Martina Poletti

Introduction

I am a last year BBSRC DTP PhD student within the Korcsm√°ros group based at Earlham Institute and Quadram Institute, where in collaboration with Lindsay Hall, I am focusing on understanding how Bifidobacteria modulate epithelial cell function in the gut, especially its modulation of autophagy processes. In my PhD project, I combine computational and experimental approaches, including organoid-based screening and high-throughput confocal imaging, to identify specific pathways and bacterial modulators through which Bifidobacteria regulates autophagy in the gut, exerting beneficial effects on the intestinal epithelium.

I hold a BSc in Biotechnology from the University of Pavia (Italy) and an MSc in Molecular Nutrition and Toxicology from Wageningen University (Netherlands). My passion for microbiology started when investigating S.aureus bacterial biofilms during a semester abroad at Aarhus University, Denmark. During my MSc thesis at Wageningen University, I used transcriptomics data and bioinformatics to study the effect of dark chocolate intake on cardiovascular disease.

I am passionate about making science accessible to all. I have myself worked as a scientific communicator for the European Food Information Council based in Brussels, where I collaborated on European projects focused on nutrition, health and sustainability. I am also particularly fond of translating scientific findings into products with direct impact on people. During my PhD, I worked at Nutricia Danone Research in Utrecht (The Netherlands), where I collaborated to the selection of pre-prebiotic fibers with a positive impact on the human gut microbiome, effectively contributing to their addition to specialised nutritional products for people with specific needs.

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