Center for Scientific Calculus, University of Los Andes (CeCalCULA), Mérida - Venezuela
I have been fascinated by nature and how life works and its changes, since my childhood. This led me to pose many questions that I wanted to answer; as I was able to explore and solve some of these puzzles, new questions came up. This cycle nurtured my scientific spirit and love for studying life, so I decided to study Biology, a decision that I am very happy to have made. During my years of study, many subjects interested me; however, Evolution, Bioinformatics, Biochemistry, and Ecology are among my favourite ones. I am in the final stage to finish my degree as a licentiate in Biology, a five-year degree that requires a thesis project.
I did my thesis at the National Center for Scientific Calculus of the University of the Andes – CeCalCULA, a research group focused on Computational Biology. I have been part of this research group for two years.
I decided to study the Plasmodium falciparum parasite, which produces the worldwide most dangerous form of malaria. This disease has usually been associated with Africa, but recently, it has increased in my country, Venezuela. Artemisinin is the principal drug used worldwide to treat malaria caused by P. falciparum, but recent evidence shows that some strains have some degree of resistance to this drug. Those resistant strains are not well understood.
Apart from bioinformatics and parasitology, I have also studied life from a macro viewpoint. In this context, I have worked in ecology, focus on birds of my city.