Tara Bartolec graduated from the University of Sydney in 2015 with a Bachelor of Science (Molecular Biology and Genetics) and First Class Honours in Biochemistry. Her honours project in the lab of Professor Tony Weiss involved studying the behaviour of smooth muscle cells grown on biofunctionalised surfaces with the ultimate aim of informing future biomaterial design.
Tara then worked as a research assistant in Dr Tony Cesare’s lab at the Children’s Medical Research Institute in Westmead. Dr Cesare’s group focuses on understanding the basic principles governing how the cell (and cancer cells) react to DNA damage. Here, she contributed to many projects and generated essential lab resources and data.
Tara is currently working towards her PhD which is conducted under the supervision of Professor Marc Wilkins at UNSW Sydney. Her research involves use of novel and high tech mass spectrometry techniques (namely cross-linking mass spectrometry) to study the cell from a systems biology perspective, with a particular focus on protein structure and protein-protein interactions. This approach enables the discovery and characterisation of new insights into cellular function and dynamics. She recently presented her research at the annual Lorne Proteomics conference where she was awarded the Student Oral Award.
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