Hans A. Hofmann, Ph.D.

Dr. Hofmann is the Director of the CCBB and a professor of integrative biology at UT Austin. His research interests focus on the neurogenomic analyses of social behavior and social evolution. He received his Ph.D. in biology from the University of Leipzig and the Max-Planck Institute in Seewiesen. He pioneered behavioral and neurogenomics in cichlid fishes to analyze and understand the molecular and neural basis of social behavior and its evolution. He developed many of the functional genomics resources for cichlids and has been a co-initiator of the cichlid genome consortium.




Dhivya Arasappan, M.S., (Research Scientist)

Dhivya Arasappan has 6+ years experience analyzing NGS data from multiple platforms: Illumina, PacBio and SOLiD. Her areas of expertise include: de novo genome assembly, particularly using hybrid sequencing data, RNA-Seq analysis, exome analysis, and benchmarking of bioinformatics tools. She is the research educator for the Big Data in Biology Freshman Research Initiative stream and teaches an RNA-Seq course as part of the Summer School for Big Data in Biology.

Benni Goetz, M.S., (Research Engineering/Scientist Associate III)

Benni Goetz joined the Bioinformatics Consulting Group in 2012. Before joining, Benni studied differential geometry at the University of Texas and completed a Master's Degree in Mathematics.


Dennis Wylie, Ph.D., (Research Scientist)

Dr. Dennis Wylie joined the Bioinformatics group in 2015. He has experience in NGS data analysis (including variant calling and analysis of RNA-seq and metagenomic data) and application of statistical and machine learning methods to biological data sets for biomarker discovery, pathway analysis, classification and regression modeling, and motif analysis. Prior to UT, Dennis earned a PhD in Biophysics from UC Berkeley applying stochastic simulation methods to problems in immunology and did postdoctoral work in modeling the transmission of infectious diseases on contact networks before spending six years as a bioinformatician in industry.


Laurie Alvarez

Executive Assistant

Laurie is affiliated with the Center for 25% time (and Integrative Biology 75% time). In relation to her Center duties, she is responsible for all aspects of the BEACON award, including but not limited to, faculty, staff, and student appointments; travel (RTA documents and reimbursements); inventory; purchasing (including equipment); time sheets; tuition payments; etc.


: 512-232-1947

Rayna Harris

Training and Outreach Coordinator

Rayna is a graduate student in Hans Hofmann's lab. Her research interests focus on understanding the neuromolecular and endocrine mechanisms that regulate social behavior. As a CCBB Training and Outreach Coordinator, she organizes training opportunities and the Big Data in Biology Symposium.


: 512-475-7318

Nicole Elmer

Administrative Associate

Nicole designs and maintains the CCBB website, all print materials for CCBB-related events and promotion, in addition to design work for other PIs on campus. Nicole handles the large-format poster printing services for CCBB, assists with conferences, CCBB and service center accounting/purchasing needs, inventory, and some travel and student appointments. She also acts as archivist and writer for the History Project for the Department of Integrative Biology.


: 512-471-5261