New Faculty Profiles showcase GSA members who are establishing their first independent labs. If you’d like to be considered for a profile, please complete this form on the GSA website.

Carolyn Phillips

Gabilan Assistant Professor of Biological Sciences (Since 2015)
University of Southern California
Lab website

Research program:

The Phillips lab studies the mechanisms of RNA silencing in C. elegans. We utilize a broad range of techniques including microscopy, genetics, biochemistry, and high-throughput sequencing to characterize new components of the RNA silencing pathway and to understand how they contribute to proper gene expression. We are also currently exploring how RNA silencing is regulated spatially (i.e. where the RNA silencing complexes localize and how they get there) and how mRNAs are sorted sub-cellularly to promote gene silencing or gene expression.

How has being a member of GSA helped you advance in your career? Why do you think societies like GSA are important? 

I am a huge fan of the GSA meetings because they are one of the few opportunities that graduate students and postdocs get to present their research. As a graduate student in the Dernburg lab, I was selected to give a plenary talk at the 2005 International C. elegans meeting. It was one of my most terrifying moments as a graduate student but also one of the highlights. GSA meetings are also a great place to catch up with old friends and colleagues.

If your position involves teaching, which subjects or courses are you expecting to teach?

I am teaching undergraduate Molecular Biology (transcription, translation, RNA processing, RNA silencing)
graduate level C. elegans genetics, and RNA biology.

Previous training experiences:

– Postdoctoral fellow at Massachusetts General Hospital/Harvard Medical School (Research Advisor: Gary Ruvkun)
– Graduate student in Molecular and Cell Biology at UC Berkeley (Research Advisor: Abby Dernburg)
– Undergraduate student in Biological Sciences at UC Davis (Research Advisor: Michael Seldin)

What do you like to do when you’re not at work?

I love exploring my new city of Los Angeles, especially when it is 75 degrees and sunny in February.

Chloe Poston is the Policy and Communications Manager for the Genetics Society of America where she serves as a liaison to the Public Policy Committee. She has a background in bio-analytical chemistry and science policy.

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