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Summer Intern Hopes to One Day Return to the IIDR as a Trainee

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Adree Khondker

A summer internship at the Michael G. DeGroote Institute for Infectious Disease Research (IIDR) has reaffirmed Adree Khondker’s desire to pursue a career in science.

After placing third in this year’s Bay Area Science and Engineering Fair (BASEF), Khondker, a first-year student in McMaster’s Health Sciences program, was invited to spend six weeks working in the Brown Lab.

“I enjoyed the experience very much,” says Khondker. “I’m very thankful to those IIDR members who showed me how to look at science, rather than just give me the facts.”

Under the supervision of Jonathan Stokes, Khondker spent his internship investigating drug-drug interactions – a vital component in the discovery of novel antibiotics.

Working with a small collection of screened drugs, he discovered that one in particular inhibited DNA replication.

“I pursued its mechanism of action and found that there were antibiotic interactions between it and Polymyxin B,” Khondker explains, adding that his finding differs from what the literature suggests.

Looking back on his time in the Brown Lab, Khondker says his colleagues’ novel approach to science has made a lasting impression on him, and he intends to take what he’s learned from them and apply it to his coursework.

“Lab meetings were always interesting and insightful,” he says. “I hope to come back as a trainee sometime in the near future.”