• Question: If you could accomplish one achievement in your career, regarding science, what would it be ?

    Asked by Harry to Barbara, Matt, Ravinder, Sophie, Tristan on 16 Mar 2015.
    • Photo: Barbara Shih

      Barbara Shih answered on 16 Mar 2015:

      I would love to be able to predict protein folding and interaction from DNA sequences. That would be the most amazing achievement I think, since you can potentially use that to design proteins to carry out specific functions (potentially leading to many potential cures and understanding of diseases). At the moment, DNA is much easier to study than proteins because we do not know how they fold / interact with each other, despite they are the major molecules that carry out cell functions.

    • Photo: Sophie Robinson

      Sophie Robinson answered on 16 Mar 2015:

      I would love to unveil what exactly this major mutation in a gene that causes blood cancer is doing to the cells to turn them cancerous. That way I could really help develop new therapies for patients.

    • Photo: Matthew Moore

      Matthew Moore answered on 18 Mar 2015:

      That’s such a good question and I’m not sure where my career will go in the long term or exactly which bugs I’ll be working on!

      In the short term I would love to develop better ways to link genotype to phenotype. By that I mean better predict the behaviour and traits of an organism from its genes!

      In medical microbiology this would mean that species concepts became less important and people could be diagnosed and a prognosis given after sequencing the bug infecting them.