Name: Augusto Furio Balula
Mentor: Scott Heibert
Hello, my name is Augusto Furio Balula, from Brazil. I am studying Biotechnology in Federal University of São Carlos – Brazil, in which I intend to complete my undergraduate studies in the next year.
I choose to attend VISRA because I found that it is a very well organized program which allows me to work with biotechnology, especially in the medical area, which I want to learn more because I only worked in the agricultural area before. Vanderbilt is a prestigious university and its cancer center is reference in the United States, which is one more really good reason to attend in this program.
My mentor is Ph.D Scott W. Hiebert. He is a great mentor and researcher which help his students and colleagues. His lab focuses in the study of the molecular mechanisms of acute leukemia, cell cycle control, and the action of tumor suppressors. Basically I work in a project which its main goal is to analyze the specific interacting regions between two proteins that have their activities changed in transcriptional regulation of many genes during acute myeloid leukemia (AML) caused by chromosomal translocation t(16;21) or chromosomal inversion inv(16)(p13.3q24.3).
I am very grateful to participate in the VISRA program of 2013 .This program will allow me to learn more about scientific research in the medical area, will open doors to future graduate study opportunities, will help me to increase my professional network, will allow me to meet people from other countries and experience other cultures. I hope to make many friends here, study and learn a lot, and have much fun.