Heinrich Heine Gymnasium, Bottrop (Abitur in 2002), Heinrich Heine University Duesseldorf, B.Sc in biochemistry (2008), University of Bristol, M.Res in biochemistry (2009), University of East Anglia, PhD in biomedical sciences (2013)
Degussa Germany, Cognis Germany
Me and my work
I am a molecular biologist with a hint of biochemistry
My work is focused on pain research. We want to know why some people feel more pain than others and some can not feel pain at all.
We hope that based on our research we will be able to identify new drugs which can help people to not feel too much pain!
My Typical Day
Giving my cells their favourite food and loads of love
For my research I use cells, both embryonic stem cells as well as induced pluripotent stem cells.
And they are very fussy, they need fresh food nearly every day (some need to be fed daily). Also some cells prefer it more sugery, whilst some need more salt. Therefore every morning I start with checking my cells and see if they are happy and healthy. Then I feed them and if I am happy with what I see I might use them for experiments. Which means that I try to become a different cell type, like for example muscle cells or brain cells. This process is called differentiation and can take a couple of days up to a couple of weeks. I will monitor my cells regularly, take images andwhen I think my cells are not happy anymore or seem very happy I will analyse them on gene and protein basis so I can see why some did well and others did not.
How would you describe yourself in 3 words?
friendly, crazy, just Connie
What living thing amazes you the most?
I do not think I can pick one favourite, though I like my parrot Pedro who is very (annoyingly) clever
What is the most fun thing you've done?
Were you ever in trouble in at school?
Every couple of year, mainly every 3 years- very relieable…. but unfortunately always a different lesson/ teacher, but still you could count on me to do something stupid in regular intervals
If you weren't a scientist, what would you be?
Maybe a teacher, maybe a writer, maybe a musician….who will ever know
What's the best thing you've done as a scientist?
coming in and finding out that one of my ideas might actually prove true! Always a good feeling
Who or what inspired you to become a scientist?
Probably my dad (and he is not even a scientist). Then probably my teachers (except for my physics teacher- I hated physics in school and I had to study it during my undergraduate studies, wasn’t that bad though in the end)
What would your superpower be?
Reading someones mind
If I could change one thing about the world...
making sure that everyone is healthy and has enough water
My favourite CHRISTMAS LECTURE memory is:
The most Fantastic thing about Life is:
Breathing, feeling, listening, seeing, pick one – they are all brilliant