Since the 23rd January I’ve been working at the University of Aberdeen in the lab of Prof Alistair Brown. This is part of a Research Visit Grant from the British Microbiology Society to perform some experiments and test hypotheses arising from my computational work.
Working in the lab is very different from my day to day role, where my analysis is exclusively computational. Now I’m culturing strains, performing phenotypic assays and doing microscopy. Fortunately, I’m being helped by Prof Brown’s supportive, and very patient, research group. At the end of my 4 week stay I hope to have completed a range of experiments to demonstrate new roles for yeast genes in causing human disease. If successful these findings will form the basis of a publication and will likely influence the direction of my future work.
The research visit will provide me with the chance to further my own research, get some experience of working in the lab and to develop collaborations with researchers at the University of Aberdeen. The trip is proving to be a great learning experience. As a computational biologist I’ve found that some of the most interesting work I have been involved in has come out of collaborations between experimentalists and bioinformaticians. I hope that this trip will continue the already strong collaboration between the University of Aberdeen and the University of Exeter.