Dr Pouria Akhbari I graduated with a DVM (Doctor of Veterinary Medicine) before working in zoonoses control and medical and veterinary diagnostic laboratories in my home country. My passion for research in infectious diseases and pathogen-host interaction led me to complete an MSc in microbiology at University of Bradford with focus on influenza A virus. I then joined Centre for Skin Sciences (CSS), University of Bradford to investigate the role of long non-coding RNAs (LncRNA) in pathogenesis of psoriasis prior to starting my PhD in the same laboratory. With a keen interest in virus-host interaction I investigated the pathogenesis of Merkel cell polyomavirus (MCPyV) in Merkel cell carcinoma (MCC), a deadly and highly aggressive skin cancer. Besides research, I played a pro-active role in representing postgraduate students, organised internal conferences and was involved in teaching and supervision of undergraduate and postgraduate students. I have now joined Prof. Noel Morgan’s team to investigate the role of enteroviruses in type 1 diabetes.
Q. What does a “day in the life of” look like for you?
I usually get up at around 6:30, read the news and check the weather (although I never carry an umbrella) while having breakfast (I can’t start my day without breakfast and coffee). Then walk to work while reviewing the day in my head. A normal day is usually split between lab work and desk work such as data analysis, reading, preparing reports and planning new experiments. After work is a brief break before heading to gym and finishing the day with a favourite programme on TV or a bit of reading while having tea. Weekends are for shopping and usually a medium to long hike.
Q. What made you want to work in your current job?
The team, my passion for research, a great opportunity to learn new skills, to meet new people and to contribute to discovery and understanding of unknowns.
Q. When you’re not working, what do you like to do for fun?
Walking in the nature is always fun, but also reading a good book, watching a good film or spending time with friends while tasting a good wine with cheese!