As my third lab rotation I joined Dr. Michael Brent’s Computational Genomics lab. Genomics is a rather foreign subject for me as it’s been over 8 years since I’ve touched anything Biology related. Actually, I have done a project in my last years as an undergraduate under Dr. Adam Smith where we tried to simulate mouse and bird vocalizations via GANs. Yet, genomics still felt very much out of reach when I started my rotation.
With a lot of Wikipedia articles, youtube videos, and paper reading I have garnered few bits of Genomics knowledge over the rotation period. Specifically, I have learned a lot about the structure and function of genes and gene regulation. During the rotation, I was tasked with getting up to speed with the codebase of an existing pre-print: Predicting which genes will respond to perturbations of a TF: TF-independent properties of genes are major determinants of their responsiveness. I was able to find some alternative perspectives on existing results under the direction of Dr. Brent.
I found my experiences during this rotation exciting and decided to join the lab officially! I am happy with how supportive the lab members are especially considering I have little to no background Genomics knowledge. Fun fact is that many graduate researchers in the lab also started out on a similar note, expanding their knowledge base over the years.
For the immediate future, I will continue working on the pre-print that I have been working on during the rotation, applying the technique to a completely different dataset to see whether we arrive at similar results.
I’m really happy with the results of this rotation and look forward to what projects I will undertake as a member of the Brent Lab.