Veronika K. Pettersen, Ph.D
Veronika is currently Assosiate Proffesor at UiT - The Arctic University of Norway, and was visiting Claire’s lab from July 2018 to June 2020. The Research Council of Norway funded her stay at the University of Calgary via the FRIPRO mobility research grant program co-funded by the European Union’s Seventh Framework Program under Marie Curie grant. Veronika studied biochemistry in Czech Republic (University of Chemistry and Technology) and biotechnology in Denmark (Technical University of Denmark) and Norway (Norwegian University of Science and Technology). After her Ph.D. project, Veronika joined the Gade Research Group for Infection and Immunity, University of Bergen, where she specialized in microbial proteomics and genomics. She is currently affiliated with the Pediatric and Host-Microbe Interactions groups at UiT. Her research interests lie in microbial metabolism, host-microbe communication, and consequences of drug-driven alterations of the gut microbiota. In the Arrieta lab, she was involved in studies of the effects that gut fungal species have on immune function in a murine model of asthma. Her main role in this project was to functionally characterize the microbe‐host interactions by proteomic and metabolomic approaches.
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Time in the Arrieta lab: July/2018 - June/2020
Dr. Laforest-Lapointe was the first postdoctoral fellow to join the Arrieta lab. She has now left the lab to start a new position as a Assistant Professor at Université de Sherbrooke, in Quebec. Isabelle is specialized in microbial ecology, community ecology, bioinformatics, and biostatistics. She was awarded the Alberta Children's Hospital Research Institute Postdoctoral Fellowship Excellence Award as well as the Cumming School of Medicine Postdoctoral Scholarship in 2017 and 2018. She holds a Ph.D. in Biology (2012-2017) from the Université of Québec à Montréal (UQAM) for which she obtained a mention of excellence as well as the award for best student research in 2016 at UQAM. She also holds a Master in Ecology and Diversity Management (2010-2011) from the Universitat Autonoma de Barcelona and completed all the class training of a Master in Statistics from the Polytecnica de Catalunya (2011-2012). Her interests range from host-microbe interactions to statistics, from plant to microbial ecology, from functional ecology to community dynamics, and coding. She is also a Software Carpentry and Data Carpentry instructor since 2014.
"My professional and personal journey in the Arrieta lab were outstanding. As soon as I arrived I felt welcomed and well-integrated in all projects as well as with the team. My abilities as a postdoctoral fellow were brought forward, showcased, and appreciated. I was given many opportunities to improve my skills in local and international workshops. In addition, Dr. Arrieta gave me many travel occasions to showcase our work at conferences. Finally, the team is always involved in the integration of new members, thus ensuring a very successful and enjoyable work environment.”
Time in the Arrieta lab: May/2017 - February/2019
Kaiden is a Health Sciences student majoring in Biomedical Sciences. He is interested in the dynamics between the gut microbiota and various diseases. Kaiden joined the group while still in his Senior year at St. Francis high school, volunteering at the Arrieta lab to build his knowledge regarding scientific processes and microbiology in general.
"Surrounding myself with such a positive learning environment has been beneficial for my growth as an undergraduate student. I was able to learn a number of new processes and ways of thinking due to the support all of the lab members provided. There was a great deal of independence given to me and a level of trust I did not expect a lab to provide to an undergrad student. This helped me flourish and learn from my errors. All of the lab members were very supportive and I felt comfortable in the lab due to the positivity everyone showed up with as well as the synergistic nature of the team. I appreciate the opportunity I’ve had to do research with the Arrieta lab as I have benefited a great deal from my time there."
Time in the Arrieta lab: July/2018 - April/2019
While working in the Arrieta lab, Joseph was a Senior at St. Francis high school. His interests in microbiology and immunology led him to volunteer at the Arrieta Lab to obtain a greater understanding of the fields. He has now moved to Ireland, joining the Medicine program at the Royal College of Surgeons in Ireland (RCSI).
"My time at the Arrieta Lab was a remarkable experience in which I had the chance to improve my knowledge upon a wide array of skills including microbiology and immunology techniques, as well as experimental design. Starting in the lab as a high school student, I had limited research experience but I never felt as though that hindered me because of the level of training I received. The lab atmosphere was welcoming, which helped contribute to a productive working environment. The experience I gained during my time in the Arrieta Lab was invaluable, and I am appreciative that I had the opportunity to work with such a fantastic group of people!"
Time in the Arrieta lab: September/2017 - August/2018
Dr. Miriam Enriqueta Nieves Ramirez, Ph.D
Miriam is a researcher at the Universidad Nacional Autonoma de Mexico (UNAM). She visited Dr. Arrieta's lab to continue her work on various projects including her study of the interaction between bacteria and eukaryotes (16S and 18S) and the development of cervical cancer. She did her Ph.D. on the polymorphisms of HLA genes and their role as biomarkers of cervical cancer. She also worked on the protein Entamoeba hystolitica calreticulin (EhCRT) and its influence on the amoebic liver abscess (ALA) and the complement pathway. She is working now on an ex-vivo model of the human liver infection by Entamoeba hystolitica looking at the genes of the pathology and cytokines' production as the immune response in the hepatocyte to understand better the development of the ALA. She is also working on the infection by the protozoan Blastocystis sp. and its influence on the human gut microbiome. Blastocystis sp. is one of the most common human gut colonizer.
"It was an honor for me to share a short research stay in the laboratory of Dr. Marie Claire Arrieta. With her research group, in addition to facilitating my experiments and orienting me at all times, their own experiences were very pleasant to listen to in the time we shared together. You immediately feel a very warm and jovial atmosphere in the laboratory, they make you feel like part of the group. I can only recommend that if you have the opportunity to visit Dr. Arrieta's laboratory, in addition to learning a lot, you will feel as if you were in your own laboratory. Thank you very much to each and every one of its members."
Time in the Arrieta lab: March - May/2018
Shen Yen Tsou
Shen Yen is an undergraduate student of Biomedical Science in the BHSc program at the University of Calgary. She completed her honors thesis in the Arrieta lab as a result of her rekindled interest in microbiology and longtime curiosity with atopic disease.
"While I was a part of the Arrieta Lab I truly felt like I was on the frontier of research in the microbiome and asthma. The cooperation between lab members allowed me to get experience in multiple different kinds of projects, and I gained lots of experience in lab techniques in immunology and microbiology. Training was thorough and there was always someone willing to answer my questions. Everyone in lab was respectful and appreciative of each other. The cohesive group really made me feel like a part of a team. I know I will be taking everything I've learned with me into my future studies."
Time in the Arrieta lab: September/2017 - April/2018
While finishing her second year of her Bachelor of Medical Sciences degree at Western University, Haley did a summer internship in the lab. Her interests are pathology, immunology, and physiology.
"In the Arrieta lab, I gained experience with microbiology and immunology lab techniques, working with animals, and data analysis. My summer project studied the effect of an intestinal fungal overgrowth on asthma pathogenesis and fungal growth regulation by short-chain fatty acids. I’m confident that the hands-on experience I gained in the lab will strengthen my future academic work as I go into my 3rd year of a Bachelor’s in Pathology. I am very grateful to have been a part of the Arrieta team and I will miss everyone very much!"
Time in the Arrieta lab: May - August/2017