Tell us a bit about yourself. Where are you from?
I was born in India but completed my high school and undergraduate studies in San Antonio, Texas where I obtained a BSc focused in Biology with a minor in Physics. I then began my graduate work in the lab of Dr. Diane Lagace in 2010 examining the role of apoptosis in newly generated adult neurons.
What compelled you to pursue stroke research?
I became fascinated with the nervous system when I obtained the opportunity to perform research as an undergrad studying regeneration in a basic worm model system. This fueled my drive to pursue graduate work in regenerative medicine and its potential applications in the clinical setting. I discovered that Dr. Lagace’s lab was researching adult neural stem cells which peaked my interest and solidified my decision to pursue graduate work dissecting the role of adult neural stem cells in stroke recovery.
What is the focus of your research?
My PhD project is investigating whether increasing the survival of endogenous neural stem/progenitor population in the adult brain is sufficient to improve recovery after a stroke. It is essential to answer this question to determine if targeting this population of cells will provide a viable resource in recovery after a stroke.
How do you and others benefit from being part of the National Trainee Association?
The CPSR-NTA is an amazing program that allows for interaction between colleagues within your field of study. Besides providing support and mentorship, the CSPR-NTA brings together basic and clinical scientists. I have greatly profited not only from the funding opportunities available to the trainees but also through networking with fellow stroke researchers.
What other interests do you have?
When I am not in the lab, I enjoy going to the movies or being immersed in a good book. I also spend time volunteering, whether it’s through the local student council or expanding science knowledge through the Let’s Talk Science organization.