Talking Techniques

Share

How can we achieve gender equality in STEM?

Season 2, Ep. 3

This International Women’s Day takeover episode, with special guest host BioTechniques’ Senior Digital Editor Abi Sawyer, takes a look at the results of Future Science Group’s (London, UK) survey for the scientific community on gender equality and parity in STEM.


Abi’s guests on this episode are the Vice President of Epidemiology and Clinical Evidence at IQVIA (NC, USA), Dr Christina Mack; the Executive Director for the Pharmaceutical Research Computing Center at the University of Maryland School of Pharmacy (MD, USA), Dr Ebere Onukwugha; a Lecturer, Science Communicator and Author based in Cardiff (UK), Dr Emma Yhnell; and the Director of the Neuroscience Center Microscopy Core at the University of North Carolina–Chapel Hill (NC, USA), Dr Michelle Itano.


They discuss the results of Future Science Group’s survey, share their own experiences of gender inequality as well as situations where they’ve felt supported, and outline how the STEM community can push further towards gender equality and parity.


Contents:


Introduction: 00:00 – 1:47

Gender inequality, experiences and impact on STEM careers: 1:48 – 10:41

Underlying reasons for gender disparity in STEM: 10:42 – 17:51

Promoting gender equality in the STEM work environment: 17:52 – 30:34

Looking forward: representation and mentoring: 30:35 – 39:32

Conclusions: 39:33 – 40:10

More Episodes

8/17/2021

Adeno-associated viral therapies: harnessing the power of HPLC

Season 2, Ep. 13
This episode centers on the critical role that high-performance liquid chromatography (HPLC) plays in the production of adeno-associated viral (AAV) therapies, the latest advances in AAV design and the next steps in their development.Filling me in on all things HPLC and AAVs is Bella Neufeld, Director of R&D at Teknova. Bella reveals the essential validation and quality control steps required for the production of successful and safe AAV therapies and the role that both HPLC and liquid chromatography–mass spectrometry (LCMS) play in these steps. We also explore the latest development targets for these therapies, looking at how AAVs can be targeted to specific sites and tissues before descending into the treacherous topic of reproducibility in the field.Listen today to find out the latest tips for best practice when working with HPLC, LCMS the advantages of LCMS over other analytical techniques to assess empty and full capsids and the key principles of AAV production!ContentsIntro: 00:00-01:25Explaining HPLC and its benefits: 01:25-03:30Developing adeno-associated viruses: 03:30-05:25Chromatography in validation vs production of AAVs: 05:25-06:15Quality control vs hands on time: 06:15-07:35Challenges in AAV production: 07:35-08:55Examining the level of empty and full capsids: 08:55-10:00The role of LCMS in determining and validating AAV contents: 10:00-11:30Tips for best practice when using HPLC: 12:30-13:10The future of HPLC: 13:10-14:20Latest advances in AAV development: 14:20-15:50Targeting AAVs: 15:50-17:20Reproducibility issues in AAV development: 17:20-19:35Outro: 19:35-21:10
8/16/2021

Organoids: advancing drug discovery and cancer research

Season 2, Ep. 12
As the transition from 2D to 3D cell cultures, or organoids, as the gold standard for modeling basic biology and disease continues, these models are being utilized in ever more intricate and impactful ways.This episode covers the rise of organoids and their advantages over 2D cell cultures, before exploring just how representative these models are becoming and their new applications in drug discovery. To find out all this and more, I speak to Oksana Sirenko, Senior Scientist at Molecular Devices, who works extensively with the company's organoid model development programs.Oksana reveals the potential of these models in cancer therapeutics, driven forward by new patient-derived organoids, and notes the challenges presented by imaging these thicker, 3D models. We also explore the potential discoveries that can be unlocked by combining organoids with organ-on-a-chip models.Contents:What are organoids? 02:10-03:20Functions replicated by organoids? 3:20-04:00What are the advantages of 3D over 2D cell cultures? 04:00-05:40Just how representative are these models? 04:40-07:10Intestinal organoid formation 07:10-08:50The most exciting application of organoids 08:50-10:10Organoids in drug development 10:10-11:20Methodology of organoids in drug screening studies 11:20-13:30Examples of organoids in cancer drug discovery: 13:30-16:00Limitations of patient-derived and regular organoid models: 16:00-17:50Body-on-a-chip concepts and examples: 17:50-22:00Challenges posed by organoids for drug discovery: 22:00-24:20Techniques improving organoid models and analysis: 24:20-25:50Imaging organoid models: 25:50-26:55Tips for best practice when working with organoids: 26:55-28:20Organoid method development: 28:20-31:10One thing to improve organoid models or analysis for drug screening: 31:10-33:07To find out more about the research and solutions discussed in this episode visit: www.moleculardevices.com/TechTalk8.
6/25/2021

The ethics of whole-genome sequencing: from race and religion to science fiction

Season 2, Ep. 11
Welcome to part two of this two-part episode on whole-genome sequencing (WGS) in rare disease research and treatment. In part one we discussed the impacts the technology has had on both improving the clinical diagnosis and management of rare diseases and on drug development and basic research studies.This episode goes beyond the technology’s capabilities and into the debates surrounding how, when and why they should be used. What needs to change for the technique to be applied equitably? And how does reality stack up against science fiction in terms of people’s perceptions of ubiquitous WGS?To do this I speak with David Dimmock, Senior Medical Director of the Rady Children’s Institute for Genomic Medicine (CA, USA); Christine Stanley, Chief Director of Clinical Genomics, Variantyx (MA, USA); and Take Ogawa, Vice President of Sales & Marketing at Psomagen (MD, USA). Each of these speakers provides their opinions on the impacts of race, religion and way of life on the application of WGS and how much is too much data.Contents:Introductions: 00:00-02:20Gauging public perceptions of routine WGS 02:20-05:40The role of industry in improving WGS accessibility and capabilities: 05:40-07:35The appropriate use of pre-symptomatic and predictive risk findings: 08:00-11:15Debating the discovery of untreatable diseases: 11:15-12:45The impact of data biases in gene sequencing and the lack of gene references for different populations: 12:45-14:45The impact of religion and lifestyle on ethical considerations in the use of WGS data: 14:45-16:00Dealing with unintended findings or results that impact relatives: 16:00-16:45The value of WGS in pharmacogenomic variant findings and challenging the ACMG59 list: 16:45-19:20Striking the balance between fully utilizing WGS for all potential findings and ensuring maximum participation for all groups: 19:20-22:45Filtering data to avoid exclusion: 22:45-24:10Who owns WGS data? 24:10-25:15Consent conversations: 25:15-26:30Final comments: 26:30-27:15