Salena received her Bachelor of Science in Biochemistry from California State University, San Marcos. During her undergraduate studies, she was a California Institute for Regenerative Medicine (CIRM) Bridges to Stem Cell Research scholar, completing a one year internship in Larry Goldstein’s lab at the University of California San Diego. While at UCSD Salena utilized induced pluripotent stem cells to investigate the etiology of Late Onset Alzheimer’s Disease. As a graduate student in the Butler laboratory, Salena is interested in further defining the molecular mechanisms and signaling pathways that give rise to different classes of dorsal interneurons. Broadly, Salena hopes her research will aid in the development of novel therapeutics for damaged or diseased nervous systems. Apart from the lab, she enjoys running, camping, and spending time with her friends and family.