We (the Field lab, https://www.neuro.duke.edu/people/faculty/greg-field) are interested in specialized cell types in the retina and where those cell types project in the brain. In the lab, we can measure the activity of retinal ganglion cells (RGC, neurons in the retina). There are many RGC subtypes, and we can use a technique called immunofluorescent staining to label cells (the cells will appear fluorescent/glow when viewed under a microscope). After labeling, we have access to the confocal microscopy core and can use microscopic imaging techniques to take high resolution images of the labeled RGCs (and other cell types) in the retina. The confocal microscope also lets us take images in three dimensions so we can examine each layer of the retina. For some of the projects, we are using mouse retina, and for other projects that I’m working on, we are using monkey retina.
You would have an opportunity to learn to prepare tissue from both species for immunofluorescent staining, and to learn how to collect high resolution images around the most interesting cells in a given sample. If this sounds interesting to you, please contact Lindsey Chew with a resume.
Prior research experience not required, but enthusiasm and 8-10 hrs/week expected (can be evenings/weekends).