Marisa Salomon Beltran

Marisa  Salomon Beltran
Year of graduation: 

During my undergraduate years, I worked for almost three years as an undergraduate research assistant in Dr. Marc Cox's laboratory focusing on prostate cancer research. The approach I used for my research project was yeast genetics.

In the fall of 2013, I joined the Interdisciplinary Graduate Program in Human Toxicology at The University of Iowa. I chose to pursue a Ph.D. in Human Toxicology because many disciplines from all area fields in science come together into one program. This is motivating as the diversity will broaden my knowledge of the many ongoing research projects in different areas.

My first lab rotation was with Dr. Tom Peters, an expert in industrial hygiene. The project involves the generation of nanoparticles along with the collection of aerosols that are damaging to our respiratory system. This lab rotation was challenging and I am enthusiastic to learn more about nanoparticles.

For my second lab rotation,  I worked in Dr. Jerry Weiss’s lab. There, I studied the immune system, particularly gram-negative bacterial endotoxins present in many settings as a potential environmental “pollutant.” My third lab rotation was in Dr. Gaby Ludewig’s lab where I worked on cancer research and on polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs).

In my free time, I enjoy learning languages and frequently practice my conversational skills. In addition, I enjoy long walks and being in the outdoors, so Iowa is an appropriate place for me. When it comes to sports, I most enjoy swimming, and I am currently learning how to sail. Lastly, I love to try all types of food and cook gourmet cuisine.

Previous education:

BS, Molecular and Cellular Biochemistry
The University of Texas at El Paso (UTEP)
Thesis title: 

Novel Tools for Targeting PCBs and PCB Metabolites Using ssDNA Aptamers.

Current position: 
Research Assistant
Current employer/institution: 
The University of Iowa