1) Your name, program, mentor(s), thesis title.
Ivan Xavier Albino Flores, Master of Science in the Integrated Biomedical Sciences program, Dr. Andrew Robles, Dr. Peter Houghton Characterization of Mechanisms of Resistance to Altertoxin II
2) Please tell me about yourself, why did you pick UT Health San Antonio, and your program.
I was born in Mayaguez, a western coastal town in Puerto Rico. I received my BS in Industrial Microbiology at University of Puerto Rico- Mayaguez in 2011. After graduation, I moved to Maryland to work as a research fellow for several years and decided to apply for graduate school. I chose UT Health San Antonio since it has a very good interdisciplinary and collaborative program, strong academic and professional support, and a personalized curriculum. In addition, San Antonio is a great city to live in with plenty to do.
3) Please provide a few sentences summarizing your thesis. What was the experience like for you?
I focused on Ewing sarcoma research and how the fungal metabolite altertoxin II selectively induces cell death in these cells. As part of my master’s thesis, I generated and characterized an altertoxin II-resistant Ewing sarcoma (EwS) cell line and screened for genes and mutations that potentially contribute to resistance using next generation sequencing.
4) What’s next?
I plan to focus on finding a career in microbiology and infectious diseases research, whether in a Ph.D. program or industry.
5) Any advice for your fellow graduate students?
Work smart, learn how to manage time the best way possible. Definitely be resilient and continue to pursue your career and professional pursuits.