60 seconds with Nancy Cross, Analyst
Q: Tell us about you
A: I have just graduated from the University of Manchester where I read Biochemistry. I studied a wide range of topics, my favourites including immunology, glycobiology in disease, and bioethics. I studied for a semester at Stony Brook University, New York where I experienced a new and unique learning environment and was able to immerse myself in campus culture (go Seawolves!). I completed a dissertation on immune checkpoints in cancer and checkpoint inhibitors approved by the FDA for immunotherapy, and a project on intracellular protein trafficking. As part of my degree I also completed a year’s placement at Imperial College London working on Salmonella infection.
Outside of work, I do a lot of yoga (I’m currently working on my handstands and armstands…) and also play with a local netball team. I love to travel and am always looking for new destinations to combine two of my favourite things: travelling and eating. A food tour of Italy is high up on my list.
Q: Tell us more about your work at Imperial College London
A: At Imperial I was part of a research group in the Centre for Molecular Bacteriology and Infection (CMBI), working specifically on Salmonella infection. My work in the lab was to investigate if certain molecules that are crucial to our immune response were affected by the Salmonella bacteria. I was trained in many techniques including CRISPR gene-editing, flow cytometry, immunofluorescence microscopy, and mice work. The research group at Imperial are hoping to publish a paper soon that will include my work.
This placement gave me real insight into the world of scientific research and I saw first-hand how scientific advancements can translate to progress in tackling human disease. Infection with the Salmonella bacteria can cause either Typhoid or gastroenteritis and so it is extremely important to understand how the bacteria works and translate this back to how we can protect people from infection. As more drug-resistant strains of Salmonella emerge, it is becoming a really important area of study.
Q: What is your role at Lightning Health?
A: I will be working as an Analyst at Lightning Health, performing desk research to build the evidence base required to generate insights and recommendations for our clients. I will also be helping our clients to gain on-demand insights using the Lightning Health Accelerated Payer and Physician Insight Platform to help build on these recommendations.
My experience working in an academic research environment has provided me with the skills needed to conduct this research efficiently and effectively.
Article published 5 January 2021.