Athena is a 3rd year PhD candidate investigating metabolic reprogramming in liver cancer in the University of Melbourne and Peter MacCallum Cancer Centre. Specifically, her work focuses on characterizing Nrf2-driven metabolic reprogramming with the aim of determining a metabolic vulnerability that can be targeted in cancers with constitutively activated Nrf2, including liver cancer. She mainly uses transgenic zebrafish lines she has generated to help answer these questions.
After completing her undergraduate degree in BSc Industrial Pharmacy at the University of the Philippines, she proceeded with undertaking a Master’s degree at Seoul National University in Korea. She then worked for a year as a research assistant before accepting a PhD position in the University of Melbourne under the supervision of Dr Andrew Cox and Dr Kristin Brown.
Aside from this, she is a co-founder of a start-up providing a mobile app reviewer for students taking the Pharmacy board examination in the Philippines. She is also involved in community leadership where she took on the role of the President of FASTCO, a Victoria-wide Filipino student organisation, last year. In her free time, Athena shoots for such as graduations or weddings. She also enjoys travelling and trying out food places around Melbourne.