Smith Lab Summer wrap-up

  • Masked travel was back on the cards with Clare and Oyinda attending the NIAID Tuberculosis Research Unit (TBRU) network kick-off meeting meeting in Bethesda in June. Clare presented our work in the Mouse Core as part of the Myco3V team study Mycobacterial variation, vulnerability and virulence. The Myco3V team includes researchers from Brigham and Women’s Hospital (Branch Moody, Jacob Mayfield), Cornell (Kyu Rhee), Rockefeller (Jeremy Rock), University of Cape Town (Val Mizrahi, Digby Warner, Robin Wood) and University of Groningen (Aadrian Minnaard) . It was a great meeting to plan upcoming Myco3V projects and connect with new cross-TBRU collaborations. 
  • Oyinda also travelled to Breckenridge in Colorado and caught up with the latest in TB research at the Keystone Symposia on Tuberculosis in August. 
  • Kaley had a “summer of macrophages” where she got the ex vivo macrophage pipeline up and going in the lab and mentored undergraduate researchers on Mycobacterial and macrophage infections.
  • Rachel wrapped up a manuscript and headed to San Francisco to undertake an internship as a Summer Associate at Analysis Group’s Health Economics and Outcomes Research practice. 
  • Josh Tolliver came onboard as a new research technician. Josh completed his undergraduate degree at UNC Chapel Hill, where he also worked in the lab of Dr. Alan Jones and worked on projects including bacterial genetics and plant pathogenesis. Josh has quickly picked up new mammalian genetics skills in the lab and is going through the BSL3 bootcamp for work at high containment.
  • Paloma Garcia is a Duke undergrad that worked in the lab this summer as part of the MGM SURE fellowship. She worked under the mentorship of Dr. Kaley Wilburn to tackle questions of Mycobacterial growth in specific host genetic backgrounds. Here, Paloma learnt Mammalian cell tissue culture and bacterial aseptic techniques. Paloma also presented her project at the annual MGM retreat where she won a poster prize. Fantastic work!

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