IDRI summer intern Brandon Paris, left, shares data with his mentor, Jeff Guderian.

IDRI summer intern Brandon Paris, left, shares data with his mentor, Jeff Guderian.

NOTE: Brandon Paris was one of three interns who spent 10 weeks at IDRI in summer 2015, as part of IDRI’s internship program for college undergraduates. He is a biology major at Whitman College.

I have been interested in the human immune system since I was diagnosed with an autoimmune disorder in 2006, but I never imagined where that interest would lead. In my three years at Whitman College, I have explored every corner of the biology major with this interest in the back of my mind. It has been a blessing to be able to bring this interest to IDRI, mesh into the framework here, and work towards IDRI’s global mission.

During my time at IDRI,  I have worked with the adjuvant development team on a study that aims to better understand how IDRI’s adjuvant formulations provoke inflammatory responses, ex vivo, following incubation at different temperatures. I was given the opportunity to see one particular study through, start to finish, with many cytokine assays along the way. To grow and develop these lab skills with this project has been an invaluable learning experience.

I am extremely grateful for all the help the adjuvant team has given me throughout this project, and especially my mentor, Jeff Guderian, for his oversight. Although his “sink or swim” method of teaching was daunting at first, in the end it facilitated my learning and provided a great introduction to laboratory research.

While I don’t yet know where I want my career to lead, I am grateful for the opportunities I’ve had at IDRI, to learn more about global health, as well as how research and development can improve health outcomes around the world.

[author] [author_image timthumb=’off’][/author_image] [author_info]Posted by Brandon Paris, IDRI Intern
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