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Spotlight On...

 

Kathryn Neville

Graduate Student, The Bergstralh Lab

UR photo

You work in a laboratory.  What are you currently researching?

I am currently working in the Bergstralh lab studying spindle orientation. When cells divide, there’s a group of proteins that guide the mitotic spindle into the correct position. I study those proteins. They are super interesting because the proteins seem to work slightly differently in a variety of tissues depending partly on how the tissue needs to be built and maintained. I use fruit flies as a model system. Specifically, I use their ovaries and embryos to study spindle orientation. 

What was it that originally sparked your interest in biology? 

I have always been interested in genetics and the way traits are passed through generations. I studied biology during my undergraduate degree and I took classes that complimented my interest in genetics. I have always admired my teachers, and I am excited to TA and mentor undergrads throughout my PhD. 

What advice would you give to prospective students looking to study in our department?

Be yourself! This department is remarkably diverse and welcoming; there’s a spot for everyone here.

What’s the most important thing that you’ve learned working here and/or studying biology? 

Every day I find myself thankful for the opportunity to work among and learn from such talented people. The most important thing I have learned here so far is the importance of collaboration. Whether it is in the classroom or in my lab, everyone strives to offer their expertise to help you be the best you can be. 

How do you unwind when you’re not in the lab? 

I have a dog that I raised from puppyhood. Spending quality time with her is the perfect way to unwind after a long day in lab. We enjoy hiking in the Rochester area and competing in scent work competitions on the weekends. I also like to bake, do puzzles, and scroll Twitter in my free time.