Hear what our current and past students have to say about their experience studying at CCR.

Alexander Wailan | PhD Candidate | Australia

Alex

PhD Topic: The Genetic Analysis of NDM harbouring plasmids in Gram-negative bacteria and an insight into their mechanism of acquisition and spread

What was your main motivation to study your RHD topic?

During my honours year we investigated resistance to the last-line antibiotics (carbapenem) and its ability to spread amongst different bacteria. I wanted to continue this investigation in order to characterise the mechanisms involved in this spread of antimicrobial resistance and develop an approach to investigate the spread of the genes responsible for such antimicrobial resistance.

Why did you choose CCR to complete your RHD?

My RHD topic and investigation requires clinical strains. CCR contains a Reference laboratory which has a storage of carbapenem resistant bacteria nation-wide. 

What do you enjoy most about studying at CCR?

The collaboration with other researchers within CCR, the University of Queensland and providing the platform to also interact and collaborate with other national and international Universities and Institutes.

What do you hope to be doing in 10 years’ time?

For now a post-doctoral position in Europe or the UK explaining the mechanisms involved with the spread of antibiotic resistance within these regions while collaborating with Australian Universities to further understand the problem of antimicrobial resistance. Eventually, I plan to return to Australia and assist in Antimicrobial Resistance with the knowledge and technical expertise I have gained from all my previous positions.

Luisa Gomez | PhD Candidate | Colombia

Luisa

PhD Topic: The gut microbiome in overweight and obese pregnancy

What was your main motivation to study your RHD topic?

Evidence suggests that the gut microbiome (the composite of all bacteria present in the distal intestines) could be the driving force in obesity, type II diabetes and other chronic conditions. The gut microbiome in pregnancy might be related to illness in pregnant women such as gestational diabetes mellitus and her fetus. As a microbiologist I find fascinating the fact that our gut bacteria could influence our metabolism in health and disease but could also be vital for the healthy start of babies and their lifelong health. 

Why did you choose CCR to complete your RHD?

I chose my PhD project for the topic itself, but arriving to the CCR and working under “Mothers, babies and lifelong health” was an excellent choice for my career path.

What do you enjoy most about studying at CCR?

UQ is one of the top class research universities in the world; therefore belonging to UQ is an honour and a great opportunity to improve my career prospects. CCR has offered me world-class infrastructure facilitating and making my research studies more enjoyable.

What do you hope to be doing in 10 years’ time?

In 10 years’ time I will be still working on the translational microbiome research, combining academia and industry in order to find new nutraceutical-gut microbiome interactions in human disease.

Mridula Arun | Honours Candidate | Australia

Mridula ArunHonours Topic: Neuroanatomical connectivity between the Forebrain and Mesencephalon 

What was your main motivation to study your RHD topic?

I inculcated a fascination towards neuroscience during my Bachelor’s degree but never had the opportunity to experience it first-hand. So I was very keen to experience neuroscientific research at its finest and wanted to gain hands-on experience in the rapidly emerging field of Deep Brain Stimulation (DBS). Acquiring skills in this niche yet elite field will tremendously benefit me at this preliminary stage of my career.

Why did you choose CCR to complete your RHD?

The Asia-Pacific Centre for Neuromodulation (APCN) is an attractive division of CCR. I was very excited to be a part of the neuromodulation neuroscience state-of-the-art laboratory that is not only involved in unravelling the fundamental neurophysiology of the brain, but has direct clinical translation opportunities using DBS neuromodulation for neurogenic disorders.

What did you enjoy most about studying at UQ/CCR?

Research at CCR is rapidly emerging and very forward thinking. I have really enjoyed this opportunity to study at an innovative centre with an excellent laboratory facility, tremendous support from the staff and access to a generous workspace. 

What do you hope to be doing in 10 years’ time?

In 10 years' time, I hope to be highly accomplished in the academic and clinical field of systems neurophysiology and translational neuroscience. I look forward to holding opportunistic research positions at elite neuroscience research centres around the world and perhaps lead my own field of interest!