Skip to main content
Premium Trial:

Request an Annual Quote

What's a Boost for Getting an Academic Job? Industry Experience


WashU's Li Ding says a stint in industry helped shape her research focus and move her along in academia.

Between her postdoc and her current position as a research instructor at the Washington University in St. Louis's genome center, Li Ding did a stint in industry that helped change the focus of her research.

During her postdoc in Suzanne Pfeffer's lab at Stanford University, Ding studied the genes involved in vascular transport. In particular, she focused on Trp47, a protein responsible for trafficking magnesium phosphate receptors from the endosome to the transcardial network. She worked on identifying all the other proteins associated with Trp47.

Then, she started at Insight Genomics, where she began to work in cancer. Ding worked on in silico discovery of druggable genes. "I did a lot of EST and microarray analysis to identify genes with differential expression patterns in different cancer types," she says. "I think from there, I started to become interested in cancer research."

"It helped me to move into my current position," Ding adds. Based on her previous research into understanding differential gene expression in different cancer types, she now leads the medical genomics group at the WashU genome center. "I think my industry experience really helped me," she says.

The Scan

Could Mix It Up

The US Food and Drug Administration is considering a plan that would allow for the mixing-and-matching of SARS-CoV-2 vaccines and boosters, the New York Times says.

Closest to the Dog

New Scientist reports that extinct Japanese wolf appears to be the closest known wild relative of dogs.

Offer to Come Back

The Knoxville News Sentinel reports that the University of Tennessee is offering Anming Hu, a professor who was acquitted of charges that he hid ties to China, his position back.

PNAS Papers on Myeloid Differentiation MicroRNAs, Urinary Exosomes, Maize Domestication

In PNAS this week: role of microRNAs in myeloid differentiation, exosomes in urine, and more.