Announcing the FocalPlane correspondents

Posted by , on 6 February 2023

At the end of 2022 we invited budding science communicators from the microscopy community to apply to become FocalPlane correspondents. We were delighted to receive many fantastic applications and we are excited to announce that Mariana De Niz, Marta Forcella and Mai Rahmoon will be our FocalPlane correspondents for 2023. They will benefit from a programme of writing groups, webinars and workshops coordinated by the in-house team at The Company of Biologists and will produce approximately six blog posts over the course of the year. We introduce our correspondents briefly below – stay tuned for longer interviews!  

Mariana works in the fields of infectious disease and host-pathogen interactions, using microscopy and image analysis to answer her research questions. Mariana has been a prolific contributor to our sister site preLights, and already has her own blog series on FocalPlane, where she highlights the work of the Latin American microscopy community. Mariana’s posts will focus on democratising microscopy, covering topics such as frugal microscopy, initiatives to improve microscopy in developing countries, as well as the contribution of microscopy to infectious disease research from a historical and public health perspective. 

Marta is a PhD student working at the Champalimaud Foundation in Portugal. She is experienced at using two-photon microscopy to address research questions in neuroscience. She will use her position as FocalPlane correspondent to work on her writing skills and improve her microscopy knowledge. Look out for Marta’s posts on neuroscience, how microscopy companies contribute to the community, and sustainability in microscopy. 

Mai was a postdoctoral fellow at Zewail City for Science and Technology and is now a now an Advanced Imaging Center fellow, at HHMI Janelia. Mai’s research focuses on the intersection between metabolism and oncogenic potential. Her work led her to rapidly develop her imaging and image analysis skills, and she is now part of the African BioImaging Consortium (ABIC). Mai’s posts will focus on imaging communities such as ABIC, with a series of ‘How we started’ articles. 

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