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Student Opportunities

The EDGE Research Laboratory aims to prepare graduate students to be leaders in nutrition and to strive for excellence with content expertise, an innovative mindset and a professional voice.

Prospective Students

Creating leading researchers for the future is a major focus of the EDGE lab. Student trainees gain valuable real-world experience with research studies at KU Medical Center.

Our laboratory reaches out to our patients and the community to educate and empower people to make healthy lifestyle choices. Students training with Dr. Hamilton-Reeves obtain clinical and translational research experience. With opportunities including one-on-one patient care, patient education, wet lab bench science skills, applied statistical analyses and introductory medical informatics, students become prepared for duties in a wide range of positions in modern health care and research. Alumna of the EDGE lab have taken jobs as clinical dietitians and research dietitians.

Lab Medical Students

The EDGE lab participates in KU Medical Center's Summer Research Training Program. This provides an opportunity for current KU School of Medicine students interested in nutrition research to gain hands-on experience in an ongoing research project.

"The biggest advantage of joining the EDGE lab is the level of mentoring you receive as a student. Dr. Hamilton-Reeves is focused on helping you develop the necessary skills and knowledge to move into the job market, and she creates an environment of open communication. She has a lot of energy and excitement and makes your time in the lab productive, useful and fun. The most important thing I learned is that as a researcher, failure is a part of the job. It is how we respond and learn from those experiences that make us successful in our careers."
Lab Alumni


Austin Fehr worked to learn lab techniques to process whole blood samples through a ficoll gradient and analyze myeloid-derived suppressor cells and T regulatory cells (Tregs) by flow cytometry. He helped to analyze changes in MDSC and Treg counts in patients with prostate cancer who participated in our WARRIOR study.

Kellen Gil worked to learn lab techniques to process whole blood samples for flow cytometry. He learned to run ELISA assays to study Complement Factor H in patients with bladder cancer. Kellen also discussed nutrition and diet habits with patients with prostate cancer who participated in our WARRIOR study.


Dave Dimachkie helped to examine how genes involved in prostate cancer and immune signaling change in overweight men with prostate cancer who participated in a weight loss program before prostatectomy. He also worked with patients with bladder cancer, performing assessments and discussing nutrition with them.

Garret Kahle helped to develop a curriculum for the WARRIOR Weight Loss Study for men with localized prostate cancer. He worked to analyze immunohistochemistry data from the prostate tissue gained from prostatectomy. Garret also worked with patients with bladder cancer, performing assessments and discussing nutrition with them.


Nick Mahan analyzed data from studies that were just completed and created data tables and figures.

Vassili Glazyrine worked on the setup of a new study involving bladder cancer patients with diabetes. He also analyzed past data and searched literature for information on bladder cancer and bone health.


Tanner Isaacson worked with study participants and evaluated the communication index on the weight management curriculum.

Brian Barnes worked with study participants and designed databases for data collection.


Seth Atchison worked with study participants and processed lab samples. He also analyzed RNAseq data using IPA software.

Lucas Bider worked with study participants and developed tools to present curriculum for a weight loss study for prostate cancer patients.

“My experience in the EDGE lab far exceeded my expectations. The team provided me with a great balance of responsibility and independence. The EDGE lab is unique in that it provides both a clinical and bench research experience. With multiple projects going on at the same time, I enjoyed being able to choose what interested me the most and focus on that. Having never done research prior to working in the EDGE lab, the tools I gained were invaluable and the experiences traveling to conferences very rewarding.” – Tanner Isaacson

“Joining the EDGE lab allowed me to experience medical research from start to finish. In just eight weeks, I worked on preparing a study, enrolling study participants, collecting and processing participant data and analyzing and reporting that data. Moreover, the EDGE lab's dynamic research at the junction of nutrition and oncology gave me unique insights into patient care and the value of tailored nutrition and lifestyle interventions in a range of patient populations. No matter what area of medicine I choose to pursue, I know that my time with the EDGE lab has primed me to be a more effective physician-scientist and caregiver.” – Nick Mahan

Interested in learning more?

Please email Dr. Hamilton-Reeves to explore opportunities for students in the EDGE lab.

School of Medicine

University of Kansas Medical Center
Department of Urology
Mail Stop 3016
3901 Rainbow Boulevard
Kansas City, KS 66160
Phone: 913-588-6146