Name: Yuying Guo
What’s going on? We’d love to hear how your internship is going!
This summer I am interning in my home city, Boston, in the National Emerging Infectious Diseases Laboratories (NEIDL), which is affiliated with Boston University. I am conducting research in Dr. John Connor’s lab, which studies host responses to viral infections caused by hemorrhagic fever viruses. My project this summer involves working with the MinION, a portable, real-time sequencing device that utilizes the technology of nanopores. I was actually first introduced to the MinION while working in Professor Shapiro’s lab, so I am excited to become more familiar with using this device. I will be establishing the use of the MinION in the Connor lab by using it to sequence viral genomes. A protocol for sequencing inactivated, non-infectious samples of Ebola will be designed.
In addition to working with the MinION, I am also learning cell culture techniques and becoming familiar with different cell morphologies. I have been able to culture three cell lines: HeLa, Vero, and BHK21 (Vero cells are my favorite!). Other techniques that I have learned include performing bacterial transformations, SDS PAGE, Western blots, and RT-PCRs.
While at the NEIDL, I have also participated in the events hosted by the BU STaRS (Summer Training as Research Scholars) Program. I will have the opportunity to present my project at journal clubs and at a research symposium at the end of the summer.
How I hear about my internship:
Through my own online research, I was able to find many labs conducting research that interested me. I reached out to many PIs and was able to secure a research internship position with my current principal investigator, who is a Swarthmore alumnus.
Why I applied for my internship:
I specifically wanted to conduct research this summer because I wanted to explore my possible career choices, and interests within the biology field. I have had previous research experience at Bryn Mawr with Professor Shapiro, so I was also hoping to continue to learn more techniques and skills, as well as gain a feel of the environment in a large lab.