During the winter of 2010, I did a rotation in the Lombroso Lab. My project was on how the phosphorylation of STEP is involved in protection against glutamate excitotoxicity after treatment with the glutamate receptor agonist, (RS)-3,5-dihydroxyphenylglycine (DHPG). With the guidance of the postdocs in the lab, I purified STEP from cultured cells, and sent it for mass spectrometry analysis to identify phosphorylation sites within the protein that were induced after DHPG treatment.
There is a strong emphasis in the lab on developing students into scientists. While in the lab, I learned a lot about scientific communication through writing, reading, and discussing my project with Paul and the postdocs of the lab. I was also able to see how the lab put together publications, since the members of the lab were working together to finish several manuscripts during my time there. The lab works well as a unit, and I felt warmly welcomed into the group while I was there.