Meet Our 2019 Fellow: Aurora Álvarez
We want to showcase the experience of our 2019 Fellow, Dr Aurora Álvarez. She is a Venezuelan bioanalyst with an MSc in Toxicology. She reminisces about her time in Mexico, she states she chose this country since it leads statistics in terms of scientific contributions in Latin America. Her work was focused on developing techniques for the preparation of recombinant proteins and their interaction with the cell membranes from scorpion venom neurotoxins. Her fellowship title was “Develop techniques for the preparation of recombinant proteins and their interaction with the cell membranes from scorpion venom neurotoxins”
Her work specifically used techniques such as molecular biology, where different olinos were designed from amino-terminal sequences and amplify DNA fragments through PCR.
Thanks to the fellowship, she shares how they were able to find a match of the DNA fragments, coinciding with the gene of interest within the study. Her team selected it to clone and obtain multiple copies, and produce AK4 protein to then purify it with a hydrophysical technique called Pashclam, which allows the behaviour analysis of compounds.
Her research concluded in the further study of minioro toxins that in the future, could be used as a pharmacological tool.
Dr Álvarez expressed her gratitude towards her team, staff, researchers and her mentor, Dr Holson— adding that Mexico is a colourful country with lovely people and rich culture.
Watch the complete Dr Aurora Álvarez’s testimonial video
We invite you to stay tuned to our next enrolling period for UNU-BIOLAC Fellowships.
The UNU-BIOLAC fellowship programme focuses on overcoming limitations in the LAC region by improving abilities, skills, and techniques and promoting learning through the experiences of regional experts.
The programme consists of short fellowships to build strong research networks with training outputs that include research reports, policy recommendations, manuals, handbooks, protocols, and other reference materials. It is crucial for the programme that the knowledge acquired by fellows will benefit their institutions and country capacities.