Showing posts from 2018

Innovations in Multiparametric Flow Cytometry

Of all of the tools available to biomedical scientists, flow cytometry ranks among the most powerful. Its capacity to interrogate tens of thousands of cells per second and to measure multiple parameters simultaneously, coupled with its flexibility, has established this technique as central to the experimental process in many different disciplines. This is all the more true for hematology, whose target cells’ size, shape, and nature to exist as a single-cell suspensions makes flow cytometry indispensable for addressing biological questions we ask.

Flow cytometry in some form has been around since the 1940s, when it was used to detect bacteria in aerosols through illumination by a Ford headlight and detected via a photomultiplier tube (Gucker FT et al., 1947; for historical overview on flow cytometry, see Shapiro H, 2003). Since then, the technique’s development has been immense, limited essentially only by the technological constraints of the time. As lasers became smaller, so did flow…

Things Nobody Told Me about Being a PI - Part 1

You may be able to do 50 mini-preps in an hour, or prepare next-generation sequencing libraries like nobody’s business, but there are several skills that are essential for running a successful lab for which no prior training was provided.
OK, so you have had a productive post-doc, published some nice papers, maybe even secured some independent funding.  Then the almost unthinkable happens, your hard work pays off and you secure at tenure-track faculty position at the research institute of your dreams.  YAY!  This was my situation about 6-years ago.  It was fun, exciting, daunting, challenging, and exhausting all at the same time.  All of you aspiring PIs out there by now have a reasonable idea of what the expectations are as a junior faculty member (beautifully laid out in detail in Simply Blood posts last year from Dr. Eric Pietras;  Pretty simple right – publish good papers, secure independent grant funding, mentor trainees to be useful membe…

Lab Spotlight: Beaudin Laboratory

Simply Blood Lab Spotlight
Each month, Simply Blood spotlights a lab focused on the research of basic hematology, immunology, stem cell research, cell and gene therapy, and other related aspects.  Get to know these different labs around the world! This month, we are featuring the Beaudin Laboratory at the University of California - Mercedin the United States. 

How long have you had your lab?  
I started my lab in September, 2016 - so about a year and half.

How many members make up your lab?  Students/postdocs?
My lab is currently made up of three graduate students, a technician, and 6 undergraduate researchers. I'd love to add a postdoc or two. 

What is the major research theme of your lab?
My lab focuses on developmental hematopoiesis.  We are broadly interested in defining the cellular and molecular mechanisms regulating the establishment of fetal-derived immune cells, as well as understanding how perturbation during development drives immune dysfunction across the lifespan.

What i…

Should Scientists Use Twitter? The Answer is YES!

James Till, one of the preeminent pioneers of the hematopoietic stem cell field, is a staunch proponent of open-access publishing and sharing of science via social media, especially Twitter. When we interviewed him for this article, he stated, “A scientist can join Twitter in
order to share information of common interest to others in the same field. Twitter is a useful source of information about recent contributions to the areas of Open Access and Regenerative Medicine.”

Twitter is the fastest and easiest platform to get news. As scientists, our time is always limited but we also have the need to stay updated on the literature, scientific events and even to give our personal opinion on scientific discoveries or legislation that affect science. Twitter is the perfect tool for this.

We use multiple social media platforms to spread the word about ISEH, including Twitter, which we use to follow our annual meeting and to highlight news and papers from our community, with a special focus to …

Embracing Research Across the Pond

Moving and traveling is an integral part of being a scientist. Whenever you go abroad for a study or work, it means you have to adapt to a new place, language, and culture. While we all speak the language of science and blood research, fitting into a new country and finding your way around can be challenging and confusing. In this blog post, I wanted to reflect on my own experiences working on two sides of the Atlantic Ocean, and to share advice from my 3 colleagues from South Korea, Sweden, and Japan, on succeeding in different research cultures.

The reasons for traveling as a scientist are multiple, and time spent abroad can vary dramatically from a few days to many years. The majority of important conferences rotate their locations all over the world (I am looking forward to the ISEH meeting in LA this year!). Wanting to pursue a particular topic or learning a unique technique often means you have to travel to a new country or even a new continent. Moreover, in some parts of the wor…

With a Little Help From My Friends

Happy 2018! The start of a new year is a time for making resolutions, reflecting on the past and looking forward to new opportunities. We have written many blogs about work-life balance and succeeding in science, and a common theme in many of these blogs is that none of us do it alone. We need friends and family to keep us grounded. At home, our partnerships are vital for maintaining our sanity and supporting our family responsibilities. Collaborations at work often allow us to take our science into new realms and also share both the fun and the burden of getting a project done. Friends in science are also necessary for venting; they can relate to struggles with experiments, publishing, and funding, sometimes offering a helping hand or simply a sympathetic ear. 

The community of ISEH is overflowing with close friends and collaborators. It is an ever-growing group that has the close-knit, inclusive feeling of family. Some friendships were forged at the annual ISEH meeting, while others…