Lubin receives the 2018 Lieberman Award
Kelsey Lubin, graduate student in Dr. Knipp’s lab, has received the 2018 Lieberman Award for outstanding service and teaching assistance. Kelsey grew up in Mount Sinai, NY playing sports and going on field trips with the various science clubs which she was involved with. Those field trips, which involved guided lab sessions investigating genetically modified foods and genetic mutations, was where she realized that she enjoyed science and wanted to continue her education by majoring in Biochemistry at Siena College in Loudonville, NY. An undergraduate summer research project led to interest in seeking a Ph.D. “Pharmaceutical science interested me because of its direct impact on societal needs. The IPPH department at Purdue landed at the top of my list because of the impactful research in a wide variety of areas and its direct connections with industry experts”, stated Lubin. Her current research involves developing and optimizing a novel in vitro cell model of the blood-brain barrier. The model involves plating multiple brain cell types in a unique configuration to better mimic the brain physiology. The focus of her project is further optimization of this model with other cell lines to improve the performance of the model as a drug screening assay. This involves validation with model compounds and developing the model for potential high throughput screening. The goal of the project is to develop a physiologically relevant model of the blood-brain barrier that can be used for down-screening of drug candidates. “There is an ever present need for the development of neuropharmaceuticals, which is difficult to meet due the difficulty in developing drugs that cross the blood-brain barrier. We hope that by developing this model into a high throughput screening assay that is physiologically relevant those who utilize it would be able to select drugs that are more likely to be successful in later stages of development.” “Purdue has an immense amount of resources to utilize for research projects between core facilities and collaborations between departments. I’ve enjoyed the wide range of courses that I have been able to take and utilize for my own research and interests. Being in the Knipp lab has allowed me to play a role in multiple projects and develop a wide range of skills applicable to pharmaceutical industry. I have been lucky to have colleagues in the lab that have willingly given input to progress my projects and helped me to become a better scientist.” When not in the lab, Kelsey is a teaching assistant for the IPPH 562 manufacturing course. She also enjoys rooting for the New York Mets, watching sports documentaries, playing basketball and spending time with her IPPH friends.