MD/PhD candidate Founding Member of TIMtalks
Omar is currently an independent MIT McGovern Fellow at the McGovern Institute for Brain Research at MIT. Previously, he was an MD/PhD student at Harvard Medical School/Harvard-MIT Health, Sciences, and Technology program and completed my PhD in Feng Zhang’s lab at the Broad Institute of MIT and Harvard in 2018. He has had multiple fellowship positions, including Friends of the McGovern Institute Fellowship, Paul and Daisy Soros Fellowship, National Science Foundation Graduate Fellowship, National Defense Science and Engineering Graduate Fellowship, and the NIH F30 National Research Service Award. He is currently on leave from Harvard Medical School while pursuing my independent research activities. In 2012, he graduated with a S.B. degree in Mechanical Engineering and Biological Engineering from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology as a Henry Ford II Scholar and Barry Goldwater Scholar.
His research interests are at the intersection of genome editing tools and computational biology where he is developing better molecular tools for manipulating cell circuits in diseases such as cancer. Previously, he worked at the MIT Koch Institute for Cancer Research on developing a nanotechnology-based urine test for diagnosing diseases, such as cancer and liver fibrosis, and at Flagship Ventures on leveraging the bacteria in the body to develop breakthrough therapeutics. His current work at the Broad Institute is focused on taking inspiration from bacteria for developing tools to manipulate and study the human genome in health and disease. His work is published in many journals, including Nature and Cell.
Omar is also passionate about innovation and entrepreneurship. He recently co-founded MODALYST, a business- to-business online wholesale platform for connecting emerging designers and boutiques, and the Harvard Medical Review, a peer-reviewed journal for student written articles. While as a senior at MIT, he also was a Founding Member of TIMtalks (Think. Inspire. Motivate. - Powerful Ideas by Passionate Students), a forum similar to TED talks to enable students at MIT to share and reflect on their big ideas, experiences, and endeavors, regardless of whether they have succeeded or failed.