The intern will contribute to an OHSU gene therapy research project by manipulating a safe virus to develop novel therapeutics. Gene therapy is a promising approach to treat various inherited and acquired human diseases that are difficult to treat with conventional therapies. A wide variety of viruses have been used as gene delivery vectors. Of these, adeno-associated virus (AAV) shows particular promise due to its non-pathogenic nature. The mentor's laboratory studies the biology of AAV, engineering it to develop new gene therapy approaches for targeting human diseases. The intern will participate in an ongoing gene therapy research projects: Molecular engineering of viral genome and coat proteins to create new AAV vectors with the most desirable biological properties in each clinical application. In addition to learning and applying basic and advanced molecular biology, students will contribute to the production of gene therapy viral vectors and assessment of the vectors in cultured cells and experimental animals. The intern will also have the opportunity to learn computer programming, and bioinformatics/biostatistical concepts that allow them to handle and analyze a large quantity of data generated by wet lab experiments.
Low income and minority students are strongly encouraged to apply for this position. Applicants should be aware that on-site parking may be limited and/or unavailable throughout the summer; interns may be required to rely on public transit or alternative transportation.