Melissa Tjota, MD, PhD


I was born in Buffalo, NY and lived there for 13 years before moving out to Seattle, WA. After high school, I traveled back to the east coast to attend Harvard University where I obtained my BA in Biochemical Sciences. During the spring of my senior year, I realized I wanted to take some time off before starting medical school in what my college roommate termed a “quarter-life crisis”. I ended up moving to San Francisco to work for Close Concerns, a healthcare information company that focuses on diabetes and obesity. In 2009, I moved to Chicago and joined the Medical Scientist Training Program at the University of Chicago where I studied signaling mechanisms in dendritic cells and monocytes that promoted allergic airway inflammation in the lab of Dr. Anne Sperling. In my free time, my husband and I enjoy cooking, reading, checking out the restaurant scene in Chicago (let me know if you want recommendations!), seeing the latest exhibit at the Field Museum, and running along the lakefront. I’m looking forward to continuing my training at U of C!