Ivann Martinez graduated from California State University Long Beach in 2007. For most of his undergraduate career, he participated in numerous projects in the lab of Dr. Judy Brusslan. In the Brusslan Lab, they were studying the process of photoacclimation in A. thaliana, and later shifted their attention to the process of senescense. Some of his projects in the lab were to 1) determine the sub-localization of two chloroplast-localized proteases (cAAP and cGEP), which they hypothesized to be important for senescence; 2) create a cAAP::GFP fusion protein A. Thaliana mutant; 3) develop poly-clonal antibodies that are specific for cAAP and cGEP. As an undergraduate, he was also a member of numerous programs designed to increase access to research careers for minorities (MARC, NSF-REU, and NIH-RISE). He also presented posters in numerous national and regional conferences: American Society for Plant Biologists (ASPB), Annual Biomedical Research Conference for Minority Student, and Western Photosynthesis Conference. He was also an ASPB travel grant recipient for two years in a row.
His research goals shifted from plant biology to stem cell biology. Under the mentorship of Dr. Nicole zur Nieden, he became interested in understanding how to differentiate human embryonic stem cells into mature osteoblasts. They used this system as a model to assess the effects of conventional and harm-reduction tobacco products on pre-natal bone development using both a conventional molecular biology approach and a videobioinformatics approach. Their goal was to find a fast, affordable, and efficient way of analyzing toxicological effects of tobacco products on human health.
Ivann recieved his Ph.D. in Cell, Molecular, and Developmental Biology from the University of California Riverside in 2014
Link to Ivann's Ph.D. Dissertation