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Lab Members


Martin Breuss, PhD

Assistant Professor

Boettcher Investigator

Martin's Trainings:

  • Maximizing Mentoring (2022), CSD

  • HEAL Foundations in Equity Certificate (2023), HEAL

  • Raising a Resilient Scientist (2022-2023), NIH

  • Implicit Bias Training (2022-), BSP Admissions Committee Member

  • Bystander/Upstander Training (2024), ORE

Martin was born in Austria (the one in Europe without the kangaroos) and did his undergraduate and graduate studies in Vienna. He performed his PhD studies with Dr. David Keays at the Institute of Molecular Pathology (IMP), Vienna. From his time there he maintains a love for tubulins and a conflicted relationship with pigeons. He then joined the laboratory of Dr. Joseph Gleeson at the University of California, San Diego, as a postdoctoral scholar where he worked on the elucidation of the genetics of recessive human disorders. During his time in southern California, he also discovered his love for genetic mosaicism, which complements his interest in cellular mosaicism during brain development.

When Martin is not in the lab, he enjoys watching and playing basketball, biking, playing board games, and eating new and exciting meals.

For Martin’s faculty page, please see here.

Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion Statement

The Breuss lab believes that everyone should have equal access to science, and we strive to create an inclusive environment that welcomes and respects diversity in all its forms, including of culture, race, age, gender identity, sexual orientation, and ability. We value scientists as people first and believe that diversity of background increases creativity and innovation, and it will help us to become better scientists and humans. We reject all forms of racism and discrimination and acknowledge at the same time that we are all subject to biases counteracting our better judgment. We are committed to our ongoing learning about and improvement in these topics, and we welcome prospective lab members to share new ideas on how to support forms of diversity in our group and environment.


Sara Wirth, BS

Lab Manager- Research Services Senior Professional

Sara grew up in Washington state and moved to San Diego after high school to get away from the rain. She graduated from the University of California- San Diego with a BS in Biology with emphasis in Physiology and Neuroscience in 2015. She spent 12 years in California, including some time in the Bay Area working as a lab manager at Stanford University. Sara has worked in both industry and academia giving her a wide range of lab experience. She moved to Colorado in 2021 to help Martin start his lab. Martin and Sara also worked together in the Gleeson lab at UCSD during Martin's Post Doc. Sara enjoys wearing multiple hats and solving problems from start to finish. She is currently studying part-time at CU Boulder in the Professional Master's in Data Science program. 

Sara is also passionate about fitness, animal training, and exploring Colorado with her rescue dog, Stella. 

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Jonathan Pitsch, MS


Colorado has always been home for Jon. After high school, he attended the University of Colorado Denver where he completed a BS in Pure and Applied Physics in 2018. In 2021, he graduated from Colorado School of Mines with an MS in Quantitative Biosciences and Bioengineering. While completing his master’s, Jon specialized in applying programming and machine learning to study biological problems. Throughout his education, Jon has worked in a variety of research and industrial roles and is excited to implement his computational skills to contribute to research in the Breuss Lab.


In his free time, Jon enjoys cooking, listening to music, playing video games, and immersing himself in nature.

Josh Mejia, Undergraduate

Student Researcher

Boettcher Scholar

Josh is a Computer Engineering undergraduate at The University of Denver. Josh joined the lab in November 2022 via a Boettcher Collaboration grant. Thanks to funding from an additional Boettcher Collaboration grant, he will continue working with us through the summer of 2023.  


Josh describes himself as piecing together life as he goes. He’s a Colorado native, so expanding to new horizons after graduation is what he spends his time daydreaming about. Maybe he’ll be a rancher in Texas, maybe a mechanic in Alaska, maybe a software engineer in Lithuania, but either way the next part of this journey is most exciting to him. When he’s not in class, or working on homework, or working on projects, or studying, or writing lab reports, Josh enjoys waking up early to read in his favorite armchair, and staying up late writing in the same chair.


Rose Doss, BS

HMGGP Ph.D. Student

Rose grew up in the rustic acres of central Texas. In 2011, she traded cow pastures for the Rockies and started her undergraduate studies at UCCS, kindling her passion for scientific research under the mentorship of Dr. Wolkow, focusing on conserved proteins in fission yeast.


With a bachelor's in molecular biology in her pocket by 2016, Rose then explored work in audiovisual production in medical education, an exposure that deepened her fervor for advancing the field of medicine through research. In 2022, she began her journey of graduate school in the Human Medical Genetics and Genomics program at Anschutz Medical Campus, joining Martin's lab for her thesis work the following summer. 


Beyond the world of lab projects, Rose enjoys getting her hands in the garden, traveling to new places, and hiking and photographing the majestic Rocky Mountains.

Martin and Sara at the 2021 CSD Retreat in Breckenridge

Bowling with the other labs in our section. (Curtis won). 

Lab Photo November 2022 with rotation student, Rose. 

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