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BMES 2023 RECAP

Figure 1. RAMLAB <3 BMES. 

BMES 2023 is in the books and we all enjoyed ourselves thoroughly at both the conference and the surrounding area! This is the first time our lab has traveled as a large group to a conference so it was very special to highlight all the work from everyone in the lab. Here are some nice photos of everyone in the group (including obligatory BMES logo photo!). 

Figure 2. Beautiful scenery in surrounding area. (L-R) Bella, Courtney, Andrew, and Thomas at Lake Crescent in Olympic National Park. 
Figure 3. Seattle weather treated us well! (L-R) Kanupriya, Andrew, Courtney, Thomas. 
Figure 4. Ready for full day of science.  (L-R) Kanupriya, Thomas, Andrew, Courtney, WIni inside the Amazon sphere workspace in Seattle. 
Figure 5. En route to Thai food! Spicy, but we survived. Special guest appearance by former lab member Karen Mancera Azamar (PhD student at UF in Porras Lab)! 

Lab Presentation Highlights

We had 6 total presenters (4 posters and 2 talks). It’s worth noting that many of the presenters were co-authors on most (if not all!) of the other posters, which really demonstrates the extent of collaboration and support among lab members in the group. For the PhD students (Kanupriya, Andrew, Courtney, Thomas) their work represents the culmination of the first big chapters of their respective theses and we’re nearing completion of manuscripts for all the work they presented at BMES that we hope to share in the next couple months. For those that just joined this summer (Bella as a Master’s Student and WIni as NSF REU student) they worked incredibly hard in a short period of time to put together some great work. It’s worth commending their mentors (Kanupriya and Thomas) for a great job supporting them as they got up to speed and learned complex new techniques and approaches. I’d like to also mention that this is our first time using ‘cloth-based’ posters (www.postersmith.com) and the quality/price/ease-of-transport was excellent. Definitely recommend if you want to avoid worrying about large postertubes while traveling in the future! 

Figure 6. RAMLAB BMES announcement. 
Figure 7. Thomas presenting his work ““High throughput morphological screening identifies chemically defined media that supports rapid mesenchymal stromal cell proliferation” 
Figure 8. Andrew presenting his work “Screening mesenchymal stromal cell morphological response to inflammatory signals for bioreactor based manufacturing of immunomodulatory extracellular vesicles” 
Figure 9. Courtney presenting her work to former FDA post-bac fellow (and kindred spirit) James Tronolone (current PhD student at Texas A&M) who also worked with Dr. Kyung Sung at FDA. 
Figure 10. Bella presenting her first poster at a major conference titled “Effects of storage time and temperature on MSC-EV yield and modulation of microglia morphology”, congrats! 
Figure 11. Wini presenting her strong work done as part of the UGA NSF REU site NanoBio (https://reu.engr.uga.edu/). Worth noting that both Andrew and Courtney participated in this REU program in Summer 2019. 
FIgure 12. Kanupriya presenting her work “Morphological response of activated microglia upon treatment with MSC-EVs is indicative of their functional changes”

What’s with the socks? 

(Ross here) I like socks. I’m not particularly flashy but I do appreciate a flashy, well-made sock. Sometimes I like to think of the lab as embodying that feeling when you see someone with a nice pair of socks. Unassuming but you look down and say “o, what do we have here? Those are some nice socks, I want to know more!” Then you inquire further and are pleasantly pleased. Ok, maybe that’s just me but you get the idea. So perhaps I’m imposing my love of socks on the lab a bit, but we had a democratic vote to pick an official RAMLAB sock and I’m pleased to announce that we all decided on the Ridge Supply Warm Red design. I was introduced to this brand because of cycling, but they’re great for all-purpose wear and hold up very well! After this announcement I expect sales of these socks to explode just like Travis Kelce jerseys. 

Figure 13. BMES+SOCKS=fire 
Figure 14. Higher magnification.  

Final thoughts 

BMES continues to be a great place to communicate findings in an incredibly supportive and inclusive environment. Besides meeting new folks, getting helpful feedback, and filling our brains with even more exciting ideas to pursue it wouldn’t be BMES without opportunities to reconnect and maintain important relationships. Finally, huge congratulations to the meeting co-chairs Dr. Stacey Finley, Dr. Brendan Harley, and Dr. Kelly Stevens for the AMAZING job organizing such a successful event! 

For those interested in learning more about our group, please connect on LinkedIn and be on the lookout for specific recruitment postings to join our group and work on NSF and NIH funded projects. 

10/1/18 Dr. Marklein officially begins as faculty at UGA!

Follow @rossmarklein and @RAMLAB_UGA on Twitter for research updates