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Current Residents and Fellows

Lee, Whayoung

Whayoung Lee, MD


Whayoung (or, Why) was born and raised in Seoul, South Korea. She graduated from Ewha Womans University School of Medicine and completed her intern year at Samsung Medical Center in Seoul. She later conducted xenotransplantation research at the Starzl Transplantation Institute at the University of Pittsburgh, where she investigated humoral immune reactions against porcine carbohydrate antigens in various tissues. After completing AP/CP training, she will be pursuing GI/Liver fellowship at UCI.

Nakasaki, Manando

Manando Nakasaki, MD, PhD


Manando was born in Kure, Japan. He received his MD from Osaka University. He later earned his PhD in orthopedics at Osaka University after pursuing his residency in orthopedic surgery. He then moved to the US and pursued postdoctoral research at the University of California, San Diego, where his work focused on how altered tissue stiffness affects the progression of fibrosis. In his spare time, he enjoys spending time with his wife, Tae, and their son and daughter. Manando will be pursuing bone and soft tissue pathology training after residency.

Tsai, Tsung-Lin

Tsung-Lin Tsai, MD, PhD


Tsung-Lin was born in Tainan City, Taiwan. After earning his MD from the National Taiwan University School of Medicine, he served in the Navy as a military doctor for one year. He then came to the United States in 2008 and began pursuing a PhD in Biomedical Engineering at the University of Wisconsin-Madison. His research focused on studying the bone marrow niche for mesenchymal stem cells and using the stem cells with biomaterial scaffolds for musculoskeletal tissue engineering. He received the New Investigator Recognition Award at the Annual Meeting of the Orthopedic Research Society in 2015. Tsung-Lin enjoys reading, traveling, and spending time with his family. He will go to NIH for Transfusion Medicine fellowship after residency.


Jamie Nakagiri, MD


Jamie was born in Thousand Oaks, California. She received her BA in Psychology, with a concentration in Neuroscience, at Boston College, where she also minored in music. She earned her MD at the University of Central Florida in Orlando. In her spare time, Jamie enjoys going to theme parks and is a self-proclaimed Disney fanatic. She is pursuing AP/CP training.


Sami Souccar, MD


Sami was born in Damascus, Syria, and moved to the United States following high school to attend California State University, Long Beach, where he received his BS in Computer Science. He then went on to earn his MD degree from St. George’s University, and conducted research regarding Intracystic Papillary Carcinoma and also published a forensic case report of fatal Chikungunya. Outside of medicine, Sami enjoys playing basketball, running, traveling, and spending time with his family. Sami is pursuing AP/CP training.


Jana Tarabay, MD


Born and raised in Lebanon, Jana attended the Lebanese University in Beirut, where she earned her MD After graduation, she moved to the United States and joined the Ahmanson/UCLA Adult Congenital Heart Disease Center, where she conducted several research projects focusing on single ventricle physiology, transcatheter heart valves, and septal occluder devices. Besides medicine and research, Jana enjoys hiking, biking, and swimming, and loves traveling and spending time with her family. Jana is pursuing AP/CP training.


Jack Guccione, MD


Jack comes to UCI from Loma Linda University School of Medicine and will be going into forensic pathology. He enjoys living and exploring Orange County with his wife, Michelle Kim, and dogs, Doc and Brady. Jack enjoys the educational, collegial, and supportive environment the UCI pathology residency provides.


Jane Ly, MD


Jane was born in Vietnam but immigrated to the US with her parents when she was two years old. She grew up in Monterey Park until her family moved to Arizona, where she attended Arizona State University for her degrees in political science and foreign languages and then the University of Arizona - Phoenix for her MD. In her spare time, she likes playing board games and following entirely too many eSports leagues. She is pursuing AP training.


Joaquin Ponce-Zepeda, MD


I am a native of the East Los Angeles area, and I have been passionate about patient care since I was 16. I am an anteater at heart as I was a premed major at UC Irvine for undergrad, and afteward, attended medical school at AUC. In the future, I hope to be an upstanding physician who can give back to my hometown community. I was eager to join the filed of Pathology as there is currently an exciting movement in translational research that is pushing the world of medicine forward. Medicine is the molecular age of diagnosing cancer and other diseases, with an ever-growing array of biomarkers, and I would like to help bridge the gap between the hospital floor and the lab bench. I am especially interested in gastrointestinal pathology and cytopathology, I currently participate in research in both fields. I am very honored to be a part of the UC Irvine family as the institution is constantly on the leading edge of research and innovation. Go Anteaters!  Zot, zot, zot!


Jack Reid, MD


Jack was born and raised in Burma. He attended the University of California, Riverside, where he received a BS in Neuroscience. He then received his MD from Ross University School of Medicine. Jack is pursuing AP/CP training with a special interest in hematopathology and molecular genetic pathology. In his spare time, he enjoys basketball, swimming, surfing, and spending time with his wife and two dogs, Junior and Oreo.


Sherehan Zada, M.D.


Sherehan was born and raised in Aleppo, Syria. She earned her MD from Aleppo University of Medical Sciences. After obtaining her medical degree, she completed a residency in dermatology. After completing her residency, she moved to the United States and completed several rotations in pathology. Her current academic interests include dermatopathology and gastrointestinal pathology. Sherehan is currently pursuing AP/CP training. Besides medicine Sherehan enjoys reading, cooking, watching movies, traveling and loves spending time with her husband and two kids.

Haijuan Gao

Haijuan Gao, M.D., Ph.D.


Haijuan was born in Hebei, China. She completed her MD and residency in gynecology and obstetrics at Xi'an Jiaotong University. She later earned her PhD in Public Health from Purdue University. Prior to joining UC Irvine, she was an Assistant Professor at the University of Oklahoma where she founded and led the women's cancer research lab. Haijuan has published research on cervical cancer prevention, HPV vaccine promotion, and health disparities among marginalized populations. In her spare time, she enjoys dancing and traveling.

Sami Neupane

Samikshya Neupane, M.D.


Samikshya 'Sami' Neupane earned her medical degree at Kathmandu University School of Medical Sciences, followed by a year internship in the hematology-oncology unit at Civil Service Hospital in Nepal. She completed three years of AP/CP training at Tribhuvan University Teaching Hospital and continued working independently as a pathologist before moving to the United States in 2018. She is determined to continue her journey as a pathologist with a special interest in hematopath. Besides pathology, she loves watching movies and traveling with her beloved husband.

Arjun Reddy

Arjun Reddy, M.D.


Arjun was born in Detroit, Michigan and attended college at Tufts University. In college, he completed a double major in politcal science and biology and earned a BA degree in 2015. He thereafter attended the University of Southern California (USC) for his medical degree. During medical school, he also enrolled in the dual-degree MD/MBA program jointly with the Marshall School of Business of USC and the Keck School of Medicine of USC and earned his MD and MBA degrees in 2020. Arjun enjoys playing tennis, skiing, traveling, and hiking in his free tie. Arjun is pursuing AP/CP training.

Semenova Kapitolina

Kapitolina Semenova, M.D.


Kapitolina (Lina) was born and raised in Tomsk, Russia. She graduated from Siberian State Medical University in 2015. Lina then moved to the USA to work at BEnaroya Research Institute in Seattle, Washington, where she did immunology basic science research devoted to type one diabetes and rheumatoid arthritis. Outside of medicine, Lina enjoys traveling, paragliding, snowboarding, hiking, horseback riding, and much more. She is pursuing AP/CP training.

Sonia Veran-Taguibao

Sonia Veran-Taguibao, MD

Women's Health / Selective Surgical Pathology Fellow

Gabriella Cardoza-Favarato

Gabriella Cardoza-Favarato, MD

Hematopathology Fellow

Medical School: Uniformed Services University of Health Sciences F. Edward Herbert School of Medicine

Residency Training: Family Medicine, David Grant Medical Center, Travis AFB, CA; Anatomic and Clinical Pathology, San Antonio Uniformed Services Health Education Consortium, Joint Base San Antonio, TX

Fellowship Training: Cytopathology, San Antonio Uniformed Services Health Education Consortium, Joint Base San Antonio, TX; Gastrointestinal Pathology, Ameripath Institute of GI Pathology, Cleveland, OH

Mahra Nourbakhsh

Mahra Nourbakhsh, MD

Cytopathology Fellow

Mkhikian, Haik

Haik Mkhikian, MD, PhD

Research Fellow

Graduate Education: PhD - Biomedical Sciences - UC Irvine
Medical School: UC Irvine School of Medicine
Residency Training: Research Track Clinical Pathology, UC Irvine
Fellowship Training: Research Fellow, UC Irvine

Yah Hu

Yan Hu, MD

Women's Health / Selective Surgical Pathology Fellow

Graduate School: Virginia Commonwealth University
Medical School: China Medical University
Residency Training: Loma Linda Medical Center

Ahmad Charifa

Ahmad Charifa, MD

GI Pathology Fellow

Medical School: Aleppo University School of Medicine
Residency Training: Anatomic and Clinical Pathology, Yale School of Medicine