Cangul Seran completed her Nuffield Research Placement in 2011 at the National Institute for Medical Research. She is currently doing a Masters degree in Infection and Immunity at University College London.
What was your project about?
I did an investigation into whether perinuclear Weibel Palade bodies secrete. I treated endothelial cells with drugs to locate organelles called Weibel Palade bodies and examine whether they secrete depending on location.
What was the highlight/best bit of your placement?
Using techniques such as immunofluorescent staining, treating human umbilical vein endothelial cells (HUVEC) cells with nocodazole, ELISA, tissue culture and live cell imaging was most certainly the best part! I had the chance to familiarise myself with all these techniques which most people starting university had not experienced.
What path did you take after finishing your NRP and how has that led you to where you are today?
I decided to study Biomedical Science BSc at university. After completing my Bachelors and I knew I wanted to study infection and immunity in greater depth. I developed an interest in both disease-causing microorganisms and how the human body reacts and adapts to them, so this masters course was the perfect combination!
Did your Nuffield Research Placement have an effect on the choices that you made after finishing school/college/university?
Yes, the invaluable hands-on experience at NIMR made me realise I definitely want to pursue a career in science. I still speak of my experience at NIMR, till this day! The NRP set me apart from other candidates when first applying to university.
What would your advice be to young people thinking about a career in STEM?
The Nuffield Research Placement will entail several transferable skills that will be valuable for your future, even if you’re unsure about a career in STEM. Go for it!