While studying Biology I became interested in the varying ways phenotypes such as developmental processes and disease patterns are influenced at a genomic level.
While working at the Laboratory of Nematology I helped set up a library of recombinant strains to help find these regulators and how they differ between different strains.
The library I helped construct contained recombinant strains called Near-Isogenic Lines (NILs). These strains have contain a single genomic region of one strain (Bristol N2) in the background of a divergent strain (Hawaii CB4856). Any differences in phenotype that these lines express compared to their parental lines can be attributed to this genomic region. Along with a previously constructed complementary NIL library, a variety of genomic interactions can be discovered, and key regulatory elements can be identified. I worked on this project during the 8 months my thesis lasted, and my stay was later extended by 2 months in which I worked at Nematology as a student assistant.
Aside from the thousands of PCRs and hours worm fishing, the most remarkable aspect of working at Nematology was the pleasant atmosphere present in- and outside the laboratory. We laughed, sang, danced and somehow managed to still find time to work. Because of this, I was always happy to go to work here, as every day was enjoyable, or at least interesting. Party on, Nema!