Meet our Early Career Scientist Grant Winner Teresa Sierra Arregui
Teresa is a third year PhD Student at the University of the Basque Country in Spain. The grant will be used to support Teresa’s online participation in the 49th Meeting of the European Brain and Behaviour Society (EBBS) congress, which will take place from 4th to 7th September 2021.
I am very happy and grateful to have received the Early Career Scientist Grant from Hello Bio! With this grant, I will have the opportunity to present the first results of my research at the 49th Meeting of the European Brain and Behaviour (EBBS) congress. This will allow me to meet many neuroscience experts and other students focused on the behaviour field, which will be great for my future career. Teresa Sierra Arregui, University of the Basque Country, Spain, Hello Bio Early Career Scientist Grant winner
Congratulations Teresa! First, can you tell us a bit more about what you're working on at the moment?
My current research focuses on the investigation into how the dysfunction of specific neurons contributes to some neuropsychiatric diseases, such as Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD), both at functional and molecular level. For this purpose, in our laboratory we work with a mouse model of autism with a mutation in the Cntnap2, a gen associated to this disorder. The results obtained from this project could help guide therapeutics by distinguishing primary causes from secondary effects.
What is it about your field of research that gets you most excited?
I feel very excited about how complex our brain can be and how, with each discovery we make, we are closer to understanding the main cause of several disorders such as autism, in order to find the best treatments.
Which scientists working today do you most admire, and why?
As a young female scientist, I admire a lot of women in STEM that have developed their own careers. But if I had to choose one, I would say Jacqueline N. Crawley, an expert who has contributed a lot in the rodent behaviour field.
What do you think are the biggest challenges currently facing life scientists and their work?Without doubt, the main handicap during the last year has been the difficulties of working during the pandemic, not only in the day-to-day work, but also in the attendance of practical courses and congresses. Personally, I think that scientific formation is very important during PhD studies and this year our opportunities to personally interact with scientific peers and to learn new techniques have been significantly affected.
What’s your favourite science quote?
“What is a scientist after all? It is a curious man looking through a keyhole, the keyhole of nature, trying to know what's going on.” - Jacques Yves Cousteau
Thank you so much Teresa! We wish you all the best with your presentation in September!
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