Microbiology

  • Wendy Maury, Ph.D. - Carver College of Medicine Faculty Focus Interview

    What is your hometown?

    Newark, DE

    When did you join the University of Iowa faculty?

    1999

    How or why did you choose The University of Iowa?

    I visited the University of Iowa once for a scientific meeting and saw what a great place it is.

    What interested you to pursue virology?

    Viruses provide a window into the workings of the cell. I am interested in understanding how viruses take advantage of cellular pathways and what we can learn about those pathways from studying virus and cell interactions.

    The University of Iowa’s faculty members are united to provide exceptional patient care while advancing innovations in research and medical education. How does your work help translate new discoveries into patient centered care and education?

    A basic understanding of how viruses enter and replicate in human cells is needed in order to develop strategies to block those interactions.

    What kinds of professional opportunities or advantages does bring a faculty member at an academic medical center provide?

    The environment here at the University of Iowa provides wonderful opportunities for collaborative research. I have had the good fortune to establish collaborative studies with a number of faculty members both within my department and across of the UI Carver College of Medicine.

    Please describe your professional interests.

    I am interested in the interaction of viruses with host cells – how viruses get into cells, how viruses are expressed in cells and the defensive responses of the host cell.

    Please describe your interests in education.

    I have taught a lot of different kinds of students here - undergraduates, graduate students and medical students. It is rewarding to see the “lights go on” during a lecture as I get a point across. I want students to get as excited about virology as I am.

    How does working in a collaborative and comprehensive academic medical center benefit your work?

    The resources available here are remarkable; not only the infrastructure but the people as well.

    What are some of your outside interests?

    I like jogging, reading and jewelry making.

    What is the biggest change you've experienced in your field since you were a student?

    There are lots of new technologies that have pushed the field of molecular biology forward. Many of these new technologies, such as polymerase chain reaction, are now used daily in the lab.

    What one piece of advice would you give to today's students?

    Read and think a lot - not only about information directly relevant to your project, but about the bigger picture of science as well. Creativity comes from applying ideas identified in one field to other applications.

    What do you see as "the future" of virology?

    Viruses evolve rapidly and take advantage of new environments. With globalization, we will continue to see viruses emerge and adapt to new host species. It is an exciting time to be a virologist.

    In what ways are you engaged with the greater Iowa public (i.e. population based research, mentoring high school students, sharing your leadership/expertise with organizations or causes, speaking engagements off campus, etc.)?

    I am involved in organizing and running a state wide virology conference that is held every other year. This is a symposium that brings together virologists, post doctoral fellows and students at regent’s institutions and biotechnology companies across the state.

    University of Iowa
    Roy J. and Lucille A. Carver College of Medicine
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    Iowa City, IA 52242-2600
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