Rebecca is a PhD student in the Fritz Lab since late 2020 working on using bacterial extracytoplasmic σ factors for the creation of libraries of genetic timer circuits. Her work mainly focusses on using these molecular timers to drive the expression of antimicrobial ribosomally-produced and post-transcriptionally modified peptides (RiPPs) and finding the relation between temporally differentiated gene expression and peptide production in biosynthetic gene clusters (BGCs). The expression of these RiPP-BGCs is taking place in heterologous systems such as E. coli and V. natriegens, making large scale production of cyptic BGCs in the future more feasible. Using laboratory automations systems such as the Echo 650 acoustic nanoliter dispenser and the INTERGA Assist Plus, her work additionally focusses on the development of miniaturized high-throughput assays for the output measurement of these timers. And just because that is not enough, she also works on the development of new antimicrobial treatments, using novel synthetic RiPP-libraries and antibiotic combination therapy.
In her spare time Rebecca is running the Synthetic Biology Australasia Perth Node which aims to bring together the local Western Australian Synthetic Biology community through locally organised events.
While currently invested in synthetic biology, her interests also lie in research of symbiotic interactions of microbes and microbiology that does not focus on the classic model organism (filamentous fungi, protists etc.) - the weirder the better .
Publications & Preprints
UWA Bayliss Building, Room 3.60
+61 8 6488 4483