SBP OETIS Chronicle FY2019 Q3 & Q4

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OETIS Chronicle

In this issue: ‣ GSBS Annual Retreat ‣ SBP-SN Mental Well-Being Peer Support Group ‣ 2019 Manuscript Writing Workshop Series ‣ and more!

SBP-SN Mental Well-Being Peer Support Group By Joana Borlido, Ph.D. | Postdoctoral Associate in the D’Angelo Lab Briefly: in January 2019, SBP-SN launched a mental well-being peer support group to provide SBP researchers with a safe forum to share concerns, struggles and/or insecurities, and discuss strategies to cope with the pressures underlying our scientific line of work. Our lives as researchers are an ongoing rollercoaster of emotions. The feelings of euphoria when achieving good results are what drive most of us, but the feelings of despair when experiments fail can be quite overpowering and daunting. The critical thinking that we apply to our scientific experiments can have very detrimental consequences when we apply it directly to ourselves. We end up feeling alone and overwhelmed, that we have somehow failed, and that we are the only ones struggling (while everyone else is seemingly cruising through life). Does this sound familiar to you? If yes, know that you are not alone. Recent surveys have highlighted alarmingly high rates of graduate students who have sought help for anxiety or depression, and these mental health issues are also Co-founders of the new SBP-SN Mental prevalent among postdocs. The stigma associated with mental health is harmful and the underlying pressure to succeed and move forward in our careers make acknowledging (or Well-Bring Peer Support Group: Jonatan Matalonga Borrel, Ph.D. (left) seeking help to treat) mental problems, major barriers. & Joana Borlido, Ph.D. (right)

SBP-SN wants to actively promote mental health awareness at SBP and to take a stand in ensuring everyone feels mentally supported, understood, and safe. With that in mind, in January 2019 we launched the new SBP-SN Mental Well-Being Peer Support Group. Led by SBP postdocs Jonatan and Joana (pictured), the peer support group meets on the 1st and 3rd Wednesdays of the month, from 12.30-1.30pm in Building 10 auditorium. (Continues on Page 7)

OETIS and SBP faculty develop comprehensive Manuscript Writing Workshop Series for postdocs and graduate students By Nisha A. Cavanaugh, Ph.D. | Sr. Manager, Postdoctoral & Academic Programs Responses to OETIS’s 2018 Annual postdoc survey indicated a majority of postdocs want further training in manuscript writing. To meet these needs, in 2019 OETIS and several SBP faculty developed and launched a comprehensive Manuscript Writing Workshop Series to provide postdoctoral scholars and graduate students with the tools and resources to effectively write and submit a research manuscript. (Continues on Page 6)

Professor & Faculty Advisor for Postdoctoral Training, Dr. Malene Hansen, kicked off OETIS’s Manuscript Writing Workshop Series with a module on how to develop a research story and what to consider when creating effective figures. In her presentation, she discussed how to identify an appropriate journal as well as describe what impact factor is and mentor/mentee responsibilities in the manuscript writing process.

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GSBS Retreat: Scientific and Professional Development for our Graduate Students By Andrew Bankston, Ph.D. | Manager, Graduate Student Success The 10th Annual Graduate School Retreat, sponsored in part by a contribution from Pfizer, was held May 15-17, 2019 at Lakehouse Hotel and Resort in San Marcos. The retreat kicked off with a full day of professional development during which the graduate students were led through the process of developing an Individual Development Plan (IDP) by OETIS Senior Manager Nisha Cavanaugh, Ph.D. Through various exercises, the students assessed their technical and transferable skills. They also identified areas for growth and development on which they then focused while creating their career vision boards with OETIS Director Diane Klotz, Ph.D. The first day concluded with career roundtables (photos on left) and a networking session, providing students with the opportunity to network with local professionals and learn more about their careers in pharma, biotech, academia, business development, and science/medical writing.

Over the course of the next two days, each student gave a 15-minute presentation on their research project and how it addressed the retreat theme of “Niche and Novelty.” Each student’s presentation was evaluated by peers and by the faculty in attendance. Based on the student evaluations, the Howling Coyote for Best Talk award was given to Lisa Elmen (a 5th-year graduate student in Dr. Peterson’s lab, photo on left). This year’s keynote speaker was Eugene Yeo, Ph.D., Professor of Cellular and Molecular Medicine at UC San Diego, who interacted with the students during their talks as well as at the dinner on Thursday night (group photo bottom right). Thank you to the student retreat organizers, Joe Fromm and Mallika Iyer, for their hard work in helping the GSBS staff organize the retreat, taking leadership of events during the retreat, and planning a social group outing for the students.

OETIS Chronicle

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OETIS expands its reach to enhance postdoctoral training at the national level By Nisha A. Cavanaugh, Ph.D. | Sr. Manager, Postdoctoral & Academic Programs The 17th Annual National Postdoctoral Association (NPA) Meeting was held in Orlando, Florida from April 12-14, 2019. It’s the largest national conference and networking event dedicated to the postdoctoral community, in which institutions, organizations, and postdocs share best practices and policies committed to enhancing postdoctoral training. More than 300 postdocs, postdoc administrators, faculty, and others involved with postdoctoral training gathered for this 3-day conference. At the annual meeting, OETIS team members Diane Klotz, Ph.D. (Director, OETIS) and Nisha Cavanaugh, Ph.D. (Senior Manager, Postdoctoral & Academic Programs) co-presented several workshops to share ideas and programs that have been successfully implemented at Sanford Burnham Prebys and provide tools and resources to postdocs and other institutions. Below is a list of the presentations and brief description of each.

“Achieve Better: Understand HOW you do WHAT do you” (workshop co-presented by N. Cavanaugh & D. Klotz) In this session, Nisha and Diane provided a framework that encouraged postdocs and postdoc administrators to identify their major strengths, and then use that knowledge to understand the way they approach problem solving. The session also addressed how various strengths best align with the problem management cycle. (photo above) “Find Your Voice! Apply Negotiation Tools to Improve Communication and Address Conflict” (workshop co-presented by D. Klotz and Josh Henkin, Ph.D. (Founder, STEM Career Services)) In this session, Diane co-presented on the concepts of principled negotiation and the five core concerns towards understanding how they impact our approach to communication and conflict. Attendees were then challenged with analyzing case studies to seek out the root goal and core concern(s) of each party which could help lead to improved communication as well as a more successful and desired outcome/resolution. (photo right)

“myPDO session: Growing Our Careers” (workshop co-presented by D. Klotz) Building on the myPDO session from the 2018 NPA Annual Meeting, Diane and colleagues presented to postdoc office administrators data that were collected from the group on job satisfaction, potential growth, and challenges faced in the career path of overseeing a postdoctoral training office. Towards providing the attendees with information to support their own professional development and career progression, the presenters collectively shared analyses of the types of skills and competencies needed and expected throughout career progression in the field.

OETIS Chronicle

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Congratulations to our recent GSBS graduates! Clyde Campbell, Ph.D. Thesis title: In vivo lineage conversion of vertebrate muscle into early endoderm-like cells Mentor: Dr. Duc Dong Graduated April 24, 2019 Clyde graduated with a B.S. in Molecular Biology in 2013 from the University of California, San Diego. He performed his undergraduate research in the laboratory of Dr. David Traver, under the mentorship of Dr. David Stachura, where he focused on hematopoietic development studying lineage commitment, specification, differentiation, and dysregulation of hematopoietic stem/progenitor cells utilizing the zebrafish model.

In 2014, Clyde entered the Graduate School of Biomedical Sciences under the mentorship of Dr. Duc Dong. During this time, Clyde studied in vivo cell lineage potential, leveraging the zebrafish as a practical vertebrate platform to determine factors and mechanisms necessary to induce differentiated cells of one germ layer to adopt the lineage of another. Clyde found that ectopic co-expression of sox32 with Oct4 in several non-endoderm lineages is able to specifically and cell-autonomously trigger an early endoderm genetic program. This discovery of possibly unlimited lineage potential of differentiated cells in vivo challenges our understanding of cell lineage restriction and may pave the way towards a vast new in vivo supply of replacement cells for degenerative diseases such as diabetes.

Miguel Reina Campos, Ph.D. Thesis title: Increase Serine and One-Carbon Pathway Metabolism by PKC Lambda/Iota Deficiency Promotes Neuroendocrine Prostate Cancer Mentor: Dr. Maria Diaz-Meco Graduated May 6, 2019 Miguel was born in Barcelona, Spain. Early in his childhood, Miguel developed a sense of curiosity, competitiveness, independence and out-of-the-box thinking fostered by his parents and school teachers. Miguel started a Biochemistry degree in the University of Barcelona, where he specialized in molecular biology, enzymology, protein structure, animal physiology, and cancer biology. During that time, he trained in two different research laboratories; first studying the role of TGF in liver cancer in Dr. Fabregat’s lab in Barcelona, and later, studying the role of mutant p53 in pancreatic cancer in the lab of Dr. Stiewe, in Germany. Upon graduation, Miguel pursued a M.S. in Biomedical Research at the University Pompeu Fabra, in Barcelona, which brought him to the laboratory of Peter K. Vogt at the Scripps Research Institute in San Diego to work on a 6-month project studying the role of the PI3K oncogene. Miguel joined Maria Diaz-Meco and Jorge Moscat’s lab at Sanford Burnham Prebys Medical Discovery Institute shortly after he completed his master’s project. He was rapidly caught up in several ongoing projects in the lab and was offered a Ph.D. position in the Graduate Program. While collaborating in multiple other studies, which have resulted in 11 co-authored publications, Miguel has worked on two main projects. The first one identified p62 as an essential mediator of the antiinflammatory properties of the Vitamin D receptor (VDR) in hepatic stellate cells of the liver, which was published in Cancer Cell. More recently, the second project has led to the discovery of the novel tumor suppressor role of Protein Kinase C lambda/iota in a particularly aggressive type of prostate cancer termed Neuroendocrine Prostate Cancer (NEPC). In his free time, Miguel has maximized the outdoor opportunities that San Diego offers, especially the ocean, where you can often find him chasing strong winds and waves with his wife and friends. OETIS Chronicle

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Congratulations to our recent GSBS graduates! Marisa Sanchez, Ph.D. Thesis title: Coordination of adaptive and pro-apoptotic responses to oxidative stress at the mRNA translation level Mentor: Dr. Dieter Wolf Graduated May 14, 2019 Marisa was born and raised in the suburbs of Los Angeles. She knew she wanted to be a scientist as early as she could remember. Her passion for science and the human body was further developed during her high school years. In 2008, Marisa started as an undergraduate at UC San Diego. While at UCSD, she worked as a lab assistant in a protein biology lab and a neuroscience lab studying Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s Disease. These experiences greatly reinforced her career in research. She loved working at the bench performing and learning about different experiments and methods. She graduated in 2012 with her Bachelor of Science in Human Biology. Upon graduation, she joined the lab of Sujan Shresta at the La Jolla Institute as a research technician studying dengue fever for two years. In 2014, she joined Dieter Wolf’s lab at SBP Medical Discovery Institute as a graduate student. Her research involved gaining a better understanding of cellular stress responses on a fundamental level and in cancer. During her time at SBP, she has also been an active member of the graduate program and SBP community, serving as Vice President and President. She has enjoyed the opportunity to volunteer in various avenues of science outreach such as participating in the San Diego Science and Engineering Expo, mentoring high school students and teaching 3rd grade science to deaf and hard of hearing classes. When she’s not in lab, she enjoys staying active by participating in charity races and bike rides to raise money for cancer research with organizations such as The Leukemia and Lymphoma Society, St. Jude Children’s Hospital and Padres Pedal the Cause. She recently completed a trek to Everest Base Camp to fundraise for blood cancer research.

Cameron Pernia, Ph.D. Thesis title: Hyper-excitable neurons produce hypo-functional neuronal networks: evidence from modeling CRMP2 in bipolar disorder Mentor: Dr. Evan Snyder Graduated June 3, 2019 Cameron was born in the small town of Webster, TX near the NASA Johnson Space Center. Cameron attended the University of California Santa Cruz for his undergraduate career. There he would pursue surfing, water polo, and science. Cameron had always been interested in the most complex and enigmatic machine to ever exist, the human brain. At the end of his four years in Santa Cruz, Cameron left with degrees in molecular, cellular, and developmental biology as well as psychology. In the following year, Cameron met Dr. Brian Tobe, who utilized induced pluripotent stem cells to model bipolar disorder, and brought Cameron onto the project as an intern, which was being performed in Dr. Evan Snyder’s lab. Cameron’s research for his Ph.D. has focused on utilizing stem cells as a platform for modeling neurological disorders, to gain a mechanistic understanding for how the most microscopic processes in the brain culminate in complex macro-phenomena like cognition and behavior. During his time at SBP, Cameron has been an active member of the graduate program and SBP community, serving on the GSA for two years as the Officer for External Affairs, and has been a vocal member of the SBP softball team. At home, Stacy Lewis and their dog Cruz, have provided immeasurable amounts of patience, love, and support during Cameron’s pursuit of his PhD. OETIS Chronicle

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GSBS recruits its next class of graduate students By Andrew N. Bankston, Ph.D. | Manager, Graduate Student Success The Graduate School of Biomedical Sciences (GSBS) welcomed fourteen applicants to campus to interview for our Ph.D. program on February 22. The applicants enjoyed meeting our current students, interviewing with prospective faculty mentors, and touring campus. The day started with an orientation to GSBS and an overview of our program, including presentations by Associate Dean of Curriculum Alessandra Sacco, Ph.D., Associate Dean of Admissions Duc Dong, Ph.D., and OETIS Director Diane Klotz, Ph.D. In between interviews with prospective mentors and the Admissions Committee, current students were available to answer questions and share their graduate student experience. The prospective students enjoyed a campus tour with GSBS Manager Andrew Bankston, Ph.D., and Shared Resources Coordinator Ericka Eggleston, and the day concluded with a happy hour and poster session with the SBP community. The prospective students were able to view and discuss posters from several GSBS students while interacting with faculty and staff. In Fall 2019, the Graduate School looks forward to welcoming our newest graduate student cohort to Sanford Burnham Prebys.

OETIS and SBP faculty develop comprehensive Manuscript Writing Workshop Series for postdocs and graduate students (continued from page 1) This 4-module series which spanned January – March 2019 covered the following areas: • • • • • • • • • • • • • • •

developing a research story dos and don’ts for creating effective figures writing an abstract describing the purpose of each section of a manuscript emphasizing significance and relevance within the research field discussing mentor and mentee responsibilities authorship and ethical responsibilities how to select an appropriate journal editorial and review processes impact factor how to handle major and minor revisions considering whether to resubmit or not common mistakes and criticisms how to review a manuscript advice/tips/strategies from SBP faculty on writing and submitting a research manuscript

In Module 2, Associate Professor and Associate Dean of Curriculum, Dr. Alessandra Sacco, described the purpose and goals of each section of a manuscript. She discussed ways in which an author can emphasize significance in a manuscript and relevance to their field.

Fifty postdocs, graduate students, and senior researchers attended at least one of the modules. Eleven postdocs and graduate students completed all four modules and were awarded certificates of completion.

In Module 4, junior and senior SBP faculty shared their tips and strategies for writing and submitting a research manuscript. Based on their experiences, they strongly encouraged graduate students and postdocs to write up as much of their work as possible before leaving the lab.

OETIS Chronicle

In Module 3, former Nature Biotechnology Editor, Dr. Jason Kreisberg, described the editorial and review processes. He gave insight into how to compose a cover letter to an editor, and how to receive feedback once a manuscript has been reviewed.

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SBP-SN Mental Well-Being Peer Support Group

(Continued from Page 1)

These meetings provide a safe forum for our peers to share struggles and discuss ways to cope with feelings of anxiety, depression, inadequacy, inferiority, and/or failure. This is an inclusive group, and every researcher (Ph.D. or non-Ph.D.) at SBP is welcome to join. No one is forced to talk unless they want to! We have no requirements other than to keep the identity of our members and their issues completely confidential. At the moment we are a group of ~7 to 10 people. For anyone considering joining, please note that this is a friendly, warm and inviting group; we hold no judgement; we all have our own insecurities and vulnerabilities, and it is important to recognize that these are not signs of weakness or inferiority. And if you have overcome mental health issues in the past feel free to come along and share your experiences; you will be helping your peers immensely and will be rewarded with profound gratitude! If you are curious and want to find out more about the group, feel free to contact Joana or Jonatan at And if you see us around the SBP campus, come talk to us! Important notes: This is NOT a substitute for medical advice. If you feel overwhelmed or that your anxiety/depression is out of control, please consult with a doctor. For assistance in conflict resolution contact the or call 858-924-2884 to reach the SBP Ombudsman at any time. Finally, you can also get private and free help through the SBP onsite counseling services, by calling Dr. Welch at 858-382-8816 to make an appointment. Further reading:; nbt.4089; and

OETIS recognizes SBP trainee accomplishments … Chiara Nicoletti, Ph.D. (Postdoctoral Associate in Dr. Lorenzo Puri’s lab) received an American Heart Association Postdoctoral Fellowship for her research proposal on “Identification and functional characterization of pathogenic SNPs for muscle-driven cardiovascular disorders”. Jose Nieto Torres, Ph.D. (Postdoctoral Associate in Dr. Malene Hansen’s lab) was selected to present his research at the 3rd Annual La Jolla Aging Meeting. His talk title was “Regulating cellular recycling: role of LC3B phosphorylation in vesicle transport”. David Sala Cano, Ph.D. (Postdoctoral Fellow in Dr. Alessandra Sacco’s lab) was selected to present his research at the 3rd Annual La Jolla Aging Meeting. His talk title was “The Stat3-Fam3a axis regulates skeletal muscle regenerative potential”. Jose Nieto Torres, Ph.D. (Postdoctoral Associate in Dr. Malene Hansen’s lab) won 1st place at the Open Mic Night event (oral presentation competition for early career scientists) at the Sanford Consortium for Regenerative Medicine! Koen Galenkamp, Ph.D. (Postdoctoral Associate in Dr. Cosimo Commisso’s lab) received a Tobacco-Related Disease Research Program Postdoctoral Fellowship for his research proposal on “Targeting pH Homeostasis as a Therapeutic Approach for Pancreatic Cancer.” Ee Phie Tan, Ph.D. (Postdoctoral Fellow in Dr. Malene Hansen’s lab) received an American Diabetes Association Postdoctoral Fellowship for her research proposal on “Probing mechanisms of tissue-specific and selective autophagy.” Antonella Pinto, Ph.D. (Postdoctoral Associate in Dr. Alexey Terskikh’s lab) won a Merit Award from the International Society for Stem Cell Research (ISSCR). Her abstract on using stem cells to grow functional hair follicles was selected for a talk at the ISSCR Annual Meeting. Share your research accomplishments with us. Email and tell us your exciting news! OETIS Chronicle

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Training in Professional Etiquette for Postdocs and Graduate Students By Andrew N. Bankston, Ph.D. | Manager, Graduate Student Success One of the challenges that postdocs and graduate students often face is being viewed as a trainee rather than a professional at business events. In alignment with the goal of the Torrey Pines Training Consortium (TPTC) to provide professional and leadership competencies to early career scientific professionals on the Torrey Pines Mesa, TPTC hosted a Business & Professional Etiquette Luncheon with acclaimed author and professional etiquette expert, Mary Mitchell. The workshop covered the do’s and don’ts for presenting oneself professionally in written and oral communication as well as specifics for networking and dining events. Mary demonstrated proper form for a handshake and the subtle cues we may mistakenly send through our body language. Postdocs and graduate students also learned the basics of formal dining during the luncheon to help them stand out as a well-rounded professional at their next business meal or job interview.

International advisors from the four TPTC member institutions were also on hand to talk with foreign national postdocs and graduate students about cultural norms in the U.S. and answer any questions that the trainees had. The workshop ended with general networking that allowed the postdocs and graduate students to practice what they had just learned.

If you would like to contribute content to the next issue, please contact

Postdoc & Student Counts for FY 2019 Q3 POSTDOC & STUDENT COUNTS AS OF APRIL 12, 2019 Postdocs = 131 Postdoc Associates Postdoc Associates, Sr. Postdoc Fellows Graduate Students = 51 Graduate Students, SBP Graduate Students, External

106 5 20

Postdocs = 11 Postdoc Associates Postdoc Associates, Sr. Postdoc Fellows

11 0 0

31 20

Graduate Students = 5 Graduate Students, SBP Graduate Students, External

0 5

POSTDOCS & STUDENTS WHO LEFT SBP IN QUARTER: January – March 2019 Postdocs = 7 Postdoc Associates


Postdoc Associates, Sr.


Postdoc Fellows


Graduate Students = 5 Graduate Students, SBP Graduate Students, External

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HIRES BY QUARTER: January – March 2019

POSTDOC IDP REPORT: January – March 2019 Annual IDP Update Sent = 37 PD/PI Participated in the process PD/PI who have not yet participated PD terms

22 12 3

1st Year IDP Sent = 7 PD/PI Participated in the process PD/PI who have not yet participated

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Postdoc & Student Counts for FY 2019 Q4 POSTDOC & STUDENT COUNTS AS OF JULY 24, 2019 Postdocs = 126

HIRES BY QUARTER: April – June 2019 Postdocs = 8 Postdoc Associates


Postdoc Associates


Postdoc Associates, Sr.


Postdoc Associates, Sr.


Postdoc Fellows


Postdoc Fellows


Graduate Students = 45 Graduate Students, SBP


Graduate Students, External


POSTDOCS & STUDENTS WHO LEFT SBP IN QUARTER: April - June 2019 Postdocs = 9 Postdoc Associates


Postdoc Associates, Sr.


Postdoc Fellows


Graduate Students = 8 Graduate Students, SBP Graduate Students, External

2 6

Graduate Students = 7 Graduate Students, SBP


Graduate Students, External


POSTDOC IDP REPORT Annual IDP Update Sent = 16 April – June 2019 PD/PI Participated in the process PD/PI who have not yet participated PD terms 1st Year IDP Sent = 5 April – May 2019 PD/PI Participated in the process PD/PI who have not yet participated

11 5 0

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Office of Education, Training, & International Services Diane M. Klotz, Ph.D. Director Ellen Smock Program Coordinator, OETIS Education & Training Nisha A. Cavanaugh, Ph.D. Senior Manager, Postdoctoral & Academic Programs

International Services Doug Broadhurst, M.A. Manager, International Services

Andrew N. Bankston, Ph.D. Manager, Graduate Student Success

Susie Bolor Senior International Advisor

Leadership Support Guy Salvesen, Ph.D. Faculty Advisor, Graduate Education

Malene Hansen, Ph.D. Faculty Advisor, Postdoctoral Training

Teddi Reilly Interim Vice President, Human Resources

contact with any questions or OETIS Chronicle

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