Meet Our Team


Dipesh Niraula, PhD

Applied Research Scientist

Dipesh Niraula is an applied research scientist working in Dr. Issam El Naqa’s research group. He received his Ph.D. and M.S. in Theoretical and Computational Device Physics from the University of Toledo. He worked in Dr. El Naqa’s lab as a post-doctoral researcher in the Department of Radiation Oncology at the University of Michigan and then in the Department of Machine Learning at Moffitt Cancer Center. During his post-doctoral research, he developed ARCliDS, a clinical decision support software for AI-assisted decision-making in adaptive RT and developed a hybrid quantum deep reinforcement learning framework for decision-making in adaptive RT. ARCliDS is capable of recognizing dose-response, predicting RT outcome, and recommending optimal dose adaptation. Currently he is engaged in a Human-AI interaction type experiment for evaluating ARCliDS.

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Eduardo Carranza, BS

Machine Learning Engineer

Eduardo is an experienced computer engineer with a background in research and development, software development, and data analytics. Previously, he worked as a Senior Applications Programmer Analyst in The Quality & Performance Department at UTHealth Neurosciences, where he developed robust software and analytical solutions. His primary area of research is the applications of Natural Language Processing to oncology. He is responsible for developing Machine Learning infrastructure that integrates Electric Health Records and molecular data into machine learning tools and serves as the liaison between the Collaborative Data Science Core and the Machine Learning department. 

Eduardo Carranza has published a paper entitled: 

Development of Low-Cost Point-of-Care Technologies for Cervical Cancer Prevention Based on a Single-Board Computer 

Eduardo is pleased to be working with his research trainee Yasmin Saeed.


Naveena Gorre, MS

Naveena’s primary area of research interest is Computer Vision. She holds master’s degree in Computer Engineering from Southern Illinois University Edwardsville and worked as Data Scientist at bioMerieux for a year. At Moffitt she will be responsible for developing ML infrastructure and integrate the PACS systems to data servers. She is working on developing an API which acts an interface, amalgamating the developed/ongoing machine learning models, visualization, interpretability and explainability techniques. This API would not only help doctors to elucidate various model results but also for researchers, data scientists in flexible prototyping. Other projects include - Liver classification for HCC, pathology data analysis. 

Naveena is pleased to be working with her Research Database Coordinator (Mohammad Adam Kazmouz) and research student trainee (Duong Tung Mai).

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Kurukulasuriya Ruwani Fernando, PhD

Applied Postdoctoral Fellow 

Ruwani recently graduated from the University of South Florida (USF), where she earned a Ph.D. in Mathematics with concentration in Statistics. She received her B.Sc. from the University of Colombo, Sri Lanka, and M.A in Statistics from the University of South Florida. Her research interests focus on Probabilistic Deep Learning, Medical Computer Vision and Machine Learning. Her dissertation research is centered on Uncertainty Quantification in Deep and Statistical learning with applications in Bio-medical Image Analysis. She has held internships at the Florida Center for Cybersecurity located at USF, and Citigroup, Tampa in its quantitative research division. She has also served in the American Statistical Association (ASA), USF student chapter as the President.


Glebys Gonzalez

Applied Postdoctoral Fellow 

Glebys received her BS in Computer Science from Simon Bolivar University, Venezuela, and her Ph.D. from the School of Industrial Engineering at Purdue University. Her research focuses on Machine Learning applied to Medical Robotics. She has developed systems for workload recognition and touchless image manipulation in the OR, surgical teleoperation in the presence of delays, and automatic recognition and execution of surgical maneuvers. In addition, Glebys has collaborated with the Indiana University School of Medicine and developed grants for Intuitive Surgical, NIH, and the Department of Defense (Office of the Assistant Secretary of Defense for Health Affairs).


Elaheh Sobhani

Applied Postdoctoral Fellow 

Elaheh Sobhani started in Issam El Naqa, M.A.,Ph.D, DABR, FAAPM, FIEEE, FAIMBE Lab on April 10, 2023, as an Applied Postdoctoral Fellow.
Elaheh Sobhani received her dual Ph.D. from the University of Grenoble Alpes (UGA), Grenoble, France, and Sharif University of Technology (SUT), Tehran, Iran in Electrical Engineering with a focus on Data Mining in March 2022. She received her B.Sc. from Shiraz University, Iran and M.Sc. from Sharif University of Technology (SUT), Tehran, Iran, both in Electrical Engineering. She was also a member of Iran's National Organization for the Development of Talented Talents (NODET) during her studies. Her research interests focus on applications of Tensor Decomposition in Machine Learning, Hidden Information Retrieval and Optimization. Her Ph.D. thesis focused on Tensor Decomposition Applications in data/text mining and data fusion. As a postdoctoral researcher at Moffitt, Elaheh is engaged in fusing relevant information by developing deep learning models so that treatment can be personalized for each patient.


Palak Dave, PhD

Applied Postdoctoral Fellow


Palak Dave started in Issam El Naqa, M.A.,Ph.D, DABR, FAAPM, FIEEE, FAIMBE Lab on February 6, 2023, as an Applied Postdoctoral Fellow.

Palak received her Ph.D. and M.S. in Computer Science from University of South Florida. Her research interests include Computer Vision, Machine Learning, and Pattern Recognition. Her current research focuses on deep learning for histopathology image analysis.


Mohammad Adam Kazmouz 

Research Database Coordinator 

Mohammad Adam Kazmouz graduated from the University of Florida with a Biochemistry degree and is currently taking growth years to further challenge himself as he applies to medical school. During his undergrad studies, Mohammad was a chemistry tutor where he mastered the ability to break down complex information into digestible simple concepts while appealing to the unique learning styles of his students. He beams positivity and believes that our moods are transferable to others. This translates into Mohammad’s experience with Gulfside Hospice and Florida Cancer Foundation infusion center where he focuses on being a calm, compassionate, and fun companion as he comforts patients in stressful situations.

Mohammad volunteers and shadows at hospitals throughout Tampa Bay to gain diverse holistic clinical experiences to help prepare him for his future and maintain his humanity as a physician, Mohammad’s strong time management and self-motivation skills developed through UF’s rigorous academic course loads and his research experiences will give him the skills to succeed in the Machine Learning Lab. Mohammad hopes that through researching under the guidance of Naveena Gorre, MS, he will be able to make meaningful improvements in patient care and have valuable insight that will make him a better physician.


Orabelema Tonye-Abere

Research Associate I

Over the course of her educational pursuits, Orabelema has worked in a variety of volunteer and peer mentoring positions. After her graduation, she hopes to get into medical school and continue building her path towards her desired career of Forensic Pathology.


Kazi Alam, PhD

Applied Postdoctoral Fellow 

Kazi Alam, a computational-theoretical physicist, and recent Ph.D. graduate from the University of Florida, is enthusiastic about applying his expertise to Dr. El Naqa's team. His Ph.D. research is focused on studying mesoscopic conductors to find an analytical model for metal-to-insulator transition in three-dimensional systems. Kazi has experience with numerical simulations, Markov Chain Monte Carlo methods,  Random Matrix Theory techniques and their applications in physical problems. Currently, he is working with genetic and imaging data to build machine-learning models for different types of cancers.


Oren Edrich

Research Associate I 

Oren Edrich is a recent graduate from the University of South Florida, where he earned his bachelor’s in biomedical sciences. Oren started at Moffitt as a Research Trainee in 2022 and now works as research associate in Dr. El Naqa’s lab. Oren has a background in computers and software programming, including mobile application development. As an aspiring physician Oren hopes to continue working in research at the intersection of medicine and technology.


Kara Zupancic, BS

Executive Assistant 

Kara originally started with Moffitt's Diversity team back in 2018. She holds a bachelor’s degree in Teaching and Training Technical Professionals from the University of Akron in Akron, Ohio. She has previously worked at Louis Stokes Cleveland VA Medical Center as a Pharmacy Administrative Support Clerk, as well as, SummaCare, Inc. as a Project Specialist in Medical Records and Data Management. She will be responsible for all administrative tasks within our department.