe • Class of 2021 • Comparing DNA Folding by Different Condensing Agents
  • Youna Choi • Class of 2021 • DNA Folding by the SARS-CoV-2 Nucleocapsid Protein
  • Ndukwo Okoronkwo • Class of 2020 • Cardiovascular Diseases in Egypt: Exploring Cultural and Economic Conditions to Inform Intervention Strategies
  • Ruth Mosunmade • Class of 2020 • Unraveling the histone replacement pathway in sperm
  • Ryan McMillan • Class of 2020 • From loops to toroids: investigating the protamine-induced DNA condensation process
  • Emily Ma • Class of 2020 • Repackaging DNA: from nucleosome core particles to protamine loops
  • Hilary Bediako • Class of 2019 • Determining the pathway for protamine-induced
  • DNA loop and toroid formation in sperm
  • Ashwin Balaji • Class of 2019 • Characterizing the mechanism of DNA
  • loop formation by protamine
  • Peter Cho • Class of 2019 • Tracking the kinematics of the
  • zebrafish startle response
  • Bishop Grimm • Class of 2018 • Toward force characterization of protamine condensed DNA
  • Luka Devenica • Class of 2017 • Building an optical trap
  • Adam Smith • Class of 2017 • Measuring DNA folding by protamine
  • Marco Catipovic • Class of 2014 • Measuring the viscoelastic properties of zebrafish embryos
  • Clay Contee • Hampshire College Class of 2014 • Atomic force microscopy for undergraduate laboratories
  • Robert Schwab • Class of 2013 • Stepwise mechanism of DNA condensation in sperm
  • Frederick Shipley • Class of 2013 • Using backscattered detection to build an optical profilometer

Carter Lab Alumni

Oliver Polachino • Physics and Math, Class of 2026
(January 2023-present) •

David Brown • , Class of 2025
(Summer 2022-present) •

Jonathan Xing • BCBP and Anthropology, Class of 2025
(January 2023-present) •

Jai Dreher • Physics and Math, Class of 2025
(January 2023-present) •

Jai Dreher • BCBP and English, Class of 2025
(Summer 2022-present) •

Melanie Hur • Physics and LJST, Class of 2025
(Summer 2022-present) •

Gigi Golden • Undeclared, Class of 2024
(Summer 2021-Summer 2022) •

Isabel Hardy • Undeclared, Class of 2024
(January 2021-present) •

Daniel Oo • Undeclared, Class of 2024
(January 2021-present) •

Michael Liu • Undeclared, Class of 2024
(January 2021-2022) •

Alejandra Velasquez • BCBP, Class of 2024
(January 2022-present) •

Jake Kim • Neuroscience, Class of 2023
(January 2022-present) •

Audrey Orlowski • BCBP and Math, Class of 2023 (January 2022-present) •

Vietta Kuntz • Physics and BCBP, Class of 2023
(Summer 2020-present) •

Joanna Idrovo • BCBP, Class of 2023
(Summer 2020-Summer 2021) •

Genaro Torres • BCBP, Class of 2022
(Summer 2020-Spring 2022) •

Lynn Fu • BCBP, Class of 2022
(January 2019-Spring 2022) •

Andrea Boskovic • Math and Statistics, Class of 2021
(Summer 2018- Summer 2021) •
Andrea is currently in Stats graduate school at University of Washington.

Kate Jones • BCBP, Class of 2021
(Summer 2018-Summer 2021) •
Kate is currently at Yale to work as a postbac in the Lucas Lab. He plans to do a MD/PhD in 2 years.

Donna Roscoe • BCBP and Psychology, Class of 2021
(January 2019 – Summer 2021) •
Donna is currently a graduate student at the Mayo Clinic in Minnesota.

Youna Choi • Neuro, Class of 2022
(January 2019) •
Youna is currently a graduate student at Brown, working at the NIH.

Yilikal Sarka • BCBP, Class of 2021
(Summer 2017) •
Yilikal is planning on heading back to Ethiopia.

Ryan McMillan • BCBP and Physics, Class of 2020
(January 2017-Summer 2020) •
Ryan won a Fulbright Fellowship and will work in the Dietz Lab in Germany next year. He also won an NSF Fellowship as an undergraduate and will start at Harvard Biophysics the following Fall.

Emily Ma • BCBP, Class of 2020
(Summer 2017-Summer 2020) •
Emily will be a Q Fellow at Amherst College before heading off to medical school.

Ruth Mosunmade • BCBP, Class of 2020
(Summer 2017-Spring 2020) •
Ruth is planning on attending medical school after a postbac year at Elms College.

Ndukwo (Biafra) Okoronkwo • Asian Studies and Global Health, Class of 2020
(Fall 2019-Spring 2020) •
Biafra will be doing contract tracing in the coronavirus pandemic after graduating. He is planning on going to graduate school to get a Masters in Public Health in about 3 years.

Peter Cho • BCBP, Class of 2019
(Summer 2016-Summer 2019) •
Peter is currently at Biomedical Engineering graduate school at Duke.

Ashwin Balaji • BCBP, Class of 2019
(January 2018-Summer 2019) •
Ashwin is currently in the Biophysics graduate program at Stanford.

Hilary Bediako • BCBP, Class of 2019
(Summer 2016-Summer 2019) •
Hilary is currently at medical school at Penn.

Moumita Dasgupta • Teaching Fellow while at Amherst
(Summer 2016-Summer 2018) •
Moumita went to Smith for a Visiting Assistant Professorship after Amherst. She is now an Assistant Professor at Augsberg University in Minnesota.

Bishop Grimm • Physics, Class of 2018
(Summer 2016-Spring 2018) •
Bishop is in materials science graduate school.

Obinna Ukogu • BCBP and Math, Class of 2018
(January 2015-Summer 2018) •
After leaving Amherst, Obinna took a financial research position with Capstone Research. He is planning to go to Math graduate school in Fall 2020 at University of Washington.

Adam Smith • BCBP, Class of 2017
(Summer 2015-Summer 2017) •
Adam worked for a year as a legal intern at McAndrews, Held, and Malloy in DC. Now he is in law school at Stanford and is also getting a Masters in Bioengineering there.

Luka Devenica • BCBP and Physics, Class of 2017
(Summer 2014-Summer 2018) •
Luka is currently in physics graduate school at Emory.

Elizabeth White • BCBP, Class of 2017
(Summer 2014-Summer 2017) •
Elizaeth is currently in biophysics graduate school at University of Chicago and is working in the Scherer Lab.

Matt Woop • Physics, Class of 2016E
(Summer 2014-Spring 2015) •
Matt is currently a data engineer with iSentium in Miami, FL.

Ji Hoon Lee • Physics, Class of 2016
(Summer 2013-Spring 2014) •
Ji Hoon did a theory thesis with Professors Loinaz and Jagu. After studying at Cambridge for a year and then working at McGill, Ji Hoon is currently at the Perimeter Institute for physics graduate school.

Eileen Troconis Gonzalez • Biology, Class of 2015
(Spring 2015) •
Eileen did her thesis with Joe Trapani in Biology in collaboration with the Carter Lab. She then went to Cambridge for a year and is now at Cornell doing a VMD/PhD.

Terri-Anne Hultum • Physics, Class of 2015
(Summer 2012 – Summer 2013) •
After Amherst, Terri went to computer science graduate school at NC State.

Clay Contee • Physics, Class of 2014 (Hampshire College)
(Fall 2013 – Spring 2014) •
After graduating, did a one year Bridge program at University of Massachusetts, then a Masters at Illinois Institute of Technology before heading to Penn for physics graduate school.

Matt Kurek • Physics, Class of 2014
(Summer 2013 – Fall 2014) •
Currently a programmer at Rockstar Games in Massachusetts.

Raysa Cabrejo • Chemistry, Class of 2014
(Spring 2013) •
Raysa went to medical school at Yale and graduated in 2019 with an MD/MHS. She did a 1-year surgery internship at Yale New Haven Hospital and will be continuing her residency next year at Dartmouth-Hitchcock Medical Center in their plastic and reconstructive surgery program.

Shahzad Anwar • BCBP, Class of 2014
(Summer 2012) •
After Amherst, Shahzad went to chemical engineering at Columbia. He interned for Boeing and is currently working at Amazon.

Marco Catipovic • BCBP, Class of 2014
(Summer 2012 – Summer 2014) •
Currently a graduate student in Harvard’s Biophysics program working in the Rapoport lab. Marco got his PhD in 2020!

Paul Tyler • Biology, Class of 2014
(Fall 2011-Spring 2012) •
Currently at Harvard graduate school working in the Dougan Lab at the Dana Farber Cancer Institute and studying cancer immunology using mouse models.

Robert Flynn • Physics and Music, Class of 2013
(January 2012) •
After graduating he took a position as the Orchestral Graduate Associate here at Amherst College. Currently working in Boston, MA.

Cheyenne Teng • Physics, Class of 2013
(January 2012) •
Currently in Electrical Engineering graduate school at Princeton working in Gerard Wysocki’s lab on laser spectroscopy.

Robert Schwab • BCBP, Class of 2013
(Fall 2011-Spring 2013) •
After graduating he worked at UPenn Medical School in the June lab doing HIV and Leukemia research. He graduated from medical school at UPenn in 2019 and is a resident at Hospital UPenn (HUP).

Fan Feng • Chemistry and Economics, Class of 2013
(Spring 2011) •
Currently doing energy trading with DC Energy located in Vienna, VA.

Frederick Shipley • Physics and BCBP, Class of 2013
(Summer 2010-Spring 2013) •
After graduating he worked in the Leifer Lab at Princeton doing research in neuroscience using optogenetics. Currently he is a graduate student in Harvard’s Biophysics program and is working in the Lehtinen Lab.

Ysabel Woody • Black Studies, Class of 2012
(Summer 2010) •
After graduating she worked in alumni and parent programs at Amherst College. Currently she is working in Washington DC at the American Association for the Advancement of Science and is thinking about physics graduate school and energy research

Robot Team

Robot Team 2019

Eva Lau ’19, Lynn Fu ’22, Mina Lee ’22
Josh Burns ’22, Ajay Sarathy ’21, Flanagan Waldherr ’22

Robot Team 2018

Devin Epstein ’21, Ingrid Shu ’20, Donna Roscoe ’21,
Allan Phillips ’20, Abdoulaye Sanogo ’19, Ellen Mutter ’18