The Science Hour with Nadia Rosenthal, PhD: A Warm Up

Known as: A Molecular Biologist, and Scientific Director of the Jackson Laboratory

Based out of: Bar Harbor, Maine

What she does in 10 words or less: Studies genetic variation in mice to better understand human disease

Why what she does is important to you: Dr. Rosenthal uses naturally occurring variation in the genetic code of different strains of mice to study the biology of aging and regenerative medicine. By using mice as models for the differences between individual people, Dr. Rosenthal and her team are able to investigate, for example, how our immune system can be influenced to improve tissue repair, including in the heart. The use of genetic engineering and targeted mutagenesis gives researchers like Nadia the ability to find methods for treatment of degenerative conditions that are usually considered incurable.

What you’ll learn from the talk: How the team at Jackson Laboratory, led by Dr. Rosenthal, is using genetically diverse mice to study susceptibility to SARS-Cov-2 and how mice can help us develop a new understanding of why COVID-19 affects people so differently.

Key Terms:

Genetically engineered – the artificial manipulation of genetic material (DNA) to modify an organism

Degenerative disease – A disease in which the function or structure of the affected tissues or organs changes for the worse over time. For example, osteoporosis, and Alzheimer disease.

Regenerative medicine – Replacing tissue or organs that have been damaged by disease, trauma, or congenital issues with healthy tissue.

Targeted mutagenesis – Deliberate change in the genetic structure directed at a specific site on the chromosome

Fun fact: Nadia is a trained artist, and designs cover art for the scientific journals she edits as well as the books she’s authored.

This event is for you if: You’re curious how genomics has played a role in the study of COVID-19, and how mice give scientists an incredible opportunity to research human disease.

When: Thursday, May 13th at 7:30pm on Zoom.  Register here.