Thursday, 29 November 2012

International Visitors

A clear sign that summer in Sydney is almost upon us, we are hosting a number of international visitors to the Paulsen lab at the moment. We have Peter Henderson and Scott Jackson visiting from the University of Leeds for 5-6 weeks, collaborating on biophysical analyses of multidrug transport proteins that our group are working on. These are proteins that sit in the membranes of bacterial cells and pump drugs out of the cell to make the bacteria resistant to antibiotics and antiseptics. Peter is a  world-leading expert in biochemical analysis of membrane transporters, so it's great having him visit. Anne-Brit Kolsto and Aniko Voros from the University of Oslo are also visiting our lab for 1-2 months collaborating on a project to look at multidrug transport proteins in Bacillus cereus, a pathogen that causes food poisoning (and is the reason why you shouldn't eat cooked rice that has sat at room temperature for too long). Anne-Brit is one of the world's leading researchers on this bacterium, and continues our tradition of having Norwegian collaborators visit here in Sydney. We also have Rebecca Watts visiting from the Queensland Institute of Medical Research (ok, so technically, Queensland isn't really another country). Rebecca is working on a project looking at whether strains of Pseudomonas aeruginosa that infect cystic fibrosis patients are functionally different from strains isolated from the environment and other sources.

And its clearly a lovely time to visit Sydney, and admire how our beaches are currently red during the day and glowing blue at night thanks to a dinoflagellate bloom.

red tide in the morning, swimmers warning (photo courtesy of the Sydney Morning Herald)

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