A summer of opportunities

This summer was amazing! I can’t even begin to describe how beneficial this summer fellowship was to my future career as a scientist. I learned so many new protocols that I can add to my list, as well as just how a lab works in general. I always thought labs had an impersonal and competitive environment, but this summer I got to see just how collaborative everyone was within and between labs.

I also got to do some amazing things that I would’ve never had the opportunity to do otherwise. I got to take a project that was on the cutting edge of lupus research, and follow it through the steps of getting verified, getting tested, and getting results. However, as most research does, this project did not get finished at the same time the summer ended. Which is why I’ve decided to stay at this lab with Dr. Emily Gillespie doing Directed Research with the same project I had the pleasure to work with during the summer. This opportunity has sparked my interest and I couldn’t just let it go. I plan to see the project through and see where those results take me.

I’ve already seen results that have shown great promise to developing this new and accurate testing for VEGF165b and it would be amazing to see them actually yield results that could help look at cardiovascular disease risks in patients with SLE. I had an amazing time here and learned so much that will help me in my future, and it is all thanks to the Lupus Foundation of Minnesota!






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About the Author:

2012 Student Summer Fellow Brianna Lauer is from Lakeville and will be a junior at the University of Minnesota this fall. Brianna is currently earning her major in Biology and working on a minor in neuroscience, in the hopes of a career in clinical research. Brianna is completing her fellowship in the lab of Dr. Emily Gillespie whose work is focused on studying patterns of gene and protein expression to identify pathways that are dysregulated in autoimmunity. Through this study, they hope to look for signals that can predict the future development of autoimmune disease in patients who test positive for antinuclear antibody (ANA).
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