Saturday, June 17, 2017

Florianopolis, Brazil update!

Olá, Oi, Hello! Wow, the beginning to my summer has been amazing! I am currently in Florianopolis, Brazil, it is such a beautiful city on the island of Santa Catarina. Despite it being fall/winter-time here, I’ve been able to get out and explore and enjoy the nearby attractions: such as the gorgeous beach, Joaquina! The first two weeks I was sort-of bummed because it rained like everyday, but as time progressed (week 3&4) it has been nice & sun shiney! So on to research stuff: my lab mentor, Dr. Elizabeth Linder is so awesome! She has openly welcomed me to her lab and has encouraged intellectual freedom with my research! She prefers to go by Elizabeth (how cool, lol). Apart of Elizabeth’s lab, I am working in the department of pharmacology, as she is a pharmacist and professor at UFSC (Universidade Federal de Santa Catarina). Her research focuses on antidepressant drugs/medications and their effects on the body, specifically the cardiovascular and reproductive systems. This is such an interesting topic, as I am a believe in the importance of self-care and mental health. With this research, we are using rats as our test subjects (scary, right!?). I am currently conquering my fear of working with rats, so closely. I previously did research in a rat lab, but it was in vitro. I have successfully changed a couple rat cages and picked up some of the rats, as well as placed a blood pressure cuff on one of the rats. Elizabeth is taking her time training me on our experimental procedure because I will be conducting the experiment by myself, although she will pop in to assist. I look forward to a long day of taking rat blood pressures, as we are observing the effect a particular drug has on their pressure levels. It has almost been one month since i’ve been in Brazil! Time goes by fast when you’re out enjoying life right!? Check out my upcoming post to see what else is up! Tchau!

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