Shehzad Z. Sheikh, MD, PhD
Associate Professor with Tenure – Medicine and Genetics
Division of Gastroenterology and Hepatology
Center of Gastrointestinal Biology and Disease
University of North Carolina School of Medicine
Office Telephone: 919-966-0745
Fax: 919-966-8929


Junior Faculty

Erin Steinbach, MD, PhD

Peanut allergy is the #1 cause of fatal anaphylaxis associated with a food allergy; increased intestinal barrier permeability in patients with peanut allergy is associated with more peanut allergen absorption and more severe reactions. I am studying why the intestinal barrier is dysfunctional in peanut allergy so we can develop targeted therapies for severe allergic reactions to peanut.


Post Doctoral Fellows

Kimberly Darlington, MD, PhD


Clinician interested in further defining the molecular signatures of patients with Ulcerative Colitis and Crohn’s Disease and determining how this may be used to both inform rational use of available therapies and lead to the development of new treatments for these patients.


Graduate Students

Co-Mentored by the Sheikh & Furey labs

Meaghan Marie Kennedy
Bioinformatics and Computational Biology

I am using RNA-seq, ATAC-seq, and other omics data to understand molecular differences between Crohn’s Disease (CD) and non-IBD patients, as well as the heterogeneity within CD. In particular, I am interested in how long non-coding RNAs alters the expression of protein-coding genes and affects the chromatin structure.

Co-Mentored by the Sheikh & Furey labs

Nina Nishiyama
Bioinformatics and Computational Biology

Crohn’s Disease and inflammatory bowel disease (IBD) are complex diseases with several susceptibility loci, but their role in the disease development is not fully understood. I apply statistical methods to combine genetic variant and molecular phenotype datasets to discover new regulatory mechanisms behind Crohn’s Disease and IBD susceptibility.


Clinical Coordinators

Grace Lian
Clinical Research Coordinator. Will be collecting and processing samples for research in the lab and helping with documents and applications. Grace will be working on our CHAMP, tissue repository, and upcoming Helmsley studies.

Moises Robles
Clinical Research Assistant. Responsible for learning the complex ins and outs of the Sheikh lab’s various clinical studies. Including patient consents and sample tracking for CHAMP, tissue repository, Helmsley, and future studies.


Lab Manager

Matthew Schaner

Lab manager responsible for equipment maintenance, supply ordering, and project organization/management. Research projects include ATAC-seq, CUT&RUN, RNA-seq, and IEC/LPMC isolation from mouse and human models.


Undergraduate Students

Benjamin Huan
Undergraduate Student at UNC with the Lineberger Partners Cancer Biology Program. Ben will be helping with the CHAMP study.


Administrative Assistant

Heather Solender
Tel:  (919)-962-2608


IBD Nurse Clinician

Christina M. Womble, RN, BSN
Tel: 919-537-3378
Fax: 919-843-6899