One of the most impressive things about San Diego State University is the involvement of the PI’s (principal investigators) in fostering young scientists. SDSU Research features an impressive number of undergraduates who complete an Honors Thesis during their time at SDSU.
Hopefully our own undergrads will get there one day (for a brand new lab, we’re sure growing quickly!) but for now, we had the opportunity to attend Holly Norman’s Undergraduate Honors Thesis Defense last week.
Holly comes from Dr. Rob Edwards’ lab , a close colleague of ours who has done really cool work with (you guessed it!) phages using bioinformatics.
Holly’s project was to study crAssphage using human… 💩 samples collected from San Diego residents.
In 2014, Rob and collaborators had previously identified crAssphage as a highly abundant phage present in the majority of published human fecal metagenomes. (Paper)
Holly’s work looked at temporal and geographic effects on the presence of crAssphage and contributed to ongoing efforts towards isolating crAssphage in vitro.
It was also really inspiring to hear about Holly’s organization Women in Science and her plans for the organization and herself after graduating.
All in all, it was really awesome to hear about Holly’s work and hopefully she’ll serve as inspiration for members of the SDSU community including (COUGH) our own undergraduates. 😉
Best of luck in your future endeavors!