Emma's scientific work in one sentence
We are interested in how parental dietary changes can lead to epigenetic modifications that cause intergenerational effects.
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Highest Level of education: M.Sc., 2017, University of Heidelberg
Actual Position: Doctoral researcher in Dan Ehninger’s group "Molecular and Cellular Cognition", DZNE Bonn
What is - in your opinion - your best publication?
There is only one so far, but I’m proud of it!
Mayer, C., Bruehl, C., Salt, E. L., Diem, R., Draguhn, A., & Fairless, R. (2018). Selective Vulnerability of alphaOFF Retinal Ganglion Cells during Onset of Autoimmune Optic Neuritis. Neuroscience, 393, 258-272. doi:10.1016/j.neuroscience.2018.07.040
5 questions about research - past, present, future
1. What are your primary tasks and responsibilities in your actual position?
Since I am a doctoral researcher, my main tasks are conducting research and learning along the way. This means reading publications, planning experiments, getting advice from my supervisor and the experienced postdocs in our research group, carrying out experiments and learning from mistakes.
2. What is it that gives you pleasure and/or satisfaction the most?
It is great when a gut feeling, random thought or crazy idea results in a successful plan – both in a scientific and non-scientific context.
3. Which research question(s) affects you at the moment? What is its social significance?
Human cohort studies indicate that changes to both maternal and paternal physiological or environmental conditions can increase the risk of diseases – such as cancers and metabolic disorders – in the next generation. Despite the increasing amount of evidence, the question how our experiences, food intake or lifestyle choices can affect our descendants still needs to be fully elucidated. With our rising awareness of potential risk factors for diseases, the significance of fully understanding the mechanisms behind intergenerational effects is growing.
4. Which publication influenced you the most?
Choosing one publication from a content perspective is very difficult, as there are countless interesting and well-written papers. However, the ones that have influenced me the most are the not-well-written ones that while scientifically relevant are challenging to read. These papers drive me to be a better writer and a better science communicator.
5. What do you like most about AMPro?
AMPro’s interdisciplinary approach to the topic of aging and metabolic programming is very exciting. The collaboration of multiple research institutes and lab groups allows diverse skills, knowledge and technical expertise to be exchanged between scientists that are specialised in different research areas.
5 questions beyond research
1. What are your experiences with reconciliation of family or private and working life?
Since I am still at the very beginning of my career, I do not have much experience to share concerning this question. Though many long nights and weekends have been spent in the lab over the course of my studies, balancing it with a private life has not been a big issue for me yet. However, seeing scientists balancing family and work life both successfully and unsuccessfully makes me think about the future and the decisions I will have to make one day.
2. What is the experience during your PhD you will remember all your life?
I am still making those PhD memories, so maybe in a few years I can answer this question properly. But for sure, the amazing support both professionally and personally from my lab members and also other colleagues within our institute and graduate school is something that will stick with me for the rest of my life.
3. Which book and/or movie has lately affected you the most?
I have started reading Simon Beckett’s book “Chemistry of Death”, which was given to me by a friend many years ago and I have finally dusted off my copy. This book not only satisfies my fascination for crime and forensics, but also scared me to the point that I am now afraid of the dark.
4. What are your hobbies?
My hobbies are nature photography, reading and listening anything related to true crime and trying out new baking recipes.
5. What is your favourite colour, season and/or football (or other sports) club?
Grey (it is a colour, don’t fight me on it), autumn (finally rain again after a long, hot summer). And as for sport, I don’t follow any sport in particular, but my brother bribes me to say Manchester United is the best football club.