In June and July 2019, Amanda Weiss, a graduate student in Molecular & Integrative Physiology, traveled to the University of Birmingham in the United Kingdom to study neuron extensions with Dr. Liam Grover, School of Chemical Engineering. Weiss helped Grover test a type of fluidic gel their lab has developed for reducing scarring in damaged corneas. The research tested how well neurons could grow in it.
This five-week experience both fostered cross-disciplinary training — in Weiss’ case, engineering. And, it enabled progress toward the MBM Program’s initiative to introduce trainees to research experiences through travel to our partner institutions.
The experience also gave Weiss the opportunity to enjoy some sightseeing on weekends. In her own words:
I’m really glad that I did research abroad at the University of Birmingham, UK. It was a fun experience where I got to work on a project that I was really excited about, while making new friends and seeing Europe for the first time. I learned new techniques and gained more exposure to engineering. It was also educational for me to experience lab environments in the UK.
More of our trainees are developing plans for similar research experiences beginning later this fall and more going next year.