Shirley Lin

PhD Student, Department of Microbiology & Immunology

What does your research focus on and why is it important?

My research focus is primarily respiratory viruses and their interactions with the host immune system. It's important to understand these interactions as they help us understand not only how our immune system is able to respond and combat viral infection but also potential mechanisms to reduce viral disease severity.

What did you learn from your biggest mistake?

I've always been a hesitant person and going through high school and university, my fear of doing something new definitely held me back. I do think about all the "what ifs" for if I had pursued something which I was hesitant about and how differently things would've turned out. From that, I learnt that it's okay to try new things and that if you're interested in something, you'll come out the other side with new experiences - even if things didn't turn out the way you expected.

How do you see your area of research evolving in the next five years?

Virology and immunology area definitely at the forefront right now, and there are all sorts of areas which are changing and evolving. In the next 5 years, I'd say that there will definitely be a lot more SARS-CoV-2 research with regards to antiviral drugs and vaccines. There's always new viruses entering into the human population (and old ones too), so I think the field of virology and immunology will evolve with whatever new virus is kicking around in those years.

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