Diana Jaramillo – ECD – Charlottetown

I am a postdoctoral fellow under the supervision of Dr. Ian Gardner and Dr. Larry Hammell. My main career interests lie in the evaluation of diagnostic tests for aquatic animal diseases.

With the financial support of the Canada Excellence Research Chair (CERC) Early Career Development Grant, I was able organize the visit of Dr. David Cummins, a scientist working for the Commonwealth Scientific and Industrial Research Organization (CSIRO), with expertise on development and optimization of molecular tests for the surveillance of aquatic pathogens.

During his visit, Dr. Cummins shared a presentation about his experience in current and future projects led by CSIRO on the development and evaluation of tests for OIE reportable aquatic diseases. The opportunity was particularly enriching thanks to a one-to-one diagnostic exercise facilitated by the virology lab at AVC. For the exercise, we carried out testing on ISAV infected tissue and Dr. Cummins shared his technical expertise on fundamental aspects of molecular testing, including nucleic extraction, RNA quantification, primer design, PCR testing, and sequencing analysis.

The outcomes of this visit included the transfer of skills on molecular techniques and the strengthening of the relationship between AVC and CSIRO, a world-leading research agency with common interests with the Health Management Department at AVC.
The CERC program has been incredibly generous during my fellowship; it has not only provided support for my research projects but has also invested in my personal career development, for which I am very grateful.