Dr Lauren Carruthers
- Research Assistant (Parasitology)
I graduated with a BSc (Hons) in Parasitology before undertaking two short-term research technician positions on diminazene resistance in Trypanosoma congolense parasites and the role of lipids in trypanosome cytokinesis. I then undertook a PhD exploring interactions between Schistosoma mansoni infection, gut bacteria and anti-helminthic treatment. I compared the bacterial composition of stool from individuals from a rural Ugandan community, with high and low schistosome infection intensities and explored how these bacterial structures change post-treatment with combined praziquantel and albendazole treatment. During my PhD, I also received funding to undertake an internship at the Texas Biomedical Research Centre, where I learnt about schistosome maintenance in the lab and explored the microbiota of Biomphalaria snails. I am currently characterising the role of a new family of zinc finger proteins in Plasmodium parasites in the laboratory of Dr Katarzyna Modrzynska.
I am passionate about public engagement and have volunteered at a variety of events, created activites, and written blogs. I have created a booklet of science cross stitch patterns and run the 'Parasites in Stitches,' (@ParasiteXStitch) twitter and instagram accounts. I was awarded the International Society for Neglected Tropical Diseases Art award in 2019 and an MVLS engagement grant to develop activities in February 2023.
My current research focuses on characterising the role of a new family of zinc finger proteins in Plasmodium parasites in the laboratory of Dr Katarzyna Modrzynska. I have also received an ECR Futurescope grant from the Wellcome Centre for Integrative Parasitology to explore the RNA interactome in the Plasmodium berghei ookinete.
I have supervised the following Masters projects in the laboratory of Dr Katarzyna Modrzynska:
- Exploring expression of a Plasmodium berghei 3xCCCH Zinc Finger Protein throughout the parasite life cycle (May - August 2022).
- Expression analysis of an RNA-binding protein through the malaria parasite life cycle (May - August 2022).