Budding biological scientist visits Blair lab
As part of the placement Lucinda worked in Professor Eric Blair’s lab. Lucinda said: “Working with the research technicians in the lab was a great experience. The placement has given me an insight into how a laboratory runs and the many processes that take place. One of the most interesting things was learning gel electrophoresis and how this can allow us to see plasmids, or even larger things such as proteins.
“The placement has also given me the opportunity to find out more about how the university is involved in research. I had the chance to learn more about research into diseases such as cancer. I discovered there was far more to learn about the destructive effects of the disease.
“The laboratories at St James' University Hospital are a prime example of the facilities that are linked with the University. The laboratories are funded by Yorkshire Cancer Research, Breast Cancer Research and Cancer Research UK. Those who work at the University of Leeds know how important the research funding provided to the University is. It is amazing how cancer can be studied in such detail to help increase the knowledge of the disease, not only here in Leeds, but worldwide.”
The placement also gave Lucinda the chance to learn basic skills in and around the laboratory, Lucinda said: “The staff have been really helpful and shared their knowledge to give me a better understanding of biological sciences and laboratory techniques that I can use while studying for my A-levels.
“I am hoping to go on to study biological sciences at university or something related to the medical or pharmaceutical industries.”
Professor Eric Blair said: “There are number of ways that schools can learn more about biological sciences at the University of Leeds. We have several open days throughout the year and also have a wide range of opportunities for schools to visit and work in the labs, including the Leeds Festival of Science, featuring the ever-popular Discovery Zone, and the Year 12 Biological Sciences Conference. The Faculty also supports the University's programme of activities for encouraging participation.”
Lucinda is currently studying Biology and Chemistry at A-level.
Professor Blair’s lab looks at research into DNA tumour viruses: Entry into cells and evasion of the immune system.
20th September 2011