Thanks to those who voted for me! It was good while it lasted. And thanks for all your questions! I had a great time!
Favourite Thing: Doing experiments! The process of my scientific research is made up of 2 main parts: 1) coming up with a question that you want to answer and 2) designing and performing experiments to answer that question. I do enjoy the whole process, but my favourite part is definitely performing experiments.
Presebyterian Ladies College (2000 – 2004)
Monash University 2005 – 2009: Bachelor of Biomedical Science (Honours)
Australian Stem Cell Centre, Monash University
Australian Centre for Blood Diseases, Monash University
I’m a PhD student who has just submitted my thesis, and has returned to the lab to finish some experiments while waiting for feedback from the examiners.
Me and my work
My research is in Multiple Myeloma, a type of blood cancer. I’m trying to find out what makes this disease worse in some patients than in others.
Multiple Myeloma (MM) is an incurable cancer of plasma cells (mature B cells) that occurs mainly in the bone marrow.
Plasma cells don’t usually express a surface marker called CD45, however, about a decade ago, people started seeing groups of cells that do have this marker.
Over the last few years, researchers (together with doctors) have noticed that patients who don’t express the CD45 marker have more aggressive symptoms, and shorter survival compared with patients that have the CD45 protein. My project is to try and figure out what is different between the cells that express CD45 and those that don’t, and why the differences in the cells might lead to differences in patients in the clinic.
My Typical Day
My days usually consist of doing experiments in the lab, analysing results, writing up my research and reading papers about other people’s research. Experiments are always at the top of the list, so how much time I spend on the other tasks depends on the experiments I have planned.
A ‘typical’ day in the life of a scientist
8.30am: Get into work, grab coffee, check emails
9am: Experiments in the lab
Analyse results and write up what I’ve been doing
Read research papers
1pm: More experiments/data analysis/reading
4pm: Finish off experiments/data analysis/reading
6pm: Time to go home!
This is just a snapshot of what a typical day might be like. Experiments sometimes might take longer than the allocated times, or we will have meetings on, or occasionally the lab will receive samples from patients which need to be processed immediately, so my day can sometimes be a little unpredictable.
What I'd do with the money
Donate it to outreach programs that will take science to more kids around the country.
How would you describe yourself in 3 words?
Friendly, adaptable, easy-going
Who is your favourite singer or band?
I like all kinds of music and don’t really have just ONE favourite singer/band. Right now I’m really into Pink and Adele.
What is the most fun thing you've done?
White water rafting the Shotover river in Queenstown, New Zealand
If you had 3 wishes for yourself what would they be? - be honest!
1) For all my experiments to work. 2) To go behind the scenes on a big film/television production. 3) To own a horse so I can go horseriding whenever I want.
What did you want to be after you left school?
I didn’t really know. All I knew was that I wanted a job with variety, where everyday would be different.
Were you ever in trouble in at school?
No, I have to confess that I was a bit of teacher’s pet
What's the best thing you've done as a scientist?
I gave a presentation at the main session of a conference, which was really scary, but felt really awesome afterwards. I even won the award for best young scientific investigator at the meeting.
Tell us a joke.
Q: Why did the biologist and physicist break up? A: Because there was no chemistry. Here’s another one: How do you organise a party in space? You planet.
Tennis, Rugby Union
Roger Federer is my favourite tennis player, and Wallabies all the way!