Friday, 7 December 2012

Transporter Workshop

My first scientific passion was studying membrane transport- how cells use specific transporter proteins to bring in nutrients and pump out toxins and waste products. I spent my PhD studying how the pathogen Golden Staph (Staphylococcus aureus) has become resistant to antibiotics and antiseptics by employing multidrug efflux pumps that pumps these compounds out of the bacterial cell. Later on as a postdoctoral fellow at the University of California at San Diego I became interested in trying to predict the complete set of transporter proteins in different organisms, to build a complete picture of membrane transport.

Yesterday, I attended a mini-conference or workshop on Membrane Transporters & Channels & Their Role In Human Disease. It was a fun meeting which made me feel all nostalgic for membrane transporters. I gave a talk on recent work of ours on finding an entirely new type of multidrug efflux pump, and Karl Hassan from my group gave a short 3 minute talk on his work on multidrug efflux pumps in the bacterial pathogen Acinetobacter baumannii. One aspect of the meeting that worked really well was a series of short rapidfire 3 minute talks from young researchers. There were also some great talks at the meeting on the structures of various membrane transporter proteins.

This was the first workshop in Australia dedicated to membrane transporters, and I think Richard Callaghan, Megan O'Mara, and Chris McDevitt did a great job organizing the meeting. Hopefully, this can become a regular event. Turning it into a 2 day meeting held once every couple of years I think would be a great outcome.

Not this type of transporter

No comments:

Post a Comment