12 March 2014, 12pm-1pm, Room GLT3, Warwick Medical School Building, University of Warwick
'Student flora as student projects'
Dr Lori Snyder, Reader, Kingston University, London
University students are full of interesting flora. We all are really, but university students in particular are at risk for transmission and carriage of some nasty bacteria, like Neisseria meningitidis. Drinking, hanging out in bars, shouting at one another over the music, smoking, kissing, and other intimate contact are all risk factors for transmission of meningococci from student to student. As part of final year and taught MSc projects, we have taken throat swabs from students at two universities from Southwest London to investigate the genomics of the bacteria they are carrying. Results from one university suggest that perhaps the carriage of N. meningitidis is lower than previously reported rates for university students, while the other is closer to what might be expected. These results will be presented and discussed, as will findings from the genome sequence of a N. meningitidis isolate taken from a student.
Dr. Snyder is a Reader in Biotechnology at Kingston University where she is the Course Director for the Kingston University MSc in Biotechnology. Her research uses bacterial genome sequence data to conduct comparative analyses, revealing differences within and between strains and species. Dr. Snyder began genomic analyses during her PhD at Emory University, USA, with Prof. Bill Shafer, where she investigated Neisseria gonorrhoeae and Neisseria meningitidis. Work on these species continued during her post-doctoral research at the University of Oxford. As a post-doctoral fellow at the University of Birmingham, Dr. Snyder worked on the xBASE genome database and its suite of analysis tools. She joined Kingston University in 2009 and has since received research funding from Sparks, WestFocus, SWan Alliance, and BSAC, as well as generous internal funding and support.